Rattlesnake Trail #275


map thumbnail

This trail extends between the Pine Canyon Road (FR 357) and the Bootlegger Trail #257. From a trailhead about a mile and a half east of the Methodist Camp on upper Pine Canyon Road, it heads up Rattlesnake Canyon following what is left of an old fire road. Although the road has deteriorated well beyond the state where it became impassable, traces of it remain along the trail’s entire course through the canyon. After winding back and forth across the dry streambed of Rattlesnake Creek for about three quarters of a mile, the trail enters the Chiricahua Wilderness. About a half mile further up-canyon, a Forest Service sign marks the point where the trail leaves Rattlesnake Canyon to begin its climb into the high country. Once it leaves the canyon floor, the Rattlesnake Trail climbs to a high saddle and turns east. The views, as well as the gradient, are pleasant along this stretch of the trail, which more or less stays with the ridge line all the way to its junction with the Bootlegger Trail and the Rock Creek Trail #259 near the Wilderness boundary. From this junction, the Bootlegger Trail #257 provides a steep but direct route to the Crest Trail #270 while the Rock Creek Trail heads west into the narrow canyon of Rock Creek.

At a Glance

Usage: Light
Restrictions: Motorized and mechanized vehicles and equipment, including mountain bikes, are not permitted in Wilderness.
Operated By: Douglas Ranger District
Information Center: Douglas Ranger District   520-364-3468

General Information

Directions: From Tucson, take I-10 east 81 miles. Turn right (south) on AZ 186 and continue for 23 miles. Turn left (east) on AZ 181 toward Chiricahua National Monument and drive 4 miles, then turn right (south) on FR 42. Continue up Pinery Canyon 6 miles to FR 42C and continue on FR 357 to the trailhead (high clearance vehicle recommended). Forest Road 42 is a gravel road suitable for passenger vehicles. This road is open April through November. The road is not plowed and is usually closed following early or late season snowstorms. This road is rough and dusty and may be muddy and slick after a rain.



Show detail SHOW
Areas & Activities


  Area/Length : 
4 miles

  Elevation : 
6,500 feet - 8,320 feet