As you look toward the Santa Catalinas from metropolitan Tucson, one of the most distinctive landmarks on the Pusch Ridge skyline resembles a closed hand with the index finger extended to make a #1 sign. This is Finger Rock, a 100 foot high formation that marks the steep canyon that bears its name. Finger Rock Canyon offers one of the most direct routes into the Catalina Front Range with its spectacular views and precipitous formations. The trail starts easy and gets progressively rougher. Because of its graduated layout, hikers can tailor an outing along this trail to fit the amount of effort they want to expend. Or, they can go for it and continue past Mt. Kimball to Linda Vista Ridge and the head of Ventana Canyon. Many who come here choose Finger Rock Spring as a good turn-around point. A little looking around reveals some good picnic spots and outstanding overlooks. Beyond the spring, the trail steepens and becomes harder to follow. What has been rocky, rough going becomes even more so. Not surprisingly, as the going gets rougher the overlooks get better. Dramatic vistas of Finger Rock, the sheer walls of the canyon, Tucson and the mountains beyond add to the lung-busting grades to give hikers plenty of incentive to stop, take a break and look around. This hike starts in saguaros and climbs through the Upper Sonoran Zone into a habitat of yucca, live oak, juniper, and agave. The trail leads into the Pusch Ridge Desert Bighorn Sheep Management Area, so leave your dog at home. Finger Rock Trail ends at a junction where a set of switchbacks leads into Ventana Canyon toward Tucson and where Esperero Trail #25 leads to other trails that continue up the slopes of Mt. Lemmon.
At a Glance
Flash Flood Danber
Motorized and mechanical vehicles and equipment, including mountain bikes, are not permitted in Wilderness. Dogs are not allowed on the trail.
Santa Catalina Ranger District
Santa Catalina Ranger District 520-749-8700
Directions: Drive north from Tucson on the Oracle Road (US 89) to Ina Road. Turn right (east) on Ina and drive about a mile to Skyline Road which branches off to the south (right). Follow Skyline (have to make a left to stay on Skyline) to Alvernon Way and turn left (north) to the trailhead and parking lot at the end of the pavement.
Sheer canyons. Easy accessibility. Spectacular views. Rocky ridges . Access to Pusch Ridge. When hiking in remote areas go with a companion whenever possible. Always tell someone where you’ve gone and when you expect to return. 6.2 miles of this trail are in the Pusch Ridge Wilderness. USGS Map(s): Tucson North.