Driving to the trailhead.
Rain and clouds… The perfect day for a hike! To enjoy the somewhat rare grey skies I decided to hike up to Rosewood Point. My reward for braving the weather was getting to watch clouds swirling around Table Mountain and The Cleaver – different from the usual views in Pima Canyon!
Rosewood Point is a highpoint above the eastern cliffs of Pima canyon. Rosewood Point, and nearby North Rosewood Point, offer great views of Pima Canyon and surrounding locations including Pusch Peak, Table Mountain and The Cleaver.
Parking for this hike is the Iris O. Dewhirst Pima Canyon Trailhead located at the end of Magee Road.
This hike is in the Pusch Ridge Wilderness area – two restrictions to be aware of: travel more than 400 feet off trail is forbidden January thru April (this hike is partially off-trail – Rosewood Point is ‘closed’ during that time period) and dogs are not permitted on the trail (except seeing-eye dogs or handi-dogs).
From the parking area take the Pima Canyon Trail. At 1 mile the trail enters Pima Canyon and at 1.8 miles the trail turns southeast and begins to parallel a small canyon (you will hike up this canyon to get close to the saddle below Rosewood Point). Stay on the Pima Canyon Trail and cross the canyon – after a few minutes look for a faint off-trail route on the right (approximately mile 2) – there are a number of faint trails in this area but you should be able to use any of them. Hike (roughly) south towards the bottom of the small canyon via the path of least resistance.
A view of the clouds moving over and around The Cleaver – taken from near where I left the Pima Canyon Trail.
Once in the canyon bottom cairns begin to appear that may help you find the easiest path up the canyon. As you get higher in the canyon the cairns become less frequent and the drainage will begin to turn to the east. Make your best guess about the location of the trail and work south up the hillside to the saddle.
Table Mountain thru the rusted barbed wire fence at the saddle.
The saddle is a great spot to take a break and enjoy the views. Several faint trails leave the saddle and take you up thru the cliffs. Above the cliffs it is an easy hike to Rosewood Point. Enjoy the views from Rosewood Point – but leave time to hike to North Rosewood Point.
Looking up Pima Canyon – a few minutes before reaching Rosewood Point.
Rosewood Point with Table Mountain in the background.
North Rosewood Point is another high point to the northwest that is just a few minutes of hiking from Rosewood Point. The views from North Rosewood Point include an interesting look at the cliffs on the east side of the Pima Canyon.
Looking down Pima Canyon from North Rosewood Point.
There are a number of possible ways back to the parking area from Rosewood Point. Following the ridgeline to the west is suggested as an interesting route in “The Santa Catalina Mountains: A Guide to the Trails and Routes” by Pete Cowgill and Eber Glendening (see the Rosewood Point description for details). But watching the rain roll across Tucson convinced me to take the easiest route down – back the same way I came up! This hike totals just over 7 miles.