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This is likely a great time to hike this trail!  Check out "Prefered" months below, keep in mind this is an estimate.

Oracle Ridge to Catalina Camp, AZ

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Guide 9 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Tucson > Tucson N
4 of 5 by 5
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Difficulty 2 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance One Way 4.2 miles
Trailhead Elevation 7,780 feet
Elevation Gain -2,496 feet
Accumulated Gain 2,026 feet
Avg Time One Way 2.5 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 10.95
Interest Historic & Seasonal Creek
Backpack Yes
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
22  2018-06-09 DarthStiller
15  2012-03-31
Oracle Ridge - AZT #12
7  2011-10-26
Red Ridge Trail #2
24  2011-04-20 writelots
13  2008-08-09 fricknaley
Author fricknaley
author avatar Guides 93
Routes 383
Photos 3,724
Trips 2,743 map ( 18,146 miles )
Age 43 Male Gender
Location Tucson, AZ
Co-Author Jeffshadows
co-author avatarGuides 28
Routes 20
Photos 672
Trips 169 map (1,088 Miles)
Age 41 Male Gender
Location Old Pueblo
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Oct, May, Sep, Apr
Seasons   Early Spring to Early Winter
Sun  6:08am - 6:27pm
2 Alternative
Flora Nearby
The other One Park Place
by fricknaley & Jeffshadows

Likely In-Season!
Summary: This is a hike starting from the Oracle Ridge trail and descending down to Dan Saddle, then cutting west on the Catalina Camp Trail #401 down to an old abandoned mine and settlement site complete with old cabins and relics. From here you can continue on down a short way to the intersection with the Red Ridge trail to return up to the Ski Valley road, or simply turn around and climb back up the way you came.

Hike: The first leg of this trail takes off from the Oracle Ridge trailhead, which is located on the Oracle Control road, just a short ways past the fire station. The Oracle Ridge trail #1 takes off from the signed trailhead and immediately skirts west around the base of Peak 8077. The trail is exposed the whole way down to the saddle. he area near the trailhead was heavily burned in the fire and is now slowly making itt's comeback. In the summer this area, especially on the west flank of 8077, will just be blanketed with wildflowers. As you descend more, you will run the ridgeline with expansive views out both east and west. The trail is a little overgrown but never hard to follow. After passing 8077 and descending a further way you can see Marble Peak out to your right sitting at 7654 feet, notice the trail heading along it's west flank. You will come to a level saddle called Stratton Saddle before cutting along the west flank of Marble Peak. Just past Marble Peak an old jeep track cuts back to your right and heads north up towards the top. Continue on down Oracle Ridge. You are more than halfway to Dan Saddle. To your left are outstanding views of the rugged Reef of Rock, and Red Ridge one ridge closer. You can see out forever east, north and west to sections of the Catalinas rarely, rarely seen. Soon thereafter the trail will intermittently break off the jeep track on the left and will be signed with small trail markers. The more narrow path drops down some switchbacks to rejoin the jeep track. It will break off to the left one more time then dump you back on the track at Dan Saddle, an intersection sitting at roughly 6880 feet. The Oracle Ridge trail continues on north straight ahead. A gated off road breaks off to your right and heads east ultimately descending down to Oracle Control Road. You want the signed Catalina Camp Trail #401 which heads to your left and descends west.

The Catalina Camp trail descends about 1200 feet along an overgrown old jeep track along a steep canyon or drainage the eventually leads down to an old mine and establishment. The track is overgrown and grassy. It switchbacks many times and on occasion can be a little hard to follow. There are a couple sections where narrow paths break off the road and descend. Sometimes they reconnect with the road lower down and sometimes they descend sharply and fade away. Some of these are likely gametrails or cattle paths heading down to the water below. I would recommend avoiding these and trying to stay on the old road. After about a mile of descending you can spot the old tin roof of the Camp down to your left. The road starts to switchback down more ernestly here towards the csbin. Just before you hit it, notice a small cairned path heading off right into the drainage to your right/north. This leads to a small old mine, complete with a narrow glory hole opening and still littered with old tools and sluices. This is presumably part of the Hartman Homestake Mines. Back on the path head down to the Catalina Camp, where an old small cabin and separate shed await you. Above the door to the cabin is the description "One Park Place" and within lie some strange things. There is an old, large chandelier inside among some canned goods and an old sink. There is a grill behind the main builing and a little farther down the path is a separate shed. If you continue on down the trail past the shed, it narrows down a little and passes through an amazing oak forest, paralleling the East Fork of Canada del Oro for a little ways. The East Fork may well be flowing during the rainy season. Just before the creek you will come to an old signed intersection marking the end of the Catalina Camp trail at 5680 feet and roughly 1.7 miles from Dan Saddle, 4.2 miles from your car. You can return the way you came or make a left here on the Red Ridge Trail #2 and cross the East Fork creek and climb roughly 3.1 miles (2480 feet) up to the Catalina Highway/Ski Valley Road, which you can walk about 1 mile back to your car to complete an excellent Catalina highcountry "backside" loop.

