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Prominent Point via Pima Canyon, AZ

Guide 8 Triplogs  1 Topic
  3.5 of 5 
93 8 1
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Difficulty 5 of 5
Route Finding 3 of 5
Distance Round Trip 8 miles
Trailhead Elevation 2,918 feet
Elevation Gain 3,690 feet
Accumulated Gain 3,690 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 8 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 26.45
Interest Off-Trail Hiking, Seasonal Waterfall, Seasonal Creek & Peak
Dogs not allowed
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5  2017-12-29 rvcarter
22  2013-12-31 sirena
12  2013-12-16 rvcarter
42  2013-11-10
Prominent Point
12  2011-10-07 bikeandhike
Author bikeandhike
author avatar Guides 1
Routes 6
Photos 206
Trips 12 map ( 91 miles )
Age 34 Male Gender
Location Phoenix, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Nov, Mar, Apr, Feb → Early
Seasons   Autumn to Winter
Sun  5:38am - 7:22pm
Official Route
1 Alternative
Historic Fire Perimeteracres
🔥 2020 Bighorn Fire119.5k

It hurts so good!
by bikeandhike

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Prominent Point is visible from almost anywhere in Tucson as two big rock slabs immediately to the west of Finger Rock. Despite being a highly noticeable feature, it is rarely visited. No trails lead to it, but there are a few doable bushwhacks. Here, I will cover a route that goes over the ridge south of Pima Canyon over to the western summit. This is a very difficult route, but it's the most scenic way to get there.

Restrictions in the Pusch Ridge Wilderness
Dogs are not allowed (except service dogs, but you probably should not attempt this hike if you need a service dog). Off-trail hiking is not permitted between January 1 and April 30.

Don't do this hike if there's any chance of rain. Don't do this hike in warm weather. Don't do this hike without sturdy clothing that fully covers your body and thick-soled footwear. Don't do this hike if you're an inexperienced off-trail hiker. Don't do this hike if you are uncomfortable with extended and exposed stretches of class 2-3 scrambling.

Go down the Pima Canyon Trail #62 until you pass Rosewood Point (the high point of the ridge that's to your right as you enter Pima Canyon). As you pass Rosewood Point, you'll notice a canyon on your right. Once you're immediately across from the low point of the canyon (about 1.6 miles from the trailhead), hack your way over to it and start climbing. There are some cairns, but you don't need to follow them closely; just go up. As you approach the saddle that's southeast of Rosewood Point, you'll see that the canyon sharply bends to the northeast. You'll want to keep following the canyon as it bends. This is where things start to get tough.

After you pass the bend, the canyon gets much steeper, and the flora gets much nastier. Watch out for spiky things, especially cholla and shindagger. As you approach the top of the canyon, curve up onto the ridge to your left to avoid the cliffs in front of you. Once you're near the top of the ridge, follow it past the cliffs at the end of the canyon. Once you're past those cliffs, continue heading northeast into the shindagger-choked wash that feeds the canyon. Follow this wash until it ends, and then climb straight out of it onto a ridgeline.

Once you've reached the ridge, you'll see that it climbs to a high point with some trees on it. That high point is the western summit of Prominent Point. Getting there is as straightforward as it looks; just follow the ridge until you get up there. Keep an eye out for game tracks and follow them when possible. When the ridge starts to seem sadistically steep, you're almost there.

When you reach the summit (a flat area with some boulders and pinon pines), make sure to walk over to the eastern edge. From there, you'll have a great view of Finger Rock Canyon and the eastern summit of Prominent Point. The eastern summit is a few feet higher, but there aren't any easy routes over there. When you're ready to go, head back the way you came up.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

This is a difficult hike. Arrive fit and prepared or this could get ugly.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2011-10-08 bikeandhike
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Permit $$

    Coronado Forest
    MVUMs are rarely necessary to review unless mentioned in the description or directions
    Coronado Motor Vehicle Use Maps (MVUMs)

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To Iris O. Dewhirst Trailhead
    Drive north from Tucson on Oracle Road (US 89). Turn east on Magee Road and drive to the parking area and trailhead at the road's end.


    From Tucson, drive north on Campbell Avenue until you reach Skyline Drive. Turn left on Skyline, which will eventually become Ina Road. Continue on Ina Road until you reach Christie Drive. Follow Christie Drive north until it dead-ends at Magee Road. Turn right on Magee and follow it until you arrive at the Iris O. Dewhirst Trailhead on your right.

    From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 110 mi - about 1 hour 44 mins
    From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 9.6 mi - about 19 mins
    From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 253 mi - about 3 hours 50 mins
    page created by bikeandhike on Oct 08 2011 6:26 pm
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