Page Type Page Type: Mountain/Rock
Location Lat/Lon: 32.37300°N / 110.93°W
Additional Information Elevation: 4910 ft / 1497 m
Sign the Climber's Log


Unnamed 4910 - locally known as "the Cleaver" - is a jagged, rocky ridge located on the Pusch Ridge. The Pusch Ridge itself is a formation which forms the far southwestern boundary of Tucson's Catalina Mountains. West of the ridge, the Catalinas drop off into the Oro Valley, north of Tucson. On its east side, Pusch Ridge slopes down into Pima Canyon. The ridge is comprised of a number of peaks which grow progressively higher as the ridge travels northeast into the Catalinas. These summits are, from southwest to northeast: Pusch Peak, the Cleaver , Bighorn Mountain, Table Mountain, UN 6020, and UN 5985. Soon after this the Pusch Ridge turns south and merges with the massif of Mt. Kimball.The Cleaver from Pima Canyon 
 While all of these summits can be reached from the west (Oro Valley) side, the nearest trail is Pima Canyon. This route follows the wash between Pima Canyon and the huge mass of Prominent Point to the east. Pima Canyon trail will get you close to the ridge, but unfortunately a lot of bushwhacking is still necessary. The climb of UN 4910 starts out as off-trail hiking through shindaggers, catclaw, and many other varieties of cactus... and finishes on the loose rock of the Cleaver itself. Due to these difficulties, the Cleaver is not often approached and even more seldom climbed. However, for the persistent (or masochistic!) the summit rewards you with magnificent views of the southern Arizona desert to the west and the Catalinas to the east.


Despite its relatively low elevation and close proximity to both Pima Canyon trail and Tucson, climbing the Cleaver is no simple matter. The rock is ungodly loose and I know a number of climbers who've had holds and boulders let go on them. There have been quite a few injuries and at least one well-publicized climbing death in Pima Canyon. As recently as September 2004, a hiker was badly injured here and had to be evacuated by air.Here's a link to that hiker's story, provided by SP's PeakMule.

Getting There

The Cleaver is best approached from Pima Canyon. To get to Pima Canyon, take Tucson's Skyline Drive, a major road that parallels the Catalinas just south of the foothills. Skyline turns into Ina road here; the intersection of Ina and Christie is just west and is also on this map. At that intersection, go north on Christie. This street dead-ends at Magee. Turn right here, and park at the lot (it's called the Iris Dewhirst trailhead) straight ahead of you.

Red Tape

No dogs are allowed on the Pima Canyon trail. Furthermore, off-trail hiking - which is necessary to reach the summit of the Cleaver - is prohibited from January 1 - April 30th, as this area is home to a number of bighorn sheep.

The Highest Catalina Summits

RankPeakElevation7.5 minute Quadrangle
1Mount Lemmon9,157Mt. Lemmon
2Mount Bigelow8,540Mount Bigelow
3Marshall Peak8,300Mount Lemmon
4Cathedral Rock7,957Mount Lemmon
5Green Mountain7,904Mount Bigelow
6Samaniego Peak7,700Mount Lemmon
7UN 76937,693Mount Bigelow
8Window Peak7,468Mount Lemmon
9Rose Peak7,303Mount Bigelow
10UN 7281 "Guthrie Mountain"7,281Mount Bigelow
11Mt. Kimball7,258Oro Valley
Mule Ears7,060Mount Lemmon
12Rattlesnake Peak6,653Sabino Canyon
13Prominent Point6,628Tucson North
14UN 65126,512Agua Caliente Hill
15Apache Peak6,441Oracle
Finger Rock6,420Tucson North
16Table Mountain6,265Oro Valley
17UN 61916,191Agua Caliente Hill
18Airmen Peak6,100Agua Caliente Hill
19UN 60606,060Mount Bigelow
20UN 60536,053Mount Bigelow
Clicking on the small picture by a peak will take you to a picture of that peak.Clicking on an underlined peak will take you to that peak's page on SummitPost.An elevation in red is interpolated.A more expansive list of the Catalina summits can be found here.

When To Climb

Summer temperatures make this an undesirable climb during most of May, June, July, August, and September. Likewise, the off-trail prohibition makes this climb illegal in the late winter and spring. Therefore the best times are the months of October, November, and December.
The Cleaver, with Pusch Peak... 
Pusch Ridge. Pusch Peak looms behind the Cleaver.


Camping is allowed here; however there are very few campsites in Pima Canyon below the cutoff for the Cleaver. Furthermore, the brevity of the climb is such that making a camp is unnecessary.


Here is the website for the Coronado National Forest. You can also call them at 520-749-8700.

Miscellaneous Info

While the Cleaver does not have enough prominence to be considered a "true" peak by the 300 ft. rule, it is nevertheless a difficult climb - more difficult than many of the higher Catalina summits - and a worthy objective.

Anything else?

If you've got anything to add, add it here. I'll check it out as soon as I can.



Children refers to the set of objects that logically fall under a given object. For example, the Aconcagua mountain page is a child of the 'Aconcagua Group' and the 'Seven Summits.' The Aconcagua mountain itself has many routes, photos, and trip reports as children.