Owl Head

Development Route / by Captain ‘O’ & Gravel Girl

Note: This is a Development Route, meaning that it is a work in progress and currently does not meet the Dirty Freehub 5 Star standard for great routes.

We rode this route in the fall of 2017. Parts of the route (miles 19 to 33) are really good riding with undulating terrain, big saguaro cactus, and views of Picacho Peak. The lead in miles are on good terrain, but a bit straight and lacking in scenic variety, thus the designation as a training route.

This area, and going north and further east, has the potential for some great gravel rides, but has had little exploration and documentation that we can find. The area that we are specifically referring to is bounded by:

  • Tucson on the south,
  • Picacho, Coolidge, Florence on the west,
  • Superior on the north, and
  • Kearny, Dudleyville, and Oracle on the east.

Another route in the area that we have documented, but have not ridden, is Cochie Canyon Trail.

If you ride this area and have route recommendations and pictures to share, please send us an email. We would really appreciate it! Our email address is at the bottom of the page.

Adventure / Gravel Route

– Loop: 33 miles / 1000 ft gain
– Surface: ~ 85% gravel, 15% paved
eBike Friendly: Yes
– Location: ~ 30 min northwest of Tucson, AZ
– Published: November 2020

Technical Difficulty & Risk[what this means]

Easier+. The area is at the urban / rural boundary of greater Tucson.

The Start

A makeshift dirt parking area at the intersection of N. Owl Head Ranch road and Cochie Canyon Trail road.
Lat / Long: 32.470032, -111.194865

For help with GPS files, the RideWithGPs mapping app and to learn how to download our routes for free, see the “Using Our Rides” page.


Red = paved road
Brown = gravel / dirt road

Researched by …

Gravel Girl / Team Dirty Freehub

She loves a good day of gravel like most people like a good book. She’s always amused by the outdoors and the wild adventures. Gravel Girl is a Co-Founder of Dirty Freehub.

Captain O / Team Dirty Freehub

He should have “Never Stop Exploring” tattooed on his chest! He loves adventures on bikes and is a Co-Founder of Dirty Freehub.

  • H. Gruneisen says:

    Live and ride(mostly road but searching out gravel) in Tucson and have enjoyed your postings on gravel in the area. This is the first route I downloaded and set out to do with a friend. Overall a great route with a few major caveats. Hedgehog/Power Line was unrideable most of the way because of the deep sand. Even trying to find alternate paths out of the sand, in the bush along the edge, was difficult if not impossible. Lots of scratched legs along the way. Also some of the washboards were tough but you do have to manage those. We thought sections of the route were extremely scenic and really loved seeing the area. Thanks for your explorations and continue posting…we appreciate it! Good Gravel!

    • KevinE says:

      Thanks for letting us know. I just did a more detailed look at satellite imagery and Strava heat maps. I was able to re-route around Hedgehog / Power line. Hopefully, this will make it better. Ride dirty and smile!!

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