This ride loops around the outer section of the Tucson Mountains, going south of Cat Mountain along the Ajo Highway, and north of Safford Peak along Twin Peaks Road.
It basically follows these roads: Grande, Mission, Ajo Highway, Kinney, Sandario, Twin Peaks, Silverbell, with a few connectors thrown in.
It’s not a particularly interesting or fun ride and it’s worth doing only so you can have done the Tucson Mountains Outer Loop. The Inner Loop is much more interesting and prettier.
The loop is about 46 miles with 1,320 feet of climbing.
Here’s the map and profile on Ride with GPS. Note that it shows the loop being ridden twice, once in each direction. If you are going to do it only one way I’d recommend clockwise. I rode it both ways in October, 2022.
I parked on Avenida del Convento, close to the intersection with Cushing. Parking is free here all day at the weekends. From here you can ride west on Cushing to join the Outer Loop on Grande Ave.
I won’t describe all the various turns you make as you can find that on the Ride with GPS map. You can also extend the ride if you like by adding the enjoyable McCain Loop off Kinney road.
Links and Other Clicks
Other rides in the Tucson Mountains area are:
The Tucson Mountains Inner Loop, which goes over Gates Pass and Picture Rocks Road
The Five Fingers of West Tucson, which does 5 climbs from Silverbell road into the Tucson Mountains.
The Seven Snakes of Silverbell, a longer and harder version of the Five Fingers ride, which does 7 climbs from Silverbell.