Archive for the ‘Madera Canyon’ Tag

A Fall Hike In Madera Canyon   2 comments

Madera Canyon is always a beautiful canyon in which to hike especially in the fall when the
Arizona Sycamores are in color. This SCVN Friday hike, in the Santa Rita Mountains,
provided a nice contrast to our usual hikes in the Santa Catalina Mountains.

Madera Canyon-6-72This image is looking down on Madera Canyon below some of the higher pikes in the Santa Ritas
(The highest is Mt. Wrightson on the right with an elevation of 9,453 feet.)
Our hike began down near a dried-up creek bed, then taking us up along the canyon’s edge.
What a beautiful day to be hiking with friends and nature lovers.

Images by kenne

“Don’t walk in front of me… I may not follow
Don’t walk behind me… I may not lead
Walk beside me… just be my friend”

― Albert Camus

 

 

Weed Behind A Stone   1 comment

Super Trail Vista (1 of 1) art blog“Weed Behind A Stone” — Image by kenne

Weed behind a stone

Tween a rock and mountain view,

Some call it heaven.

— kenne

Capturing The Moment — Mountain Marigold   1 comment

Wildflower (1 of 1) Art blogMountain Marigold, Madera Canyon (October 27,2014) — Image by kenne

Mountain Marigold

Competing with fall colors,

All winners here.

— kenne

Morning Clouds Moving On, Madera Canyon   4 comments

Sunrise (1 of 1) blog

 

Sunrise (1 of 1)-2 blog

 

Sunrise (1 of 1)-3 blogMorning Clouds Moving On, Madera Canyon in the Santa Rita Mountains — Images by kenne

An early morning walk is a blessing for the whole day.

— Henry David Thoreau

 

The Desert Spiny Lizard’s Cousin   3 comments

Mountain Spiny Lizard at Roger’s Rock In Madera Canyon, Santa Rita Mountains — Images by kenne
(Click on any of the images for larger view in a slideshow format.)

For those of us who live near the Santa Catalina Mountains, Madera Canyon in the Santa Catalina Mountains is about an hour and twenty minutes drive. There are a lot of reasons to love the canyon, rated the third best birding destination in the United States. Yesterday, the Monday Morning Milers hiked one of the canyon’s many trails to Roger’s Rock where I have captured many vista photographs in the past and did the same yesterday. One of the things that made this hike different from past hikes was seeing the mountain spiny lizard captured in this posting. The colors of this guy were very prominent, sunning in the 6,500 feet elevation cool mountain air. I have learned that every hike, even on the same trail, has something new and impressive to see. 

— kenne

You’ve got to get out
and pray to the sky
to appreciate the sunshine;
otherwise you’re
just a lizard
standing there
with the sun shining on you.

— Ken Kesey

Appalachian Mountain Club Hike Mt Wrightson In Madera Canyon   Leave a comment

Appalachian Mountain Club Hike Mt Wrightson In Madera Canyon — Images by kenne
(Click on any of the images to see larger view in slideshow format.)

This hike by the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) was their last in the Tucson area. We are pleased to have been able to hike with them and share our (SCVN) knowledge and experience of hiking the trails of southern Arizona.

This is the last in a series of postings on the AMC visit to the Sonoran Desert, so let’s remember for a moment . . .

Let’s remember for a moment,
the trail head gatherings,
the greetings, the smiles,
the joy of another hike.

Let’s remember for a moment,
the steep climbs, the switchbacks,
the majestic views at the top,
the masterful returns.

Let’s remember for a moment,
the trail fellowship,
sharing who we are
and common interests.

Let’s remember for a moment,
the pools near mountain trails,
resting tired feet in the cold water,
watching others jump in.

Let’s remember the moment,
the hike alone ridges of granite
and the juxtapositions of water-loving
and drought-tolerating plants.

Let’s remember for a moment,
the rich biodiversity of the Sonoran Desert
which the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
illustrates through its ecological theater.

Let’s remember for a moment,
the images captured by
our mind’s eye,
lasting images to share.

Let’s remember for a moment,
that which we have added
to life’s experiences forming
a better understanding of self.

Let’s remember for a moment,
the desire, the drive to see 
what lies just over the next ridge,
on the other side of the mountain.

Let’s remember for a moment,
lots of mountains, few streams —
all dry this time of year, and my
turning back at the base of Old Baldy.

Let’s remember for a moment,
my friends from New England,
“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome,
dangerous, leading to the most amazing view.” *

— kenne

* Edward Abbey

We Scar The Things We Love   2 comments

Madera Canyon Panorama April 11, 2014 blog framedA Panorama View Down Through Madera Canyon In The Santa Rita Mountains South of Tucson, Arizona.
(Note the light color of mining tailings surrounding ponded water.)
— Image by kenne

We Scar The Things We Love

 

Always there is something worth trekking

in the Sonoran Desert.

Sometimes the treks start early in the morning,

driving across the Tucson basin over

occasional low water crossings and cattle guards

on narrow roads, stopping for big yellow buses.

 

A canyon road leads out of Green Valley,

a quite peaceful community

along the banks of the Santa Cruz River

covered with oaks and walnut trees

and a rich history with the Tumacacori Mission

to the south and San Xavier del Bac to the north.

 

Crossing one-lane bridges through a grassland bajada, 

the road climbs toward Madera Canyon

nestled between Mt. Wrightson and Mt. Hopkins

on the eastern slop of the Santa Rita Mountains,

forming one of the Sonoran desert’s Sky Islands,

an oasis above this bowl-shaped canyon.

 

Although some are called “Friends of Madera Canyon”

all visitors, be they hikers, birders, walkers,

or just those relaxing at one of the beautiful vistas

share a love of nature and being outdoors,

forming a friendship that helps bond 

memoirs of a shared love.

