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Wild Burro to Cochie Spring, AZ

Guide 26 Triplogs  1 Topic
  3.1 of 5 
no permit
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Difficulty 2.5 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance Round Trip 11.3 miles
Trailhead Elevation 2,675 feet
Elevation Gain 620 feet
Accumulated Gain 2,236 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 5.5 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 22.48
Backpack No
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5  2022-02-20 Jim_H
5  2022-01-13
Cochie Canyon to Wild Burro Traverse
7  2020-01-01
Tortalitas loop
6  2019-11-26 Marana_hiker
25  2018-12-17
Tortolita Mountains Super Loop
5  2016-01-18 rvcarter
5  2015-04-25
Tortolitas Super Loop
13  2015-04-25
Tortolitas Super Loop
Page 1,  2
author avatar Guides 93
Routes 389
Photos 4,109
Trips 3,347 map ( 21,625 miles )
Age 46 Male Gender
Location Tucson, AZ
Historical Weather
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Preferred Mar, Nov, Feb, Jan → 8 AM
Seasons   Late Autumn to Late Spring
Sun  5:38am - 7:23pm
Official Route
5 Alternative

Cochie Cochie Coo!
by fricknaley

Cochie Canyon is one of the large, wide canyons spilling out of the southwestern Tortolitas. Some old ranches dot the canyon bottom/wash. The canyon is accessible from the network of trails taking off from the common Wild Burro trailhead, located off Dove Mountain Blvd. The negatives of this hike include a 1.4-mile wash walk to the point where the trails all split off into the mountains. This walk will take you right past the new eyesore Ritz-Carlton resort. That's just the way it is. The payoff is a relatively new small network of trails in the southwestern Tortolita Mountains. Some of these are very nice. The hike into Cochie Canyon is one of them.

I've written up the ubiquitous beginning of this hike on other Tortolita descriptions here on HAZ so I will just recapitulate the beginning section from those hikes.

Take the Wild Burro Trail out of the gravel parking lot. It immediately drops down into the wide, sandy wash. This will take you into the mouth of the canyon. The trail itself snakes along the wash, crossing over and coming back. You can take the trail or just go straight up the wash, it doesn't matter. The wash passes through a new high-end golf course and resort being built... we'll see how they preserve or reroute this passage. As you get closer to the mouth of the canyon, the vegetation perks up and the canyon walls slowly close in. After about 1.3 miles you reach several signed trailheads and the fun begins.

Hang a left at the signs for the Upper Javalina and Lower Javalina trails, with the Upper Javalina being the goal for now. Almost immediately, the Lower Javalina breaks off to the right, stay left on the Upper Javalina as it climbs up, and swings out west. This trail crosses over a steep descending gully, then switchbacks up the other sidewall to gain access up the north wall of Wild Burro Canyon. This trail is very pretty with a great assortment of cacti and flora, particularly when there has been ample rainfall. There are some unfortunate views of the Ritz along the lower section. The higher section climbs away onto the hilly ridgeline. In about a mile another trail intersection is met. The signed Upper Javalina continues off to the left, around and down a ridge. The Wild Mustang trail goes straight/right - take this route and continue higher up into the "highcountry" of mountains. This leg of the hike is relatively short, perhaps 0.7-0.8 of a mile. The last signed trail junction for this hike is the Cochie Spring trail, which breaks off on the left.

Take the Cochie Spring trail north as it continues to ramble across the hilltops, descending slightly through some magnificently huge saguaros. Soon the trail takes you by a drop-off where you can look northeast into the wide Cochie Canyon. Thereafter, the trail descends and west around a ridge(an old fence is encountered) before continuing back east and passing through a rickety old fence gate. You have now access to the southern wall of Cochie Canyon. You will mostly continue along the wall of the canyon, heading northeast for about 2.5 miles. There are some ups and downs along the way. The trail crosses over several drainages feeding down the canyon wall. There are big, long views into the canyon and up the canyon all the way. You can see some old, presumably abandoned buildings in the wide wash floor, along with some old dirt roads. This canyon has a long ranching history and there is still one active ranch in the canyon, the Carpenter Ranch. As such, you may well encounter some livestock along the trail. Ultimately the trail begins an earnest descent into the wash, where you will encounter the old Cochie Spring, with its requisite AERMOTOR CHICAGO windmill. From here, the trail continues on only a very short way over a ridge and back into the wash again.

The Cochie Spring Trail is about 3.25 miles in length and it takes a roughly 2.8-mile hike from the Wild Burro trailhead to access the Cochie Springs trail.

Check out the Official Route and 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.

2009-11-29 fricknaley
    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
    Paved - Car Okay

    To Wild Burro (Ritz) Trailhead
    From I-10 in north Tucson take Tangerine Road exit (#240) and head east. In about 5 miles the 1st stoplight you come to is Dove Mountain Blvd. Take left here and follow the road roughly 4 miles around the west end of the Tortolitas. Just past The Gallery is a small well-signed trailhead for Wild Burro Trail. This is on your right.

    From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 104 mi, 1 hour 37 mins
    From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 20.6 mi, 27 mins
    From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 248 mi, 3 hours 43 mins
    page created by fricknaley on Nov 29 2009 9:54 am
    90+° 8am - 6pm kills
    prehydrate & stay hydrated

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