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This is likely a great time to hike this trail!  Check out "Prefered" months below, keep in mind this is an estimate.

Peak 6865 - Catalinas, AZ

Guide 1 Triplog  0 Topics
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Difficulty 4 of 5
Route Finding 4 of 5
Distance Round Trip 9 miles
Trailhead Elevation 3,008 feet
Elevation Gain 3,880 feet
Accumulated Gain 4,250 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 7 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 30.25
Interest Off-Trail Hiking, Seasonal Waterfall, Seasonal Creek & Peak
Backpack Possible - Not Popular
Dogs not allowed
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
47  2017-02-26 air
Author air
author avatar Guides 2
Routes 17
Photos 307
Trips 44 map ( 349 miles )
Age Male Gender
Location Tucson, Arizona
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Nov, Mar, Apr, Feb
Seasons   Late Winter to Early Summer
Sun  6:57am - 6:17pm
Official Route
0 Alternative

Likely In-Season!
Peak 6865 stands between Ventana and Esperero Canyons in the Pusch Ridge Wilderness. Decent views from the top and interesting things to see on approach.

Nothing to be found online about this peak. No cairns seen along the way or register/pile on top. I left some footprints and packed out party balloon wreckage.

Start at Ventana Canyon trailhead and follow the trail to the popular Maiden Pools area. As you near the pools, notice a canyon on the right that feeds into Ventana Canyon at the base of the falls under Maiden Pools. The first part of the off-trail route generally follows the left edge of that canyon to get to the top of a large waterfall at 5500 ft. Off-trail begins by crossing Ventana Canyon at Maiden Pools and getting up the hill on the other side. Follow the hilltop and then curve to the northeast to negotiate catclaw patches as you make your way to the edge of the approach canyon. It's best to do this when grasses are dormant. At about 5350 ft. you will see a waterfall on the other side. The first goal is to get on top of those falls by continuing up to and around a large rock formation I call "The Plank". East of The Plank is an expansive slickrock/waterfall area that is well worth a visit on its own. Be sure to look down the falls.

From the slickrock area it's about a half mile and average 45% grade to the summit of 6865. Take your time and make each step solid while enjoying the pines, madrones, and rock formations. Stay on the ridge spine that my track follows, especially on the way down where the forest obscures the way and its easy to veer off into trouble. At the top are two summit towers easily scrambled and the south tower is a bit lower but has incredible views that include where you parked. Peak 6237, another peak that is not on any peak list, is to the southeast. Rattlesnake peak is 212 ft. lower and to the east, Cathedral peak to the north. Peak 7395 dominates the view to the northwest with summit spires of Window peak just down and to the right. Kimball, Peak 6810/Gorp, and Peak 5783 to the west. It's great that even so close to Tucson there are still places to explore.

Check out the Official Route and Triplog.

This is a moderately difficult hike.

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

2017-02-28 air
  • sub-region related
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 $$
Visit this link for full details.
2021 - FAQ
$8 per vehicle per day
$10 per vehicle per week
$40 per vehicle per year (valid for one year from date of purchase)

There are four specific day use areas that require a Coronado Recreational Pass or a National Pass/America the Beautiful Pass.
1) Sabino Canyon - located on the Santa Catalina Ranger District (520)749-8700
2) Madera Canyon - located on the Nogales Ranger District (520)281-2296
3) Cave Creek - located on the Douglas Ranger District (520)364-3468
4) Mt. Lemmon at 11 day-use sites.

2021 Catalina State Park
Per vehicle (1-4 Adults): $7.00
Individual/bicycle: $3.00

2021 Sabino Canyon Tram is $12 extra. [ website ]

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 Ventana Trailhead
1) From I-10 head east on W Ina Rd for 6.9 mi
2) Continue onto E Skyline Dr for 1.9 mi
3) Continue onto E Sunrise Dr for 3.2 mi
4) Turn left onto N Craycroft Rd and follow 2.5 mi
5) Turn left onto N Resort Dr and follow 0.1 mi
6) Ventana Trailhead Parking is on your left. It is a large slender lot. Trail takes off from the end.

If you continue to far on N Resort Dr you will quickly enter the resort on Flying V Rd, turn around.

From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 117 mi, 1 hour 57 mins
From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 15.4 mi, 29 mins
From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 260 mi, 4 hours 6 mins
page created by air on Feb 28 2017 1:51 pm
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