Loma Verde Loop

A scenic, varied, and uncrowded loop beginning in the Cactus Forest and climbing to higher views near the foot of the mountains.

Hiking Moderate

Distance
6 km
Ascent
65 m
Descent
65 m
Duration
1-2 hrs
Low Point
834 m
High Point
869 m
Gradient
Loma Verde Loop Map

Starting from a small parking lot along Cactus Forest Drive, Loma Verde Trail heads into a rather lush woodland of mesquite and cacti along a seasonal stream. The trail crosses this wash twice, then climbs past a small bluff to reach the top of a hill. From there, it proceeds on a long, gradual downhill through the cactus forest. Look for traces of the Loma Verde Mine, in the form of red and greenish waste piles, where copper was once extracted.

Description

Eventually comes the junction with Pink Hill Trail, which makes a short climb to another hilltop, with nice views over much of the forest and the Tucson suburbs beyond. From there, a few modest ups and steeper downs lead into a broad wash that is usually dry, and after crossing it, the trail gradually ascends to meet Squeeze Pen Trail. That trail traverses near the foot of Tanque Verde Ridge, over rockier terrain with elevated views. Try to notice how increasing elevation changes the species of cacti along the trail. Near the end of Squeeze Pen, an abrupt downhill through denser vegetation leads back to Loma Verde Trail and the first wash crossing, thus completing the loop.

Sources: https://www.nps.gov/sagu/planyourvisit/saguarohiking.htm https://www.americansouthwest.net/arizona/saguaro/loma-verde-squeeze-pen-trails.html

Difficulty

Moderate

Hiking along trails with some uneven terrain and small hills. Small rocks and roots may be present.

Medium Exposure

2 out of 4

The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.

Remoteness

2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December

Features

  • Wildlife
  • Historical
  • Picturesque
  • Wild flowers
  • Water features
  • Family friendly
  • Forestry or heavy vegetation

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area