Archive for the ‘Mica Mountain’ Tag

Hiking to Manning Camp   Leave a comment

Moonrise Over The Black Mountains — Photo-Artistry by kenne

 

We reached Mica Mountain as the sun was setting and set up camp two hours out from Manning Camp; our expected goal where we would get water and spend the evening. However, we did not have enough water to spend two nights in the mountains, so we decided we would turn back in the morning. Before setting up camp we watched the sunset and the moonrise.

Cold out! Feels like winter as we crawl into our sleeping bags. It must be the altitude. The full moon provided light, no warmth. The night was long. The tarp above us was attached at only three corners since Tom wanted one loose to flop in the wind, making noise that would keep the bears away.

After a long night of wind-driven noise and cold temperatures, we broke camp early to arrive back at the trailhead before the expected temperatures in the mid-nineties. As we reached a lower elevation, we could contact Tom’s wife, Pat, to give her our expected arrival time at the trailhead. Once we got our stuff in the car, all we could think of was going to Risky Business for a cold beer and French fries with mayo.

— kenne

Tom Markey Past Away on August 17, 2022, RIP   6 comments

Tom Taking A Moment to Rest Before Setting Up Camp on Mica Mountain (April 2012) — Image by kenne

Remembering So Much, Yet So Little

We walked together as brothers
His a shuffled pace totaling
Many unnumbered miles
Remembering so much, yet so little

Have known him for the last ten years
Reminding me of my brother,
It seemed like a lifetime
Remembering so much, yet so little

When we first met
We were in a hiking group
For me, all were strangers
Remembering so much, yet so little

He had that something
We all feel but can’t explain
As with the wistfulness of used books
Remembering so much, yet so little

Hiking dusty trails, stirred only by our steps,
A soft breeze unable to lift
The dust above our boots
Remembering so much, yet so little

Sharing a love of the wild
To hear sounds, see vistas
In the desert and sky islands
Remembering so much, yet so little

He was born with a feel for the moment
Making use of the incidentals
Whether invited or not
Remembering so much, yet so little

An eye for beauty and form
Where nothing is perfect
And everything is perfect.
Remembering so much, yet so little

Always ready to go farther afield
Looking for new trails – such as
The Hidden Pasture Trail
Remembering so much, yet so little

Meticulously researching new adventures
Was a hobby driven by the belief
One knows the country through direct contact
Remembering so much, yet so little

Possessing a diverse love of life
Sharing stories of youthful conquests
As the sunsets only to be replaced by a full moon
Remembering so much, yet so little

Dare not wave the punctual tissue of farewell
He would reply with an insouciant shrug
Therefore, I drink to you, my brother
Remembering so much, yet so little

For this is a path we will all take
On the Hidden Pasture Trail
It’s all part of nature’s plan
Remembering so much, yet so little

— kenne

Italian Springs Trail Panorama   Leave a comment

Italian Springs Trail Leading To The Base Of Mica Mountain In The Rincon Mountains East Of Tucson (March 18, 2013) — Panorama by kenne

set camp at the top

needing a restful night’s sleep

watching the sunset

— kenne

Sunset from Mica Mountain — Image by kenne

Catalina Sunset   Leave a comment

Italian SpringsCatalina Sunset (View from Mica Mountain of the Santa Catalina Mountains) — Photo-Artistry by kenne

Whatever satisfies the soul is truth.

— Walt Whitman

Mica Mountain Sunset   6 comments

Italian SpringsMica Mountain Sunset — Computer Art by kenne

I love Rincon hikes

Camping on Mica Mountain.

What is not to love?

— kenne

A “Simple Song” To Live By   Leave a comment

Italian SpringsThey’ll Love You When You’re All Alone — Image by kenne

“Simple Song”

It’s a simple song for simple feeling
You see the moon and watch it rise
Across the continent the night-bird sings
And somewhere someone hears its cry

So disillusioned
Keep your head down
If you do they’ll never know
You’ll have no answers to their questions
And they will have to let you go

And disenfranchised
Revolution
They’ll take away by right what’s yours
And make you martyrs of your own cause
When they don’t know what cause it’s for

And all deserted
Stand alerted
They’ll love you when you’re all alone
But you find a red rose in the morning light
You wait the night and find it gone

So hear my words with faith and passion
For what I say to you is true
And when you find the one you might become
Remember part of me is you

— Lyle Lovett

Mica Mountain In The Rincon Mountains   6 comments

Mt Bigelow 07-15-13Mica Mountain in the Rincon Mountains with clouds building up over the mountains. View from Mount Bigelow in the Santa Catalina Mountains
— Image by kenne

Panorama Views From Italian Springs Trail   2 comments

Italian Springs 2013Mica Mountain In The Rincon Mountains

Italian Springs 2013Mica Mountain In The Rincons On The Left, The Tucson Basin On The Right

Italian Springs 2013Santa Catalina Mountains From Reddington Pass

Italian Springs 2013Santa Catalina Mountains On The Left With The Galiuro Mountains In The Distance On The Right

Italian Springs 2013Fellow Photographer Hikers, Dave, Dory and Margaret — Images by kenne

Backpacking The Italian Springs Trail To Manning Camp   9 comments

None of my outdoor experiences — hiking, river canoeing/rafting, and camping– involved backpacking. So, when one of my hiking buddies, Tom Markey, asked if I would be interested in backpacking from Redington Pass to Manning Camp via the Italian Springs Trail, I jumped at the possibility. I learned later that this is a hike Tom had talked about for ten years — guess we finally found someone willing to take it on with him — another crazy guy!