Check out the Triplogs.

Gate Policy: If a gate is closed upon arrival, leave it closed after you go through. If it is open, leave it open. Leaving a closed gate open may put cattle in danger. Closing an open gate may cut them off from water. Please be respectful, leave gates as found.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2008-08-10 fricknaley & Jeffshadows
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One-Way Notice
This hike is listed as One-Way.

When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

Most recent Triplog Reviews
Oracle Ridge to Catalina Camp
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I did a loop on the north side of the Catalinas in a place I have never been, before. Views are impressive, but the forest isn't coming back very well after the fire. Got back to my car well after dark the the air was cold! I think the best part of this hike is the upper end, both Red Ridge, and Oracle Ridge, as the oak and shrubby zones aren't super nice. Water in the creek, too.
Oracle Ridge to Catalina Camp
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This was the Passage needed to fill in the missing gap. With the completion of this passage, we've completed 732 contiguous miles, stretching from The Mexican border to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.

We started this passage with mixed feelings. Our hiking partner, Joe, for the entire AZT to this point, at the last minute had to back out with an injury . :stretch:
Dave had already arranged for us to be delivered to the top of Lemmon by one of the members of his church, (Thanks Dave and Fred), so we were locked.

We already knew this was going to be a pretty long day @ around 24-25 miles with a sizable AEG (Even though we were starting at 9,100' and going down to 4,400'). To our surprise, the gate to the top, was closed at the restaurant, so we added another 1.5 miles and 700' of AEG.

The weather was perfect most of the day. There were small patches of snow remaining at the top, but nothing on the trail. It did get a little warm in Wilderness of Rocks, but nothing too bad.

We all tried doing our best Joe imitations and jokes to mimic him being there, but when Denny busted into the classic "Cinder a Letter", we knew it was a lost cause.

Highlights for me on this hike was the Wilderness of Rocks trail. I'll never tire of all the unique bolder formations and running water. The Marshall Gulch Trail was sweet, as well as the views from Oracle Ridge are nothing to sneeze at.

Low lights included the 70 plus trees we had to hop over or go around on the way to lunch at Summerhaven, and the 40 more from there to the North TH at FR38. Also the Oracle Ridge trail can be loose, Rocky, and steep in places. No place for someone with a bum ankle.

We took a short (Steep) side trip to Rice Peak to enjoy the views for a moment.

Turning off the Oracle Ridge Trail and on Cody for the final push we donned our headlamps. A little over an out in the dark later and we were to our ride home. Dave had placed a car the previous day. :)

A huge thanks to Dave for getting the whole shuttle thing set up : app : and to his friend Fred for taking us to the top :y:

Get that ankle healed Joe Joe
Oracle Ridge to Catalina Camp
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Headed down the Red Ridge trail to Catalina Camp. Relaxed at the cabin for a bit, signed the book and took some good pics. Saw tons of FRESH bear scat all over the trail. It must be a popular place for bears because there was just sooo much of it, fresh and old. Decided last minute to head up Oracle Ridge instead of backtracking the way we came. It was very very windy. At some points the wind took my breath away. It was a difficult trail for me because of all the loose rocks but the views were totally worth it. At the Oracle Ridge TH I sat my butt down (with my exhausted dog) and waited for the "limo service", aka my boyfriend to walk up to Red Ridge TH and get the car. I marked this with a red paw print because all the loose pointy rocks were not so great for my dog. He still had a great time though and so did I :y:
Oracle Ridge to Catalina Camp
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Excellent loop hike with my dad and Jeff on a glorious day. This hike had it all. made it back to my truck with 5 seconds to spare before the rain started. Good thing since I left my sunroof open... :o

Permit $$
Visit this link for full details.

There are four specific day use areas that require a Coronado Recreational Pass or a National Pass/America the Beautiful Pass.
1) Sabino Canyon - located on the Santa Catalina Ranger District (520)749-8700
2) Madera Canyon - located on the Nogales Ranger District (520)281-2296
3) Cave Creek - located on the Douglas Ranger District (520)364-3468
4) Mt. Lemmon at 11 day use sites.

Catalina State Park $6 per day. Sabino Canyon Tram is $10 extra.

Coronado Forest
MVUMs are rarely necessary to review unless mentioned in the description or directions
Coronado Motor Vehicle Use Maps (MVUMs)

Map Drive
Paved - Car Okay

To hike
Take the Catalina highway from Tucson up into the mountains. Just before Summerhaven, near the very top, is Oracle Control Road to your right. Turn here, there are signs for a small firestation as another marker. Drive past the firestation, and about 200 yards down a gravel road to the marked trailhead.
page created by fricknaley on Aug 10 2008 9:35 pm
128 GB Flash Drive... $14
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