Any recent water sightings in Sabino Basin (AZT passage 11)?

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andrewp
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Any recent water sightings in Sabino Basin (AZT passage 11)?

Post by andrewp »

Planning a 1 or 2 night trip in the lower Catalinas with part of it in Sabino Basin. I'm having trouble finding enough recent water reports to feel confident doing this trip without extra water carry.

Has anyone recently seen any water in the east or west fork of Sabino Cayon or near Sycamore reservoir?

The last water report from Hutch's Pool suggests that it is in the process of drying up and the little data posted to aztwaterreports / guthook isn't promising. I was at Sycamore reservoir in early November and although the area behind the dam was bone dry there was a strong seep out of the dam face and cliff side into the basin below which then flowed underground and out through the series of pools below the dam. As that was 2 months ago and precipitation has been nil I'm concerned that source has dried up as well.

Anyone been to Hutch's pool in the last couple of weeks and seen actual water?
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SpiderLegs
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Re: Any recent water sightings in Sabino Basin (AZT passage 11)?

Post by SpiderLegs »

@andrewp - I'm almost positive that I saw a pic that showed Hutch's pool and some of the other pools on the front range full of black sludge-like water if they have any water at all.
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azbackpackr
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Re: Any recent water sightings in Sabino Basin (AZT passage 11)?

Post by azbackpackr »

@andrewp
A friend went on the ATA survey hike to document trail damage, a couple weeks ago, and said there is sludgy water in Hutch's. They walked the closed areas from Marshall Gulch to Romero Pass to Hutch's, and then out via Sycamore. I can ask her where else they found water. It may take a day to get hold of her. [Edit: got hold of her. She said no water between Hutch's pool and Sycamore. No water at Sycamore. No water at the Junctions of the creeks. She did filter water at Hutch's pool and it was okay. This was in mid December, and it has snowed since then but not enough to matter very much.]
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andrewp
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Re: Any recent water sightings in Sabino Basin (AZT passage 11)?

Post by andrewp »

@azbackpackr

Thanks for this info! Your response came in after I left for my trip, but I do really appreciate you taking the time.

I ended up modifying my route slightly so that I could check out Sycamore Reservoir on the outbound which would allow me to plan the rest of the trip. Carried water for two full days from the start which was fun...

Hutch's pool was exactly as described. The main pool is black sludge with a pool slightly downstream that was swampy. Really sad to see it that way. I didn't bother filtering any of it as I had carried extra for the evening and following day.

Sycamore reservoir was similar to what I observed in early November. There no water in the reservoir or streambed but there IS water seeping through the dam and the adjacent canyon wall. This is dropping into a pool at the base of the dam and then the water flows mostly underground to a set of pools about 50yds downstream. At the base of the dam the water is nasty and has an oily film. It also almost smells like burnt motor oil. The water in the pools is clear and has no odor aside from a hint of bio-funk which is likely from whatever is growing in the pools. My filter turned that into perfectly tasty water which hasn't killed me yet although it's only been 24 hours. :)

It's so sad to see the East & West fork of Sabino so dry and based on the weather reports it's not looking promising for meaningful rain anytime soon.
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azbackpackr
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Re: Any recent water sightings in Sabino Basin (AZT passage 11)?

Post by azbackpackr »

@andrewp
In the past Hutch's pool has filled up with black sludge and silt after a big fire, but it all washed away and the pool was nice again a couple years later. I haven't been up there for a few years myself.
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
A clean house is a sign of a misspent life.
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