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Jammed Log Waterpark and Rainbow Falls, AZ
mini location map2010-08-05
20 by photographer avatarsirena
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Jammed Log Waterpark and Rainbow Falls, AZ 
Jammed Log Waterpark and Rainbow Falls, AZ
Hiking10.00 Miles 1,000 AEG
Hiking10.00 Miles   5 Hrs      2.00 mph
1,000 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked   none no linked trail guides
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In the beginning of July, I hiked with my friends Bill and Mitch to check out Jammed Log Pool in Sabino Canyon. We were a little disappointed when we arrived to see the pools were very low, mucky, and algae-filled. We found a lower pool that wasn't too bad, had a swim, and vowed to return after the monsoons had revitalized the place. On August 5th, Bill, Mitch, and I returned to Sabino Canyon to log some quality swimming time after the recent monsoon rains had recharged the creeks. I invited Wendy to join us- I knew she would appreciate a good swim in a beautiful place.

We started at 5:30 am, but were rewarded by shade and cool conditions all the way up to the pools. After escaping the drudgery of walking up the paved Sabino Canyon Road, the rockhopping got interesting as we searched for water crossings to move up the creekbed. A month ago, it had been drier and much easier to walk upstream. We saw the most incredible thing- a small fawn crouched in the water underneath a bush. It lay motionless, not reacting to four people staring right at it 10 feet away. I got concerned, and thought that it might be injured, so I made my way toward it to check it out. I was hoping that I wasn't going to have to abort my hike and carry a sick fawn back to the Miller's Wildlife Rehab, where I am a volunteer. Thankfully, the fawn jumped up and ran past the rest of my group as it sensed me getting nearby. There was a bit more rockhopping and we turned the corner to see that the Jammed Log Waterpark was open for business!!

Rushing waterfalls, a long, beautiful pool below- it was time for me to inflate my $2 bright green innertube (aka "the floatie") and get into the water! Mitch and Bill jumped right in.
After I got my floatie inflated, it was time for the natural Lazy River down the creek. We all remarked how you couldn't design a better lazy river in any waterpark in the world! Of course, I had to offer the floatie to my hiking companions, and they took turns floating near the waterfalls and down the creek. There was a great little waterfall that you could stand underneath and look through the falls. The log that gives the pool its name was wedged between two boulders high above the creek years ago. It is incredible to think of the power of that flood! Bill tried to shake it, but that log isn't going anywhere...well until the next giant flood, at least. Unfortunately, we eventually had to leave, because some of our group had places to be later in the morning. Before we did, we threw a Wendy.

We resumed our rockhopping down the creek back the way we came, but made a small detour to check out an ephemeral waterfall. We bushwhacked to the base to find there was a clear way to scramble up to the higher pools. We counted at least four tiers in the waterfall. When we all reached the top of the second tier, we found a beautiful shower with a rainbow in it that dropped into a pool. Wendy, Mitch and I all got under the spray to wet ourselves down for the hike out. We all decided it should be called Rainbow Falls.

A worthwhile detour, indeed! We got lucky with some intermittent clouds and a good breeze on the hike out on Sabino Canyon Road. Everything along the road was so green and we could hear the rushing of Sabino Creek below. 10:30 am and I've already hiked 10 miles, gone swimming, and seen a rainbow- what a great way to spend the morning!
 Flora [ checklist ]
[ checklist ]  Tree Tobacco
 Culture [ checklist ]
[ checklist ]  Throwing a Wendy
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