Great bushwhack from Sabino Canyon VC - only 4 of the 10 miles were on trail.
We started out on the road going into Sabino Canyon. After a half mile we turned north onto the Esperero Trail. Almost two miles into the journey we hit the ridge between Rattlesnake and Bird canyons. We followed a route/cairns up to the top of the ridge at point 3490. This part of the trek involved dodging a lot of bushes and cactus.
One we got on the top of the ridge, there was less vegetation for us to battle. From there we followed the ridge going northeast basically staying on top of the ridge until the ridge turned to go more north. At that point, we avoided the higher part of the ridge by contouring on the west side of the ridge.
The nearer we got to the peak, the steeper the route became. We had to do a bit of navigating around some big rocks and bushes. As the route was getting steeper, we found ourselves more on the east side of the ridge. The Santa Catalina Mountains, A Guide to the Trails and Routes
puts it all into perspective saying, "This is the hardest part but not because it is steep and roucky. The difficulty is finding routes through the thickets of manzanita and oack. Staying on the crest is no good. Most hikers drop down 50 feet or so on the east side and thrash their way to the top."
The top was a treat. We found we weren't the only ones who were enjoying the Peak - the lady bugs had beat us to the top. There are many rocks in which to hang out on and explore around. We had our lunch and a photo session. The views are outstanding in all 360 degrees!
We then came back the way we came. I found the journey down a bit rough as my right knee was killing me from the activities the day before. However, we made it out and were able hit Risky's for some after hiking refreshments.
Yay! I hiked over 100 miles for the month! That makes two months in a row