8 of the Best Hikes to Explore Tucson Terrain

One of the most popular ways to explore Tucson is by hiking in and around the city. Although residents and visitors may not agree on which hike is the best, here’s a list of the best hikes to explore Tucson terrain. After all, Tucson has a very diverse landscape, ranging from desert to mountains.

1. Tumamoc Hill

This classic hike allows city residents a quick hike up a paved road to a spectacular view of the city. Overall, it’s a 3.1-mile hike--but don’t expect this to be easy! The incline of the hill brings a unique cardiovascular quality to the experience. But if you choose your timing right, you might just catch a spectacular sunrise or a sunset.

Location: Tumamoc Hill is west of “A” Mountain and Tucson. Park along Anklam Road.

2. Yetman Trail

View more of Tucson’s terrain by enjoying the 12-mile round-trip hike of Yetman Trail in Tucson Mountain Park. This particular hike will take you through a breath-taking saguaro-rich valley and mountains. As an added bonus, this park is also home to the movie studio, Old Tucson, and the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum.

Location: You can join the trail at the Starr Pass Resort, Carmino de Oeste, or Gates Pass on the Desert Museum side.

3. Blackett’s Ridge

Want to see a stunning view of the city? Blackett’s Ridge takes you up a challenging 1,700 feet in elevation in 6 miles and offers a view of the city in every direction. You’ll see a number of different plant species along the way!

Location: Hikers join Blackett’s Ridge by starting out on Bear Canyon Trail or Phoneline Trail. A number of trails connect to Blackett’s Ridge.

4. Wasson Peak

One of the best ways to experience the Sonoran Desert is to hike to Wasson Peak. The Sweetwater Trail shows off its impressive saguaro along the way. This 7.1-mile loop features lovely wildflowers and easy-to-follow trail signs. While the trail starts out easy, eventually it becomes more difficult but leads you to a panoramic view of the city.

Location: To get to Wasson Peak, hikers follow Sweetwater Trail and connect with King Canyon Trail.

5. The Window

If you’re in the mood for a challenging hike, The Window is the one for you. A series of steep switchbacks lead you to a 100-foot drop with an expansive view of the city. This is not an easy hike and could easily take anything from 6-9 hours depending on your pace.

Location:The Ventana Trail connects hikers to The Window. It’s a 12.3-mile round trip.

6. Aspen-Marshal Gulch

A wonderful summer hike near Tucson, the Aspen-Marshal Gulch loop is a mile above Tucson and offers a 3.7-mile loop with plenty of aspens and conifers along the way. Be sure to grab a seat in the chair fashioned from logs along the trail. This loop is also known for its cool mountain air, brilliant yellow columbines, and maple trees.

Location: In the community of Summerhaven, drive a mile south until you arrive in a picnic area in Marshall Gulch.

7. Robles Pass Trails

If you like to keep your options open, Robles Pass Trails is the place to go. It offers ideal paths for hikers, bikers, and horseback riders. Adventurers can explore steep ridges and saguaro-studded treks. The hikes in this area can be easy walks of distances less than a mile or longer loops with rising elevation.

Location: Robles Pass Trails is located at the southern end of the Tucson Mountain Park.

8. Bridal Wreath

An easy, 5.6-mile hike, Bridal Wreath showcases the eastern side of the Saguaro National Park. The hike begins fairly flat before slowly increasing in elevation into the mountains. Along the way, hikers will enjoy amazing views, lots of wildlife, and plenty of vegetation. This is a popular trail so it’s perfect for a new or solo hiker.

Location: Bridal Wreath can be accessed at the trailhead at the end of Speedway Boulevard or by the Douglas Springs trail.
Viewing Tucson through the many popular hiking opportunities can give you a glimpse of the type of land that you want to build your future home on. Take the time to discover Tucson and determine where you want to live.

When you’re looking for an area to live in, taking a hike may reveal where you want to buy your lot of land. The land is an important part of your home space.