Picacho Peak is a prominent 3,374-foot peak along I-10 in southern Arizona. This hike provides exceptional 360-degree views of the valleys surrounding the peak as well as many other significant mountain peaks and ranges in the area. This hike is within the boundaries of Picacho Peak State Park. Parking is readily available, and this is an Arizona State park with an entrance free of $7.00 for day use. Camping, picnic areas, and a visitor center are also located within the park.
Hunter Trail is a 4-mile round trip hike to the top of Picacho Peak. The trailhead is on the north side of Barret Loop within the park. This is a difficult trail with steep inclines and steel cables, so gloves are recommend. The trail begins in an environment that is typical of Sonoran desert landscape with desert vegetation and varieties of cactus. The grade becomes steep within a quarter mile of the trailhead. The trail has many areas of sharp, bare rock, and in places arrows are painted on the rock to signal the direction of the trail, which can be difficult to follow in certain areas. The initial accent takes you to an area know as the saddle, which is near the mid-point of the hike. After the saddle the route makes a short descent on the south side of the peak prior to another steep accent that leads eventually to the top of Picacho Peak. A longer and more moderate route variation is available on the south side of the peak.