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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.

Adams Flat, AZ

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Guide 36 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Tucson > Safford
3.5 of 5 by 4
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Difficulty 1 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance Round Trip 1.2 miles
Trailhead Elevation 5,178 feet
Elevation Gain 240 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 1.25 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 2.4
Backpack Yes
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
16  2017-11-19
Jacobson Canyon
5  2016-08-10 cactuscat
15  2016-04-25 SkyIslander18
10  2014-01-19 SkyIslander18
15  2013-05-29 SkyIslander18
13  2012-09-12
Jacobson Canyon
45  2012-05-01 outdoor_lover
8  2012-01-24 SkyIslander18
Page 1,  2
Author PrestonSands
author avatar Guides 168
Routes 149
Photos 5,534
Trips 1,317 map ( 6,690 miles )
Age 42 Male Gender
Location Oro Valley, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Apr, May, Sep, Oct → Any
Seasons   ALL
Sun  6:04am - 6:23pm
Official Route
0 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
Transition zone water park
by PrestonSands

Likely In-Season!
This is a short and easy off-trail hike that you can do if the upper Pinaleno Mountains are snowed in. There is a lot of history in this pretty riparian area.

From the Ladybug Trailhead, begin following the Ladybug Trail #329 up the brushy ridge away from the parking area. This is believed to be the route of the old Jacobson Sawmill road, built in 1894 to access the sawmill that was located higher up in the canyon near the Turkey Flat cabins. The trail soon turns left, leaving the old wagon road. The Ladybug Trail begins heading downhill towards the creek, and soon crosses an irrigation ditch on the side of the hill. This ditch provides Angle Orchard (near the Ladybug Trailhead) with water. Turn right, and begin following the little irrigation ditch upstream. Be careful not to damage the ditch when hiking beside it.

Follow the route of the ditch along the hillside, as it makes a pleasant stroll through the alligator junipers and oak trees. The footing on this route can be a bit tricky, as there are two small plastic and iron pipes that snake along the ditch among the grasses. The ditch has its own man made riparian area, complete with a small raspberry patch. Soon perennial flowing Jacobson Creek rises up to your left to meet the ditch, in an area of alder trees and sycamores. There is a short waterfall just upstream of where the ditch meets the creek, and a worn trail heads up the bank to the right of it. At the top of this bank is the area shown on the topo map as Adams Flat, which is covered in a pure stand of white oak trees. The old Jacobson Sawmill wagon road rejoins us here, although its route has long since succumbed to the vegetation. There are a few ponderosa pines and young white firs scattered around here.

Heading back to Jacobson Creek, a short walk down the creek bed will take you to a couple waterfalls where the creek passes through a deep crack in the earth, and drops about 50 feet in a short distance. The short, cascading waterfalls slide over the polished, gray granite bedrock here, next to a flat sitting rock. There is a hot tub sized pool at the base of the upper falls. The rock around it is slick, so be careful if you choose to get in. One can enjoy looking down the perfectly straight cleft in the bedrock here, to the desert in the distance.

When you are done, head back down canyon, following the flume. If Angle Orchard (which has been operating since 1922) is open, and there is fruit to be had, get some. Probably the best tasting apples I've ever had!

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

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2007-01-14 PrestonSands
    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 of 31 deeper Triplog Reviews
    Adams Flat
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    Sunrise start.
    Up the ditch-line to Adams :next: Up Jacobson Creek to where it meets Twilight Creek :next: back down and a short trip to lower Jacobson Creek before returning to Angle Orchard.
    Lots of green, some flowers along the water and the berry patches are gettin' ... they gave me scratchy legs.
    Lots of coati, deer and bear sign, but no sightings this morning.
    Falls get a 4/10 rating which is better than the 2/10 I expected.
    Adams needs rain, but doesn't all of AZ!
    Good trip

    Just along the water (Yellow Monkeyflower)
    Adams Flat
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    From Angle Orchard :next: up the ditch to Adams Flat (ditch not flowing) :next: up Jacobson creek to Twilight creek :next: back down and a quick visit to lower Jacobson creek :next: back up to Angle Orchard.
    Spent 3 hours at the flat doing my day camp thing.
    Both creeks were flowing light, a little surprising with all the snow melt going on.
    Adams Falls looked good despite the light flow.
    Adams Flat looked great, still damp from the rains.
    No coatis today, in fact ... no wildlife at all.
    Temps were perfect and I enjoyed my stay!

