To The Wall

Development Route

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 that appears to have come into focus due to the building of the “new” border wall from 2016 to 2020. Many of the roads used in this route do not appear on ESRI, OSM, or USGS maps. Miles 0 to 15 were”discovered” by TimothyS, and the miles beyond were mapped using satellite imagery.

We are confident the route “goes”, but … the riding for miles 23 to 30 may be on a more primitive road. Up to mile 23, TimothyS reported double-wide, fast, hard-packed gravel road suitable to 40 mm tires. For a first time explorer of the route, we would recommend 50 mm tires to be on the safe side of comfort. We also recommend that you be self sufficient and carry and personal locating beacons like a Garmin InReach or Spot.

The route drops down very close to the newly constructed border wall; a short detour will bring you up to the wall. A trip to the wall is worth your time to see the structure’s enormity and engineering work.

The route is centered in the Pajarita mountains.

“The Pajarito Mountains is a small mountain range of western Santa Cruz County, Arizona, United States, that extend south into Sonora, Mexico. The range is adjacent to the Atascosa Mountains at its north, with both ranges in the center of a north-south sequence of ranges, called the Tumacacori Highlands.” [Wikipedia]

“Although unimposing in elevation, the Tumacacori Highlands have sharp ridges, steep slopes, and rocky cliffs that limit the number of roads and give the area a feeling of remoteness. The vegetation is scattered evergreen oak woodlands on north facing slopes with scrub-grasslands on south facing slopes. Mesquite and acacia shrubs are common, as are agaves and sotols.” [US Forest Service]

If you do this route (or attempt it), please leave a comment below with what you’re found / experienced. If you can help us with one or several elements, we would appreciate it.

  • Verification that the route goes as mapped.
  • Verification of the mileage and elevation gain.
  • An actual ride GPX file.
  • Route details and description. (Things like road surfaces, terrain, scenic payback, hazards, etc.)
  • Pictures / Videos along the route.

Adventure / Gravel Route

Lollipop: 32 miles / 3300 ft gain
– Surface: ~ 95% gravel, 5% paved
eBike Friendly: Yes
– Location: ~ Tucson, AZ
– Published: February 2021

Technical Difficulty & Risk[what this means]

Advanced (Overall)

  • Technical Riding Difficulty: Unknown
    Miles 0 to 23 are on fast, hard-packed gravel roads. The road quality from mile 23 to 30 is unknown.
  • Navigation Challenge & Risk: Advanced
    There are many turns along the way, and most of the roads are un-named and do not show up on many of the popular maps. A wrong turn could make for a very long day. We recommend carrying at least two independent mapping devices.
  • Remote Risk: Unknown
    With the cessation of activities at the border wall, the area could have little activity.

When we like to ride this …

Fall through spring. Summer could be hot and exposed. Note, in spring the creeks / washes may hold water.

The Start

A makeshift dirt parking area off of the west side of Old Ruby Road.
Lat / Long: 31.429137, -110.996465

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

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