 

“All the while jumbled memories flirt out on their own,”

intruding on nature’s beautiful vistas

where a river once ran through, now shadowed

by a high wall of tailings surrounding a pond,

altering nature’s beautiful vistas above the canyon,

producing lasting scars to the sky above, the earth below.

 
— kenne
 

Capturing The Moment — Horned Lizard   4 comments

Horned Lizard (1 of 1) blog framed

Horned Lizard (1 of 1)-2 blog framedHorned Lizard (Horny Toad) In Madera Canyon (April 11, 2014) — Images by kenne

 

May The Spirit Of The Hiking Stick Be With You Always.   6 comments

Palisades Trail August 2013Monday Morning Milers Celebrate Don Fletcher’s (center) 89th Birthday — Images by kenne

In the spring of 2011 I began hiking with a group that called themselves the Monday Morning Milers (MMM). I first learned about the MMM from neighbor, Louise Glaysher, who invited me to hike with the group. After my first hike with MMM, I wrote in a blog posting April 13, 2011: “One of the things we love about living in Tucson is if you tire of the desert, within less than an hour you can be in the tree-line mountains. Madera Canyon, located about 65 km (40 mi) southeast of Tucson, Arizona, makes a large dent in the northwest face of the Santa Rita Mountains.” 

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Images by kenne

The mountains surrounding Tucson provide many hiking trails for people who love the outdoors. Most in the MMM have been hiking together for many years and know well most trails in southern Arizona — they love hiking so much that some of the guys, now in their eighties, also hike on Friday’s. The elder of the MMM is Don Fletcher, who had his 89th birthday this past Sunday, so after this Monday’s hike on the Palisades Trail in the Santa Catalina mountains we had a surprise potluck luncheon at Middle Bear picnic area. Keeping this a surprise was not easy, since Don and some of the other guys often have lunch at Viv’s Cafe at the base of Catalina highway after hiking in the Catalinas. 

Don and the other octogenarians in the MMM set an admirable example to anyone who loves the outdoors and hiking. To see Don and the other octogenarians hiking, albeit at their pace, most with walking sticks not the more modern hiking poles, sets an example I hope to be doing in my 80’s. I’m already looking forward to posting on this blog our celebrating his 90th after a Monday morning hike.

Although only 15 of the MMM were able to make Monday’s birthday celebration, birthday wishes were passed on from those not able to attend.

kenne

Palisades Trail August 2013

May the spirit of the hiking stick be with you always, Don.

Capturing The Moment — Madera Canyon   2 comments

Madera Canyon  13162 blogMadera Canyon on the northwestern face of the Santa Rita Mountains in the Coronado National Forest — Image by kenne

Treat the earth well,

It was not given to you by your parents,

It was loaned to you by your children.

Indian Proverb

 

Capturing The Moment — Hedgehog Cactus Flowers In Madera Canyon   3 comments

“The Triad” — Hedgehog Cactus Blooms, Image by kenne

On a recent hike on the Dutch John Trail in Madera Canyon (Santa Rita Mountains) we spotted few flowers. This beautiful triad of hedgehog cactus blossoms was an exception. Nessaled in the fallen leaves of the surrounding trees at the 4,500 foot level, I was able to capture an image different from the dirt and rock desert floor.

kenne

Contemplating Earth’s Beauty   3 comments

“Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.” — Rachel Carson

A View of Tucson From The Mouth of Pima Canyon, January 7, 2012. (Notice air pollution south of Tucson near the Santa Rita Mountains.) — Image by kenne

When we decided to move from Houston to Tucson, there were many factors considered, not the least of which were beautiful blue skies, clean air, and nature at its finest. When considering Tucson, we also were looking at Santa Fé for the same reasons. It just so happens that both cities are in the top 25 cleanest for long-term particle pollution – Santa Fe #2 and Tucson #6.

Tucson is in Pima County in southern Arizona with a county population of over one million, and to their credit, much has been done to maintain a balance between economic growth, while responsibly managing the pollution factors. One of Arizona’s most prominent industries is copper mining (along with cotton, cattle, climate, and citrus — the 5 C’s), making it an essential part of the economy. However, “the historical conduct of the copper mining industry in the state has turned this sector into a pariah,” alienating much of the public. Today, this alienation is evident in the public’s reaction to the proposed Rosemont Copper Project, which would create an open-pit mine roughly 30 miles south of Tucson in the Santa Rita Mountains.

Although there are many natural causes of air pollution, most are the result of human activities, which have been scientifically documented over the years. In Rachel Carson’s 1962 book, Silent Springshe wrote, “Only within the moment of time represented by the present century has one species — man — acquired significant power to alter the nature of the world.” The power to alter nature can have both good and bad results. In seeking approval, Rosemont is addressing the problems (adverse consequences) of past mining companies.   If approved, only time will tell if Rosemont will create water problems, air pollution, and a massage tailings pile mess like the one the mining industry has created west of Green Valley.

It can be done right by demonstrating our mastery over ourselves, not over nature. With that in mind, you might agree with Hugh Holub statement in the tucsoncitizen.com “. . . instead of trying to run Rosemont out of Pima County, I suggest local leaders ought to do everything possible to help Rosemont create a 21st-century responsible mining project, and then use the precedents achieved with Rosemont to shove them down the throats of the other mining companies in the county that continue to operate like this was the 19th century.” Sounds reasonable, but why do I keep hearing over and over in my ears, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” How many times are we going to be foolish?

kenne

In the end, can jobs make up for ruined beauty?

View of Green Valley and The Tailings Pile To The West From Madera Canyon in The Santa Rita Mountains — Image by kenne

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