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Sentinel Peak and Hiking

Updated on August 11, 2014


Sentinel Peak has played a vast importance in the agricultural and residential growth in the Southern Arizona city of Tucson. Rising to an elevation of 2,901 feet Sentinel Peak is made up of a series of volcanic rocks that represent the different types of volcanic activity, though the mountain itself is not a volcano.

Up until the 1930's the floodplain was used for agricultural fields. The underground ridge of rock, running to the east, once forced groundwater to the surface, making this perfectly suitable terrain to grow corn and beans. It is here that after being visited by Father Eusebio Francisco Kino the nearby Mission San Xavier del Bac was established and a sentinel stood on the top of the peak searching the horizon for raiding Apache warriors.

Why the reason for the "A"? In 1914 after the Arizona team beat out Pomona College in a big football game, a civil engineering student convinced one of his professors to create a class project assigning the "A" atop of Sentinel Peak.

A view from the basin
A view from the basin | Source

Sentinel Peak Park

Address: 1501 W Sentinel Peak Rd S, Tucson, AZ 85745

Phone: (520) 791-4873

Hours: Open today · 8:00 am – 8:00 pm

Hiking in Tucson

Sentinel Peak or "A" Mountain is a well known local and tourist location, boasting its prestigious views of downtown Tucson and the surrounding area.

There is a road leading up a considerable way to the summit, making it extremely easy to get to the "A" or find a place along the way to being your walk, hike, or biking adventure. Don't be shy, bring your dog along, they'll enjoy it as much as you do, I know mine sure do. To get to the peak take Sentinel Peak trail leading to the A on the Mountain or any side trails that head up Tumamoc Hill. There are many!

There is no fee for "A" Mountain. However there is an 8 pm. curfew.

Weather will be very similar to nearby Tucson, making it critical to stay hydrated and sun screened in the summer months. Be cautious of Monsoon season as random down pours may make getting out of the area difficult.

Area map

Satellite view of Sentinel Peak
Satellite view of Sentinel Peak | Source


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