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Presidio Santa Cruz de Terrenate, AZ

Guide 2 Triplogs  0 Topics
  0 of 5 
no permit
17 2 0
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Difficulty 0.5 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance Lasso-Loop 2.7 miles
Trailhead Elevation 3,956 feet
Elevation Gain 79 feet
Accumulated Gain 79 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 1 - 2 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 3.1
Interest Historic & Perennial Creek
Backpack No
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12  2021-11-21
Terrenate Presidio and Vicinity
17  2018-02-23 Steph_and_Blake
author avatar Guides 100
Routes 63
Photos 2,548
Trips 184 map ( 820 miles )
Age 73 Male Gender
Location Grand Junction, CO
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred Nov, Dec, Jan, Feb
Seasons   Early Autumn to Late Spring
Sun  5:36am - 7:18pm
Official Route
0 Alternative

For history buffs
by Steph_and_Blake

A 3-mile hike in open desert to the ruins of a former Spanish military fortress, or presidio.

Please stay on the path when near the ruins to preserve what's left of them.

Overlooking the San Pedro River, the Presidio Santa Cruz de Terrenate was built in 1776 by Hugo Oconor for King of Spain Charles III. Considered one of the best-preserved sites of military forts ranging from Louisiana to California, it takes a bit of imagination to envision the site today. The presidio was never finished as a result of corruption, lack of crops, raids on the horse stables, and continuous surprise attacks carried out by the Apaches. The fortress was abandoned in 1780 but was used for a short time by the US Army in 1878.

Starting from the parking area, the fairly level hike heads due west towards the San Pedro River. The bare dirt path is flanked by mesquite, acacia, bursage, creosote, cane cholla, and numerous other plant species found in the Sonoran desert. After 2/3 mile, the straight path veers to the left and takes you up onto a former railroad bed. You take a right upon reaching the railroad bed and follow it for approximately another 1/3 miles to a sign on the left. From the sign, you follow a ½-mile loop in a clockwise direction past about a dozen signs detailing the ruins, what might have taken place in each structure, and what life was like for those living and working within the fortress. Upon finishing the loop, return to your vehicle by retracing your steps along the railroad bed and the dirt path.

Not being interested in this sort of history I can't say that I would go to this site again. But, it was nice to get out, stretch our legs, and see another part of the beautiful, and the varied state of Arizona.

Water Sources
None, unless you venture down to the San Pedro River.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

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

2018-02-26 Steph_and_Blake
    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.

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    FR / Dirt Road / Gravel - Car Okay

    To walk/tour
    From Tucson, take I-10 east. Get on AZ-90 South at Benson. Get on AZ-82 East at Whetstone. Drive 8 miles to In Balance Ranch Road and take a left (north). Go another 1.8 miles (just past Trails End Rd) and the parking area will be on your right.
    page created by Steph_and_Blake on Feb 26 2018 1:08 pm
    90+° 8am - 6pm kills
    Avoid Heat Illness - stay cool

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