Rincon Peak Trail

HARD 7 reviews
#18 of 61 trails in

Rincon Peak Trail is a 13.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Benson, Arizona that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round.

13.3 miles
4494 feet
Out & Back



nature trips



wild flowers


no dogs

2 months ago

Completely worth the 1 hr. drive from Tucson. 16.2 miles over various, rocky terrain wore me out..

Cairns will help you out when you need it. It helps to have some experience in noticing them.

7 months ago

Got a late start on the day (8:15a). AllTrails lists as a 13.3 mile out and back when in truth, this hike is 16.2 out and back.

The trailhead starts on private, fenced property and is accessible from the second left dirt road. You should park you vehicle in the large open "round-about" the moment you pull in. From there, walk down the second left "road" all the way to the car turnaround. There is a fence that can be opened to access. You will see the trail marker directly in front of you. Make sure to close the fence behind you so you don't release the livestock. The trail map that AllTrails provides is not accurate (although it does get you on the actual trail eventually. This map sends you up a large washout.

Pack extra water, you will need it. Once you hike through the lowland areas Rincon wastes no time and shows some short, but serious elevation climbs.

The trip to the summit has some nice vistas, but this is not what I would call a scenic assent compared to many other southwestern trails. You will find yourself needing a few breaks over the final 1,200' assent as the switchbacks are very tight and the grade is very steep. This is not s technical climb but make sure you drink plenty of water to remain hydrated. A lazily placed foot can result in a serious injury here. We nicknamed this trail, "The Angry Trainer". Every time you think you're getting a breather, it torques up the grade and try's to sap your energy as if to be saying, "come on you pansy, gimme 10 more!!".

Once you hit the summit, you'll get the feeling of sitting on the worlds ceiling. The summit is solid stone and void of trees. The only plant life are a scant few bushes that call this Peak home. While we were there, we shared the view with millions of ladybugs. As they swarmed over us, it felt strangely like those jellyfish like creatures from Avatar. Very tranquil experience. Make sure you stack a rock on the pile before your decent as a symbol of you conquest.

This is a long hike (took us 9 hours out and back not counting time at the top for lunch, snacks etc.). If you can make this summit, there's not much you can't do (short of a 14er).

1) Pack extra water. I recommend an extra liter over your normal consumption.
2) Start early. By 7am.
3) Bring along layers to accommodate for temperature fluctuations (we did our hike on 23 May and had perfect weather).
4) Enjoy the summit if weather permits (it can be pretty gusty). Full 360 view makes you feel a like your kind of a big deal, lol.
5) Put a few Dos Equis in your Yeti and keep it at your vehicle. You'll thank me for that one when you reach the bottom.
6) This hike actually is about the destination, not the journey, and well worth the belt notch!!

11 months ago

Yes the 13 miles listed on top of the page is not correct. The rating as difficult is correct though. I've done this hike and it was over 16 miles when we got back to the truck, per my Garmin and the signs. And it is a pull for sure. I actually gave up when I was about 1/2 mile from the peak. But summoned the energy to go all the way after a short break. It is definitely an all day adventure. Camping over night up in Happy Valley would be a great way to break this up into 2 shorter days. Nice spots to camp all over up there. We did this in late May, and I wouldn't recommend that either. It was hot and we almost ran out of water on the walk back. And we carried a lot!! Beautiful views obviously when on top, and another island range peak in southern Arizona bagged. And yes, as someone else posted, the last 1/2 mile or so is really steep!!!

Monday, July 11, 2016

Forest service has this listed as 16.2 miles round trip. My GPS clocked it at 15.4. Definitely more than 13 though. Had a great time on this hike but it's a days work. I was hiking for about 8 hours. Great views from the top and several spots along the way. Camping sites available as well about midway.

Sunday, May 05, 2013

Incredible hike! Arizona rates their trails 1-5 5 being hardest and this is a 5! It's pretty good till the .5 mile marker to the peak. Then it is literally more than a 45 degree angle climb to the top! Insane yet well worth it. I live 10 miles from the mountain and look at it everyday knowing I've been to the tip top!

2 months ago

Monday, September 26, 2016