Puerto Blanco Drive

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.

This is a route we have wanted to explore for several years now. In the fall of 2020, it was on our “must-do” list once again as we were base camped in Tucson, about a 2-hour drive away. As we began researching the route in-depth, it became apparent that sections of the loop were closed due to construction. Thus, we have documented this route as a Development Route until we get back to ride it another year. We are nearly 100% convinced that it is a 5 Star Route.

Hopefully the construction will be completed soon. You can find the road status on the US Park service page.

Undoubtedly one of the most scenic roads in Arizona, the 37 mile Puerto Blanco Drive travels deep into the unspoiled backcountry of the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, across cactus plains, and through mountain foothills. Besides the Sonoran Desert’s varied plants, the drive passes close to old mines, springs, historic sites, and tree-lined oasis.

After mile 5, the road is unpaved and one-way for x miles. At the intersection with Pozo Nuevo road, Puerto Blanco road is once again two-way. From this point onward, the road parallels the Mexican border alongside the international boundary fence for 13 miles back to AZ 85. [The American Southwest]

For a full description of the route, read the reviews on

Adventure / Gravel Route

Loop: 42 miles / 1300 ft gain
– Surface: 75% gravel / dirt road, 25% paved
eBike Friendly: Yes
– Location: ~ 2 hours, 25 minutes west of Tucson, Arizona
– Published: November 2020

Technical Difficulty & Risk[what this means]

Unknown. We suspect the area has very limited if any cell phone coverage. Road conditions and back country usage are not known.

When we like to ride this …

… fall through spring when the temperatures are more moderate.

The Start

Kris Eggle Visitor Center. Flush toilets and water.
Lat / Long: 31.954691, -112.801396

Food & Water

None


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.

Legend

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.

  • Kevin / Co-Founder @ Dirty Freehub says:

    From RobertJV, ~ mid February 2021.
    “Without a doubt the Puerto Blanco Loop is a 5 star ride. I took a bunch of audio notes and pics and I will get you a proper report soon(might be a week or so as I’m currently trying to get as much riding in as possible while I’m here). But for now I will say the only pavement is the final 4.5 miles, except for a few sections with very short(a few hundred feet max) pavement mixed in with gravel. I was able to ride the entire thing on 42s, there were 2 or 3 sections that were tough for 5 min or less with some deep loose pebbly stuff. Other than that nothing crazy. 100% would recommend.”

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