Last climb to the falls

Chiva Falls

Rincon Mountains
Tucson, Arizona

Distance: 7.4 miles
Type: jeep trail, out & back
Time: 1-3 hours
Season: not summer
Elevation Range: 3720-3950 ft
Permit Required: No

Quick Rating: fast trail with a touch of technical

Chiva Area Trail Map (left half)
(526 Kb JPG)
Chiva Area Trail Map (right half)
(359 Kb JPG)

Trail map and log are not current or complete
Unfortunately, there's a small minority of OHV users who continue to cut new trails in the Chiva Falls area. These trails are added faster than maps and logs can be updated.


A fast and fun ride for almost everyone. The trail connects short steep climbs and descents with rolling hills. The down side? This area is one of the most popular weekend destinations in the area for cyclists, 4WDs, and ATVs. The trails get wider every season. If you're looking for a scenic desert ride or hike along a quiet trail, seek elsewhere.


A trail for everyone. Newbies will find it fun and challenging. Veterans can see how fast they can ride it without dabbing.

How to get there

Take Tanque Verde Road east of town where it turns into Redington Road. Entrance 1 parking (the main trail access area) is 4.5 miles after the paved road ends and the dirt road starts. There's a corral on the left and a cleared area on the right. Unless you're early there will already be a bunch of cars parked there.

Chiva Falls Elevation Profile

Trail Log

0.0 Start from the parking area. You can take the trail at the left or right. They join down the hill. We prefer the right trail since we come up the left one.
2.0 Pass Chiva Tank on the left.
2.3 Trail 4417 joins from the left. Stay right.
2.7 Trail 4405 joins from the right. Stay left.
2.8 Trail 4405 splits right at an old corral. Follow it across the Tanque Verde Wash and smaller Joaquin Wash.
3.5 Trail 4405 splits right up a steep hill. Stay left down the loose hill in front of you.
3.7 End of the trail. Check out the falls if they're running or practice your bike handling skills on the granite. Ride out the way you came in when you're ready.
3.9 Trail 4405 again on the left. Did you make the climb up the Challenge Hill? I've only seen one rider do it.
4.4 Trail crosses Joaquin Wash and Tanque Verde Canyon Wash.
4.6 Turn left on Trail 4426 at the corral.
4.7 Trail 4405 joins from the left. Continue right on Trail 4426. There's a singletrack shortcut on the north side of the intersection you might like to try.
5.1 Trail 4417 joins from the right. Stay left. Chiva Tank will appear shortly on the right.
7.4 Back where you started.


Start early to avoid traffic on the trail. The Chiva Falls section of the trail is probably the busiest around. It's also very popular with 4WD and quad enthusiasts. You'll find the vehicles noisy but the riders friendly and helpful. More than once we've been offered food, water, and a ride.

Watch out for hikers and yield the trail, smile, and wave. They're not common but that's all the more reason to watch for them.

Trail maps are not complete. 4WDs are adding trails even as we speak so not all of them are mapped. The important intersections still had trail markers last time I looked.




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Copyright 1997-2004 R Scott Cherba All Rights Reserved