Finally got a chance to visit Mica! Catalinas are still my favorite Tucson destination yet I'm loving the Rincon Mountains thus far!
After making a poor decision to hike the night before I found myself jittery and unable to sleep with tired legs. Just the ticket for a hike like this one. Luckily the ascending grade turned out to be very forgiving. We passed a couple small groups for the Bioblitz and their larger deserted camp while they were out working. All seemed very friendly and pleasant to chat. The temps just barely held to reasonable on the climb up as it's still an above average Oct. Poor decision number two came when I consumed a cheese stick that expired in July...lol It destroyed me for a few hours yet all was good before the day was over.
Turning into Manning Camp got a pleasant surprise and saw Macewen for the first time in over three years. After Manning we had some difficulties finding the route. It's not marked very well for the AZT or simply stating which way to Italian Spring Trail #95 for that matter. On the same token I didn't even check out a map prior so fair is fair. It all worked out, now looking at the route I understand the layout. It is such a beautiful forest in those upper reaches, I really enjoyed that part.
The first views heading down Italian Spring #95 are flat out breath taking. Along with similar eye popping views on the route down. The entire thing is steeper heading down than I prefer. The upper end in the National Park is overgrown. Once you pass through the gate it has recently been worked. Very much appreciated I might add!!! I do wonder on some of the soft aerated soil getting washed out in the first major rain. Sizable stretches are shelf cut into dirt with no means to hold it in place. Though I'm no trail expert and perhaps it's not finished either. One thing for sure it was a blessing over the upper portion!
The temps for the day turned out pretty good for the entire hike albeit warm heading up. Thanks guys for another excellent hike. I look forward to more Rincon hikes in the years to come. It was great seeing all the other ranges from above. Nick knows his stuff and each identification brought on an "oh yeah, ooo ahhh" moment. I feel very fortunate to have visited so many.