Best of Madera Canyon Feb2012
Lynn, the dogs, and I took a trip to a part of the world we've never been before - actually a tongue-in-cheek quest for Arizona Parrots (check out => http://www.nytimes.com/1995/05/30/scien ... all&src=pm
). So Madera Mexico isn't Madera Canyon, still a good excuse to check it out...
Madera Canyon Nature Trail
Old Baldy Half-Super Loop to Josephine Saddle
Super Trail #134
Old Baldy Trail #372
Up at dawn and packed the truck for a 2hr trek south to Madera Canyon on the north side of Mt. Wrightson (between Tucson and the Mexican border). The arrival at Madera Canyon somehow reminds me of another sky island, Mount Graham. After checking out the Madera Canyon Nature Trail, we ventured up to the end of the road and the network of Mt. Wrightson trails.
My National Parks Pass came in handy again (rather than pay the $5 day pass fee). When I parked my truck, the thermometer indicated 49degF. From the Old Baldy TH elevation of 5400ft, our crew made the 1700ft elevation gain and 2.5 miles to Josephine Saddle in good time. There were plenty of snow packed zones along the trail (most amusing for the dogs). Views from this 7100ft vantage point were satisfying, albeit chilly with the wind whipping through. With our Shi Tzu starting to object to the temperature, we trekked the 3.5 miles down the Super Trail #134 to complete the "half-loop".
I'd packed a "tail-gating" special to complete the day. I BBQ'd some dogs and burgs plus a couple of Cags taking advantage of the picnic area by the parking lot. Packed up and peaked at the truck thermometer - 49degF. Time to head home in the setting sun. Photos to follow...