Archive for the ‘San Pedro Valley’ Tag

First Summer Hike In The Santa Catalina Mountains, June, 2015   Leave a comment

The remnants of Hurricane Andres moved into southern Arizona yesterday bringing clouds, scattered showers and cooler weather to the area. Hikers gathered at the Lower Butterfly parking at the Bigelow trailhead in a light rain to begin the Sabino Canyon Volunteer Naturalists (SCVN) first hike of the summer in the Santa Catalina mountains. By the time we began our scheduled 9:00 am hike to Leopold Point, the rain had stopped and we were able to complete the four mile hike without rain. Temperatures in the fifties and occasional strong wind gusts made wind-breaker jackets standard apparel, it was a perfect day for hiking in the Santa Catalina’s.



Hike to Leopold Point Images by kenne (Click on any image to see larger view in a slideshow format.)

Capturing The Moment — Oak Fire   2 comments

Forest Fire (1 of 1)-2 blog framedSmoke from the Oak Forest Fire Framed by a Tree Burned Ten Years Ago in the Santa Catalina Mountains.

Forest Fire (1 of 1) blogThe Oak Fire Northeast of the San Pedro Valley as Seen from Oracle Ridge Trail in the Santa Catalina Mountains,
the Smaller of Two Forest Fires Currently Burning in Arizona. A larger wildfire, the San Juan Fire
is Burning near the White Mountains Town of Vernon.
— Images by kenne

Hiking To Leopold Point   Leave a comment

Friday Hikers (1 of 1)-15 II blog

Hiking to Leopold Point — Images by kenne (Click on any of the tiled images for a larger view in a slideshow.)

SCVN Mt. Lemmon Summer Hikes Have Begun

The SCVN lead Friday Summer Hikes started June 6th on Mt. Lemmon. Twenty hikers gathered at the lower Butterfly Trailhead for a 3.9-mile hike to Leopold Point, a big boulder lookout over the San Pedro Valley. This first hike of the summer season was lead by Ricki Mensching , the coordinator of the summer hiking program.

The Friday Hikes have a history that goes back to 1992, when Dick Toups and other SCVN members (Bob Porter, who started the Mt. Lemmon Nature Walks; BJ Martin; Heidi Schewel; Jim Martin) started the Mt. Lemmon Volunteer Interpreters (MLVI). Since the MLVI was never an official organization operating under the Forest Service, the group was ask to not use the name Mt. Lemmon Volunteer Interpreters. However, since the MLVI members were also SCVN members, the summer hikes have continued under SCVN.

“I truly believe that one of the nicest things that a person can do
is to share something special with another.
What better way to do that than to lead people
through a peaceful forest with all that it offers,
somethings to some really spectacular views.”

– Dick Toups


(Parts of this posting are from “Mt. Lemmon Volunteer Interpreters – History of An Unofficial Organization,” by SCVN member, Ricki Mensching)


The Sky Above, The Earth Below — An Abundance Of Beauty Between   2 comments

Butterfly Trail July 2013View of Oracle Ridge from Butterfly Trail on the north slope of the Santa Catalina Mountains.

Butterfly Trail July 2013Decade old burn area recovering nicely on the north side of the Santa Catalina Mountains. — Images by kenne

The Santa Catalina Mountains represent the “great escape” for year-round residents and visitors in Tucson, providing a refreshing escape from the desert’s summer heat. Surrounded by the Santa Cruz Valley to the southwest and the San Pedro Valley to the northeast , much of the mountains are still recovering from the 2002 Bullock Fire (28,957 acres) and the 2003 Aspen Fire (84,750 acres). To put those acres into perspective, the total acreage of the Santa Catalina Mountains is 128,000. Even so, there is a lot of beauty in the mountains that beckon us to this mountain Shangri-La. Recent rains have reduced the chances of forest fires in the Catalinas. 

One of the trials on the north slope provides a striking hike in a pine forest with beautiful views of the San Pedro Valley to the north. 


Hiking Green Mountain Trail To Guthrie Peak   3 comments

Green Mountain Trail

A Panoramic View of the San Pedro Valley from the Green Mountain Trail in the Santa Catalina Mountain (north).

Green Mountain Trail
View from the Green Mountain Trail south toward Tucson with Thimble Peak in the crosshairs. Thimble Peak is the Highest Point in Sabino Canyon. — Images by kenne
Click here to see a slideshow of  photos taken on this SCVN lead hike last week.

Hiking The Crystal Springs Trail Before The Much Needed Monsoon Rains   2 comments

The continuing lack of rain on Mt. Lemmon is causing many plants to lose their leaves.

Some of the ferns are under stress.

Hikers are pondering the piece of machinery on the log — it wasn’t there last year.

Usually there is at least some water trickling over this rock formation.

Still, the view along the Crystal Springs Trail is beautiful, even with some smoke over the San Pedro Valley from the Fox Wildfire at the northeast end of the Rincon Mountains. — Images by kenne


Capturing the Moment — Barnum Rock   7 comments

Barnum Rock — Image by kenne (Photo Set) 

Last friday, lead my naturalist Edi Moore, we started our hike from Palisades on Mt. Lemmon. We hike to the top of the trail, turning right to Incinerator Ridge. (The overlook was where Summerhaven dumped their garbage years ago.)   We again turned right at Leopold Point or as some call it Peck Basin Overlook and hiked to Barnum Rock. The hike provided many picturesque views of the San Pedro Valley below.

The weather was great, providing plenty of photo opts. (Click on Photo Set above to see a slideshow.)


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