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Wildhorse to Douglas Springs Loop

Easy/Intermediate
 2.8 (5) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A rolling, smooth singletrack loop with minor elevation gain and many loop options.


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Map Key

3.1

Miles

4.9

KM

100%

Runnable

2,850' 869 m

High

2,710' 826 m

Low

157' 48 m

Up

152' 46 m

Down

2%

Avg Grade (1°)

5%

Max Grade (3°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Overview

This loop is located close to the east side of Tucson with great views of the surrounding Rincon and Catalina mountains as well as the Tanque Verde area. There are also opportunities to see wildlife such as deer. The run can be a little sandy in stretches early on, but overall this is a good, quick run with many loop options and well-marked trail signs at every junction.

Need to Know

This route is slightly sandy in spots early on but it's shallow sand. The Douglas Springs trailhead can be crowded at least on weekends, and I think 90 percent of the people head up the Douglas Spring Trail. I saw or heard no one on any other part of the loop other than DS section.

Runner Notes

This runner saw a deer running across the trail within the first few minutes of entering the park, so keep an eye out for full time residents!

Description

Park at the Douglas Springs Trailhead and run 100 yards west back to the horse trailer parking area. Starting at the horse trailer parking, head west at the first intersection for a short distance on the Shantz Trail which starts almost immediately after entering the park boundary.

Once on the Shantz Trail, you'll pass the a junction with the Bajada Wash on your left, but keep going until you come to the Kennedy Trail. Take a left on the Kennedy Trail, and head in a general southern direction. After a couple intersections, continue straight on the Squeeze Pen Trail for a short distance before taking a left on the Bajada Vista Trail.

The Bajada Vista Trail is a short route offering views of the Sonoran Desert. You'll continue to climb gradually until you come to an intersection with the Wildhorse Trail and the Garwood Trail. Continue on the Garwood Trail.

From this point, it is pretty much a gradual downhill until you hit the Douglas Springs Trail. Take a left and then it's just a short distance to the parking lot.

Flora & Fauna

Creosote, saguaro and other cacti, wildflowers, desert scrub brush, and mesquite.

Contacts

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Trail Ratings

  2.8 from 5 votes

#4565

Overall
  2.8 from 5 votes
5 Star
0%
4 Star
20%
3 Star
40%
2 Star
40%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#167

in Arizona

#4,565

Overall
18 Views Last Month
1,974 Since Aug 21, 2016
Easy/Intermediate

60%
20%
20%
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Photos

Looking south toward the Rincons.
Aug 21, 2016 near Tanque…, AZ
Intersection of Wildhorse, Garwood, Bajada Vista Trails. Trails are really well signed, just follow the arrows. A lot of life in the desert with the Prickly Pear, Cholla, Brittle Brush, Creosote, Palo Verde and Mesquite Trees all blossoming. The western end of the Catalina Mountains in the distance.
May 1, 2016 near Tanque…, AZ
A trail through the lowland desert beneath the Rincon Mountains.
May 26, 2021 near Tanque…, AZ
Big cactus in Saguaro Wilderness
Apr 29, 2015 near Tanque…, AZ
Flowering mature and you Saguaros along the Bajada Vista trail.
Jun 7, 2016 near Tanque…, AZ
Flowering Saguaros, chollas, and prickly pear cacti.
Jun 7, 2016 near Tanque…, AZ

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Check-Ins

Jan 27, 2021
Matt Hage
3mi — 0h 30m
May 23, 2020
Andred Garcia
A lot of loose sand and gravel. And there's horse crap everywhere!
Apr 14, 2020
Jenna H
Shantz to Creosote (somehow missed Shantz veering to the right to directly link to Kennedy), Kennedy, Squeeze Pen, Bajada Vista, Garwood, Stock Byp… 3.5mi — 36h 55m
Jun 24, 2019
Alan Craig
beautiful run, sandy in first mile, path awesome after that. 3.1mi — 0h 40m