Canada del Oro Trail #4, AZ | HikeArizona

Canada del Oro Trail #4, AZ

Guide 27 Triplogs Mine 0 0 Topics
4.2 of 5 
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Difficulty 4 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance One Way 7.15 miles
Trailhead Elevation 7,890 feet
Elevation Gain 3,186 feet
Accumulated Gain 3,283 feet
Avg Time One Way 4 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 18.09
 Backpack Possible & Connecting
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Photos Viewed All MineFollowing
15  2015-09-12
Mount Lemmon from Catalina State Park
15  2015-07-25
Red Ridge and Canada del Oro Loop
18  2015-07-25
Red Ridge and Canada del Oro Loop
31  2013-09-11
Red Ridge and Canada del Oro Loop
36  2013-07-27
Red Ridge and Canada del Oro Loop
17  2013-05-22
Oracle Ridge Canada Del Oro Mount Lemmon Loop
11  2012-10-29 nicolelee
22  2012-05-11
Meadow Trail #5A
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author avatar Guides 16,881
Routes 17,283
Photos 24
Trips 1 map ( 6 miles )
Age 26 Male Gender
Location HAZ, TrailDEX
Associated Areas
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Tucson Region
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred Jul, Jun, Aug, Sep → Early
Seasons   Spring to Summer
Sun  6:49am - 6:22pm
Official Route
8 Alternative
Historic Fire Perimetersacres
🔥 2020 Bighorn Fire119.5k
🔥 2003 Aspen Fire87.7 mi*
🔥 View (All) - over Official Route 🔥
*perimeter length in miles
Nearby Area Water
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Flora  Nearby
Named place  Nearby
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This old trail follows the drainage of the Canada del Oro, or Canyon of Gold, down the north slopes of Mt. Lemmon toward the town of Oracle. Besides being the site of a legendary lost gold mine, this canyon seems a bit lost itself. Down the slopes of Mt. Lemmon, it flows almost due north toward Oracle, but after Canada breaks out onto the broad flat valley at the mountain's base, it turns south and heads towards Tucson.
The usual way of accessing this trail is via a maintenance road along the underground powerline, which supplies electricity to the ski resort and observatory at the top of Mt. Lemmon. The trail leaves the powerline right-of-way in the vicinity of Shovel Spring and drops into the West Fork of the Canada del Oro. Once it reaches the broad canyon floor, the trail follows the gentle gradient of the streambed in the shade of the stately old sycamores and cottonwoods. Samaniego Ridge to the west and the Reef of Rocks to the east form the rims of the canyon and frame the view of the canyon's lower reaches and the Black Hills north of Oracle.

Where the east fork of the canyon joins the west, the Red Ridge Trail #2 branches off towards an old outpost named Catalina Camp. A similar group of mining digs and an old adobe outbuilding are located along the canyon floor at Coronado Camp. A common destination for travelers along this trail is the 4-wheel drive road (FR 736) which drops down into the canyon from Charoleau Gap. Some hikers continue all the way to the Burney Mines area.

Though there is ample evidence of human activity here, this area, in some ways, is more remote than the wilderness nearer to Tucson. Fewer trails lead into it, and fewer people visit it.

Attractions: Big canyon, sycamores, and cottonwoods, old mines and shacks, views to the north, and mountain to desert diversity.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

This is a moderately difficult hike.

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2008-02-25 HAZ_Hikebot
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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.

 Permit $$
Visit overview & permits.
2022 - FAQ
$8 per vehicle per day
$10 per vehicle per week
$40 per vehicle per year (valid for one year from date of purchase)

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.

2022 Catalina State Park
Per vehicle (1-4 Adults): $7.00
Individual/bicycle: $3.00

2022 Sabino Canyon Tram is $15 extra. [ website ]

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

Paved - Car Okay

To hike
Follow the Catalina Highway to the top. Just before the road comes to the Steward Observatory, it passes a parking lot on the left. Park here and continue down the Mt. Lemmon Trail #5 and the Sutherland Trail #6 to the Canada del Oro Trail junction. Access is also available via Charoleau Gap Road (4-wheel drive). Drive north from Tucson on AZ 89 (the Oracle Road) about 23 miles to Golder Ranch Road. (This intersection is marked by a traffic light). Turn east, travel about 1 mile, then turn north on Lago del Oro Road. Travel about 2 miles to a dirt road (FR 736) that turns east toward the riverbed. Follow this road left at a private property sign, through the river bed, and up and over Samaniego Ridge.

Notes: The Catalina Highway is paved and suitable for passenger cars but may be snow-covered in winter when chains or 4-wheel drive may be required.

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