With its distinctive profile and standing 1,500 ft high, Picacho Peak is difficult to miss, and was used as a landmark by early visitors to the area. Picacho Peak can be seen from Casa Grande to Northern Tucson. The park is on the I-10 (which roughly traces the old wagon route which passed the Peak in 1862) just 45 minutes from Tucson. You can walk the peak itself, or content yourself on one of the many hikes or shorter walks around the park. There is ample parking, restrooms and picnic facilities, and it is a good place to camp.
Picacho Peak marks the site of the westernmost battle of the American Civil War. In March each year there is a re-enactment of the battle of Picacho Pass, as well as other battles of the Civil War. It's an interesting fact that more people now attend the re-enactments then found in the actual battle!
As a place to visit today the park is known for its geological significance and varied animal and plant growth. The peak is the eroded remnant of a volcanic plug.
Picacho Peak State Park
The trails range fro the easy Children's Cave trail - just 0.2 miles with good informative signs to keep youngsters amused to the more difficult trails to the peak (Sunset Vista Trail at 3.1 miles, or the Hunter Trail at 2 miles), both difficult as you near the top.
Remember to take water with you, and beware of the heat, especially in the summer months.
The park is not huge, and can be a welcome break in the midst of a long desert drive.
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