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Oracle Ridge Trail #1, AZ

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Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Tucson > Oracle
3.3 of 5 by 12
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Difficulty 3.5 of 5
Route Finding 3 of 5
Distance One Way 12.5 miles
Trailhead Elevation 4,720 feet
Elevation Gain 3,149 feet
Accumulated Gain 4,546 feet
Avg Time One Way 6-7 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 27.65
Backpack Possible & Connecting
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Collective Slideshow
Inaugural Calculation next Tap
25  2018-07-05
Apache Peak Abort
22  2018-06-09
Oracle Ridge to Catalina Camp
21  2018-02-18 DarthStiller
33  2016-10-01
Apache Peak & Oracle Hills x2
19  2016-03-24
AZT: Vail to Oracle
5  2016-03-19
Oracle Ridge - AZT #12
4  2016-03-10 rvcarter
10  2015-08-04
Oracle Ridge - AZT #12
Page 1,  2,  3
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   May, Oct, Sep, Aug → Early
Seasons   Spring to Summer
Sun  6:55am - 5:21pm
Route Scout App
Official Route
9 Linked
Nearby Area Water
Oracle State Park
Oracle State Park
0.8 mi away
Cody Trail #9
Cody Trail #9
2.5 mi away
3.7 mi
Oracle - AZT #13
2.5 mi away
8.6 mi
759 ft
Black Hills - AZT #14
Black Hills - AZT #14
3.9 mi away
27.6 mi
4,702 ft
Peppersauce Campground
4.8 mi away
Charouleau Gap
Charouleau Gap
5.3 mi away
18.5 mi
3,210 ft
Biosphere 2
5.5 mi away
0.5 mi
159 ft
Rice Peak
5.9 mi away
8.8 mi
3,951 ft
Pinal County Highpoint
5.9 mi away
Peppersauce Cave
Peppersauce Cave
5.9 mi away
1.0 mi
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Fauna Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
AZT leaves the show!
by HAZ_Hikebot

This trail follows one of the earliest known routes to the top of Mt. Lemmon, believed to be the trail that John and Sara Lemmon followed in the early 1880's on their trip to the summit of the mountain which was later named in Sara's honor. This trail is reportedly where biologist Lemmon saw his first Arizona pine. Actually a subspecies or variety of ponderosa pine, this was the first of roughly 100 plant species and subspecies Lemmon cataloged in the state's southern mountains.

In spite of the fact that the Oracle Ridge Trail has been traveled for so long a time, it is quite hard to follow in a number of places, perhaps because it passes through a center of mining and prospecting activity. As a result, old mining roads and bulldozer paths have obscured the trail in several places. If you are a history buff, you'll appreciate the old and not-so-old mines you encounter along this route. If your interests tend toward more natural sights, you'll probably spend more time taking in the views which stretch to the north, east and west. The Oracle Ridge Trail passes very near the summit of Rice Peak and relatively near the summit of Apache Peak. These two peaks offer good views of Mt. Lemmon and the Santa Catalinas, as well as of the historic mining district around the town of Oracle and the basin and range landscape beyond.

Attractions: Ridge top panoramas, North, east, and west views, Pine forest to desert diversity, Historic mining area & Arizona Trail segment.

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  • 100 Classic Hikes - 2007
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    100 Classic Hikes - 2007

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.

Permit $$
no fees or permits reported

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

Map Drive

To hike
From Tucson: Take the Catalina Highway off Tanque Verde Road. Drive 4.2 miles to the Forest boundary and continue 25 miles to a point past the Loma Linda Picnic Area where the Control Road (FR 38) turns right and passes the Mt. Lemmon Fire Station. Follow this road straight, past the fire station and down the ridge. Just beyond the first cattle guard, the trail leaves from a parking area on the left side of the road and cuts through a notch in the ridge.

From Oracle: Follow the Oracle Highway through the town of Oracle to the Old Mt. Lemmon Road (also called the Control Road and FR 38). Follow this route south at a fork where signs point the way to the YMCA Camp and Boys Camp. It's about 1 mile on this all-weather dirt road to the trailhead marked Arizona Trail near a corral on the right side of the road. Use the Cody Trail #9 (part of the Arizona Trail) to gain access to the Oracle Ridge Trail.
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