Summary: As you climb to the summit of the highest peak in the Tucson Mountains, you will see an exceptional display of giant saguaro, prickly pear and barrel cacti, cholla, ocotillo, mesquite and palo verde.
The first mile of the trail follows an old dirt road on the west side of the canyon. Soon the trail drops down and crosses the canyon near the intersection with the trail to the Mam-A-Gah picnic area, King Canyon trail turns right. A nearby sign indicates that the summit of Wasson Peak is only 2.6 miles away. From here a rocky trail continues to a ridgeline that splits the Tucson Mountains east and west; at this point you will catch your first views of the Tucson valley. Follow the trail to its intersection with the Hugh Norris trail. At this point the summit is visible and very much within your reach.
Trailhead: From Tucson, follow Speedway over Gates Pass to its junction with Kinney Road. Turn right, follow Kinney until you reach the Sonora Desert Museum. Parking and trailhead are 0.1 miles from the museum entrance and across (North) the road.
Trail Guides for Wasson Peak: King Canyon Trail:
by Bruce Grubbs and Stewart Aitchision (The Globe Pequot Press)
Tucson Hiking Guide
by Betty Leavengood (Pruett Publishing Company)
Best Seasons: Fall, Spring, Winter,
User Groups: Hikers,
Ranger Contact: Saguaro National Park, Tucson Mountain District
Localhikes Reporter: This hike was submitted by Rob Brinkerhoff, who has posted 33 other hikes on this site
Trail Reviews Page 1 of 4 Submit your own review
Reviewed by JM on 4/27/2013
Our favorite hike in the Tucson Mountains. Starts fairly mild but picks up about halfway in. You'll reach the saddle back and have to decide if you want to try the peak, which I highly recommend you do. Bring lots of water...it's a tough climb from that point on. From the peak, you can see for miles in all directions. Takes us about 3:15 round trip.
Reviewed by Jesse on 1/19/2013
Hiked today, 1/19/2013. This hike can easily be completed in 2.5 hours (round trip) for the experienced hiker, and probably 1.5 for runners. Very rocky trail. Nice summit and great views at the top.
Reviewed by AMJ on 3/1/2012
Awesome hike to the summit, the views are spectacular, & the wildflowers were amazing!
Reviewed by Mitzi on 12/12/2011
Nice scenery, well maintained trail. There is another entry point- go west on Ruthruff until it dead ends into the trail parking lot.
Reviewed by Kat on 5/1/2011
Enjoyed this hike, looking forward to the visit.
Reviewed by Joe on 4/25/2011
LOVE this hike. One of the best in Tucson. Be sure to take plenty of water and start very early in the summer months.
Reviewed by Austin CW on 11/29/2010
Just hiked it yesterday, had a nice digital SLR camera and got some great shots. Lots of great scenery. You should definitely hike down the wash just so long as it's not monsoon season. Took almost 4 hours exactly. It was quite windy and chilly near the top.
Reviewed by mark on 11/16/2010
great views but you have to stop to look around as the trail is rockful plus.we saw a black racer sunning on the path.steep in places for the 50 plus crowd,but great fun
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