    Adams Flat
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    Day camp trip up to Adams Flat and beyond.
    Ditch was running with water, took it up to Adams then about half a mile up Jacobson.
    Found a great spot for a day camp, set up and spent 4 hours along the creek.
    R&R, cooked lunch, practiced outdoor skills & a little exploring around.
    Word of the day was Coati!
    Holy Mundi they were everywhere today.
    Had 8-10 walk into my camp from down stream, 2 got within 10 yards before I blew it and the alarm was sounded.
    Hiked back down through the Flat and encountered about 12-15 more that were immediately on to my presence, they scattered in all directions across the flat and up & down the trees.
    3 more along the ditch on the way back down.
    This may have been the most coatis I've ever seen in one day.
    Made it back to Angle Orchard and drove home happy with my choice for the day!

    Adams Flat
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    I knew Jacobson Creek would be flowing light so I thought it would be a good time to hike up to the base of Adams Falls. I entered the canyon at Angle Orchard and got up to within 100 yards of the falls, to reach the base I would have had to get waist deep wet ..... not in November. On the way back out I saw that the orchard had half the creek diverted down their ditch-line, did not plan on an Adams Flat hike, but when they have the water flowing down ..... it's mandatory! I'm glad I went up, it was colorful and a lot of fun hiking up the canyon beyond the flat!
    The lower colors are getting good, especially the sycamores.
    Wildlife sightings were :o I came upon a dead coati floating in the lower canyon (within 24hrs), another dead coati in the upper canyon (2-3 days) & a third dead coati down to skeleton right next to the second. ?????
    Except for all the dead coatis, it was a good time up and down Jacobson.
    :D :( :-k
    Adams Flat
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    After Goat Canyon and John's Dam with Chad, I drove up the Swift Trail to Round the Mountain, and gave the road block there the stink eye and a bit of grumbling. I need my mixed conifer fix! But it was not to be today...

    Chad had mentioned post fire changes at Adams Flat and Jacobson Creek, and, not having been there in quite a while, I chose to venture up there. The flume trail to Adams was getting overgrown in spots, but the big changes were along Jacobson Creek. A conveyor belt of boulders from the Wet Canyon flood had mowed down all the trees and debris in the creek bed, and generally opened up the once choked canyon. Saw a baby Arizona Black Rattlesnake among the rocks and walked across a giant fallen tree that had formed a natural bridge high above the creek. I walked through the Blair-Witchy trees at Adams Flat, and then made my way down to the waterfalls and Adams' box canyon. Chocolate mud water roared down the series of falls, which I got to see in their entirety from a ledge for the first time. Even found an old, rusty can of "Lucky Lager" beer from 1952 among the rocks. I headed back to my rental car afterward, and visited Angle Orchard for the first time in years, exchanging the $10 in my wallet for some obscenely delicious peaches.

    Next up was a walk on the Swift Trail. I followed it for a bit before making my way off trail into the bushes above Noon Creek. Followed the trail uphill for a bit, and then took the lower spur to Noon Creek itself, where I enjoyed a nice soak in refreshingly chilly, cascading water. I started making my way through the canyon, bypassing beautiful slick rock pools and small waterfalls along the way. This was the highlight of my random hike route, and one that I'd like to check out again. Eventually I had to cross the canyon and bushwhack through a locust thicket to climb back up to the Swift Trail and my car, wrapping up my hike at sunset.

    I finished off my Safford day trip with dinner at Casa Manana for a tasty burro combo, and then reluctantly made a moonlight drive back to Tucson. It was a totally random and largely unplanned day, typical for me, but great fun as usual.
    Adams Flat
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    Angle Orchard :next: Adams Flat :next: Jacobson Creek up to Wet Canyon Y :next: Back down to Lower Jacobson Creek :next: Angle Orchard.
    Ditch trail up to Adams not flowing, very flora thick going up.
    Adams Falls was flowing above average.
    Had lunch in the flat with 3 deer.
    Hike up to Wet Canyon Y was spectacular! (more later)
    Lower Jacobson also spectacular! (more later)
    Then a hike around and through Angle Orchard, purchased apples & peaches upon leaving.

