Climbed up and down west side some years ago, probably on descent from Bighorn. This sucker is not a "real" summit, with only 190 +40
feet prominence. However it is a worthy side trip.
Looking at the topo, it appeared practical to hike to the top of Pusch Peak and then descend to the saddle with "The Cleaver." Unfortunately, what looked like nothing worse that a steep slope on the map turned out to be a series of step-wise cliffs. From my vantage point above I wasn't able to dope out a safe descent. Tried a few unsafe descents anyway, only to ultimately get cliffed out. I'll return via the Pima Canyon route.
The mountain does not see many visitors; the summit register had dates back to 1973. This SummitPost summit log doesn't seem to get much action either, so I should have some room to write a bit here.
I followed the wash, not the trail, in Pima Canyon on the way in. After leaving the wash and heading north towards the peak, the thorny Sonora Desert plants and trees made for my most painful bushwhacking (and cactuswhacking) adventure ever. Many thanks to juh33, for his advice here and here, recommending long, thick pants. I wore jeans (for the first time ever on a hike), and they really saved my legs. I am pretty cut-up above the waist though. Next time, Kevlar full-body suit.
Climbing the class-3, relatively thorn-free western slope to the summit was a good time. There are some excellent views from the ridge and summit of this mountain.
Leaving the summit, I made a point of rappelling down the northeast face, since I had carried fifteen pounds of rope and gear specifically for that purpose. The rappel was a blast and well worth carrying the gear. I had to kick some loose rocks off a ledge below me before I descended, so they wouldn't get knocked down by my rope when I was below. I wouldn't recommend climbing, rappelling, or even getting near the northeast face without a helmet. There is a lot of loose rock.
On the descent through the boulder field, south of the summit, as I began to put a fraction of my weight on a large boulder below me, it shifted and rolled out of its position and crashed into some rocks below it. I backed my weight off in time to avoid going with it. I've had boulders move before, but this one was huge. The top of it was roughly a square, and I measured it at about 3.5 of my size-13-shoe lengths in both directions; it measured over a square meter. Its third dimension was not quite as large, so its approximate volume was a cubic meter. At about 2.7g/cm3 for granite, the mass of the rock was about 2700kg (weight ~= 6000 pounds)!!! E-mail me if I calculated wrong. Imagine if someone had grabbed onto that thing from below on the way up. I'm glad I moved it.
Followed the trail in Pima Canyon for the return. It turns out the trail is a bit faster than scrambling through the wash. Because of the slow bushwhacking and time spent setting up a rappel, it took me most of the day to do this hike, but it was certainly a good day.
Up the NE face... one loose, sketchy move -
and down the W slopes. Encountered a swarm of bees as well.