Although the road through Redington Pass is a very passable gravel road, Markey was hoping that our mutual friend, Tom’s truck, would be able to take us down a deeply rutted cattle road in his truck, shortening the fifteen-mile hike to Manning Camp by three miles. Unfortunately, as it turned out, the truck was not high enough to chance the old cattle road. So, strapping on our thirty-pound backpacks, we set off with Tom in the lead. 

Since I was nursing an often injured left angle, I was more than willing for Tom to set the pace. Having hiked with Tom many times, it was not unusual for me to drop off the pace because of stopping to take photos. However, it was generally easy for me to catch up — not this time. As we hiked on, I realized that Tom was trying to make up for the time we lost, having to hike the additional three miles.

Not far into the hike, Tom’s pace was slowed by this guy in the middle of the trail — causing a trail detour. This was the first of two snakes we spotted on the trail.

The trail led through several rolling ridges. Here you can see Mica Mountain in the distance (higher point to the left).

After about an hour, we reached the point where the cattle road would have taken us. As the sign indicates, the Italian Springs trail is part of the Arizona Trail.

After hiking several rolling ridges, we finally reached a point where the elevation allowed us a beautiful view back toward the Catalina Mountains. In the distance to the left is Tucson. Although a wilderness area, we are not far from the metropolitan Tucson area. You can get an idea of where we started by looking right down to the base of the Catalina Mountains..

As the trail got steeper, it led us into more trees among large boulders. At least the increased elevation was providing cooler temperatures. However, the climb was beginning to take its toll — rest stops were becoming more necessary in the 5% humidity.

Now late in the afternoon and with each slow, calculated step, it was becoming clear that we would not have enough time to complete the fifteen-mile hike to Manning Camp before dark — even on this “supermoon” night.

“What does the trail look like ahead,” Tom would ask. My standard response was, “It keeps going up!” We began to feel pain from muscles we thought we had lost years ago. Our priority had now become finding a flat area to camp, leaving us four miles short of the goal of reaching Manning Camp. By not reaching Manning camp, where water was available, it would be essential for us to conserve our water for the return hike tomorrow.

Finally, we reached an area at the base of Mica Mountain, which provided an open flat space where we could spend the evening. It also offered a great view of the sunset and, later in the evening, the rise of the “supermoon.”

Tired and with the sun setting, we decided to pass on preparing a warm meal and begin preparing the campsite. This would also help us conserve water, which was needed to reduce the occasional muscle cramps we had started to experience.

As Tom worked on the campsite, I captured a few sunset photos before assisting him. Cooler temperatures came with the setting sun, but the afternoon winds were to stay with us all night. The following images in this posting would have been of the supermoon rising in the east, but I was too tired to crawl out of the warm sleeping bag into the windy, cold mountain air. 

Morning brought a beautiful sunrise over the Rincon Mountains — this image looks down toward Redington Pass and the Catalinas. Anticipating hot temperatures in the past by mid-morning, we were eager to pack up the campsite and start down the trail.

Occasionally, we would turn to look back at Mica Mountain — “I can’t believe we did it!”

. . . and again.

With Mica Mountain framed in the background, Pat Markey took this photo of Tom and myself.

Finally, back at the trailhead, Pat was already there waiting — to our delight! She also had some much-needed water for us. We had been nursing what little water we had over the last several miles of our eleven-mile return from Mica Mountain. In our minds, the Italian Springs Trail lived up to its reputation of being the most challenging trail in the Tucson area. Completing the two-day backpacking hike was plenty of reward for two early seventy-year-old adventurers. However, there were moments when we were convinced that we were crazy to have taken on such a hike this time of year. 

Would we do it again? No! One time is plenty!

Was it worth it? Absolutely!

— kenne

(Click here to see a slideshow on Flickr.) 

View Video Clips From The Hike

(Taken with my Lumix camera — video & audio not as good as with my Canon VIKIA HF10 — at least I didn’t have to censor Tom.)

Capturing The Moment — The San Pedro Valley And Galiuro Mountains   Leave a comment

The San Pedro Valley And Galiuro Mountains — Image taken from Mica Mountain by kenne

Capturing The Moment — Sunset From Mica Mountain   2 comments

Sunset from Mica Mountain in the Rincon Mountains, going down over the Santa Catalina Mountains, May 5, 2012 — Image by kenne

Capturing The Moment — Bushed   4 comments

Along the Italian Springs Trail in The Rincon Mountains Above Redington Pass — Image by kenne

bushed

a trail cursed

and charmed

taking a breather

in the solitude

and shade

alligator junipers

mountain pines

overlooking

a big sky pass

scrambling time

and seasons

whence we came

where we went

Redington Road

to the plateau beneath

Mica Mountain summit

till you get there yourself

it remains our paradise

sharing our wanderlust

in this digital-based world

— kenne

%d bloggers like this: