• Activities:

    Chillin, Photography, Swimming, Hiking

  • Skill Level:

    Intermediate

  • Season:

    Spring, Autumn, Winter

  • Trail Type:

    Out-and-Back

  • RT Distance:

    1.6 Miles

  • Elevation Gain:

    100 Feet

Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Waterfall
Wildlife
Swimming Hole

This is a short hike up the Tanque Verde wash to an 80 foot waterfall. There are many smaller waterfalls and swimming holes along the way.

This hike starts at the Lower Tanque Verde Falls Trailhead, which is a well marked dirt lot on the left side of Reddington Road. A 4x4 would probably make the last half mile or so easier when the road turns to dirt but I made it to the trailhead in a Toyota Carolla without any trouble, so don't let that hold you back. From here you will cross the road to the well worn trail which switchbacks from the ridge down into the wash.

If there is water running when you reach the wash at the bottom then the falls will definitely be flowing. Don't be discouraged by all of the picnicking families with their coolers at the bottom. The farther up the wash you go the less people you'll see as the hike becomes more difficult. You'll want to hang a left and head up the wash into the canyon. There is no specific trail you just have to pick your way along the creek bed. There is some scrambling over boulders and debris with many small waterfalls and swimming holes along the way.

After a long mile of scrambling you will reach a beautiful 30 foot waterfall that cuts through the granite. On the right hand side of this smaller falls there is a ledge where you can walk behind the waterfall. From here you'll also be able to see the star of the show which is an 80ft waterfall spilling over the canyon wall into a deep pool.

People do climb up the rock face to cliff jump and there is a rope swing from a tree next to the water. Just be aware that many people have died in this area, the granite gets slippery when wet and the currents are strong. Also, being in a canyon is very dangerous during the monsoon season when flash flooding can occur.

Pack List

  • Water
  • Sunscreen
  • Snacks
  • Camera
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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Great guide above. Second the warnings about deaths in the area, please be careful! On a weirder note there are little fish in the water that nibbled the dead skin off our feet, so free pedicures!

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

Lacie Griego

I am a travel nurse and a full-time RVer. My job lets me move around the US for 13 weeks at a time taking my home with me.

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