Pena Blanca Lake ⋆ Tucson Audubon Skip to content
Categories: Field Trip
Red-naped Sapsucker by Rhett Herring

Pena Blanca Lake

Registration fee: $35/member, $50/non-member*

Trip difficulty: Moderate, some stairs and inclines; Walking Distance: About 1 to 1.5 miles; Trip Duration: 2 – 3 hours; Three pit toilets around the lake and one at the starting point in the picnic area.

With 282 species reported through eBird at this medium-sized lake in the Pajarito Mountains you never know what you may find. In December we’ll look for some of our resident and wintering birds like Ruddy Ducks, Red-naped Sapsucker, and Canyon Towhees and keep our eyes open for rarities. Limited to 10 participants.

Directions to start location: Upper Thumb Rock Picnic area, Pena Blanca Lake. The location is 70 Miles from downtown Tucson so allow about 90 minutes drive time to the Upper Thumb Rock Picnic area. Take I-19 South to Exit 12 in Rio Rico. Turn Right (West) on to Ruby Road and travel 10 miles on paved road, the first road you come to on the east side of the lake is not the one you want, so another half mile and the road splits, take the right turn into the Pena Blanca Lake area (AZ289 Forest service road) and follow the road around to the Upper Thumb Rock Picnic area.

Leader: Rob Rutledge (

*Why does this event cost money? Your generous support helps us to continue to offer an exceptional array of field trips and programming for the community

Register here beginning Jan 14, 7:00 AM.


Header Image: Red-naped Sapsucker by Rhett Herring

Join Waitlist




9:00 am - 12:00 pm


$35/member, $50/non-member

Trip Features

All Levels,
Outside Tucson,
Paid Trip,
Shade Available


Pena Blanca Lake

Upper Thumb Rock Picnic Area


Rob Rutledge