    Extra Credit/Bonus Hike - Preston informed me that he was in a rental and heading East. We met up at the end of the Swift Trail straight-away where we together hiked down to John's Dam and out along the flume to Goat Tank and back. I then gave him a peach and we parted ways with him going up the mountain for some hikes and myself driving down to Roper Lake to distribute apples & peaches to friends.

    The more later - I finally found some good in the Frye Fire of 2017! Major flooding (as predicted) has occurred from the monsoon rains down many of the mountain canyons with Wet Canyon being hit the worst. 366 at Wet Canyon has been closed until the passing of the summer rains because of the destruction it keeps bringing. I did not think the "bad" flooding made it down lower to the canyons I hiked today, but it did and has been just as destructive. Although it has forever changed the look of these canyons/creek beds with massive bolder and silt deposits, it has also cleaned up in a violent way most of the debris that made hiking up the creek bed/canyon possible. I had no problem (and a lot of fun) getting up the creek beds for the first time ever ..... and I found this new rebirth good!

    Was a very enlightening day, the power of flooding has my respect and awe. Good new things to come on future trips and I now believe I am finally coming to terms with and moving on from the effects of what the Frye Fire did to our Sky Island (the eastern side up) ..... there may still be major rants when I (we) can see the top and beyond next Arpil 15th ..... 8-[
    Adams Flat
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    Early morning trip up to Adams Flat and beyond.
    Angle Orchard is now flooding their fruit fields so the ditch-line (trail) was running with lots of water.
    Hiked up to where Twilight, Jacobson & Wet creeks meet ..... beautiful lush area!
    2 separate lone coati encounters were had on the way up.
    Then back down to the flat where I made a small bush camp for a couple hours of R&R.
    Side trip down Ladybug trail to Jacobson creek before heading up & out.
    Then an hour spent before heading home at Noon Creek to check the water flow.
    Adams Flat
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    Just wanted a day on the mountain to relax and practice some outdoor skills.
    Adams Flat was the choice and a good one!
    The ditch trail up was not flowing, but man was the creek below including the big falls.
    Perhaps the best flow I have ever seen ..... the falls were Awesome!
    My next 4 hours were spent up in the flat under the light rain that fell half of the trip.
    I spent my time first constructing a poncho shelter camp, then a fire for a hot meal & drink before settling in for some R&R just above the creek and it's roar of water below.
    After my fill I packed up camp, hiked up creek a bit, down to the top of the big falls, down to lower Jacobson creek & back up to my truck at Angle Orchard.
    Enjoyed this day so much with what I saw ..... I just might have to go right back up the next :D
    Adams Flat
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    Main reason for today's trip up the mountain was to get some apples from Angle Orchard.
    Had the car today, so I parked along the Swift Trail and walked the orchard's dirt road down.
    At the orchard I talked with the folks, got my bucket & spent the next hour walking and picking apples.
    The Adams Flat trail lies just above the orchard, so after my purchase I hid the bag of apples and hit the flume trail up to the big waterfall overlook. The double falls were flowing very good today and IMO these are the second best falls to see on the mountain (when flowing this good) with the best being Ash Creek falls.
    Came back down, grabbed my bag full of 4 different types of apples & walked the road back up to the car.
    I'll be living off of apples for the next few days!
    Adams Flat
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    Very enjoyable morning hike with Addie up to Adams Flat!
    Heavy flow down the orchard ditch line all the way up.
    The upper falls were not flowing well, so we spent more time up at the flat and along the upper creek.
    Lots of thick raspberry patches now along the way pinstriping my legs red.
    Quick stop on the hike out down at Lower Jacobson Creek for some project gathering.
    On the drive back down, we stopped at the Coronado pulloff for another short hike around the Swift Trail bend.

    Permit $$

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

    Map Drive
    FR / Dirt Road / Gravel - Car Okay

    To hike
    From US highway 191, follow highway 366 approximately 7.5 miles to Angle Orchard/Ladybug Trailhead road (forest road 4515). Follow forest service (dirt) road 4515 about 0.5 miles to the Ladybug Trail sign.
    3 pack - loud whistle
    go prepared
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