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Bog - Kent Springs Loop
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mini location map2012-04-28
48 by photographer avatartibber
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Bog - Kent Springs LoopTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 28 2012
Hiking6.10 Miles 1,899 AEG
Hiking6.10 Miles   3 Hrs   51 Mns   2.25 mph
1,899 ft AEG   1 Hour   8 Mns Break
1st trip
I was lucky enough to get an invite to take up floor space at Santa Rita Lodge while Ambika was on her photo workshop. This sounded like an opportunity I shouldn't pass up and in light of my injury from the weekend before, I thot hanging out here would be the perfect cure. I had planned to meet up with Randy, he would camp, and we would hike but circumstances changed :( so I was on my own with the hiking (hopefully next time Randy). I hadn't done any Rx. In the future, I will do some Rx in case this type of thing happens again. Ambika recommended this loop so that's what I settled on.

I walked down to the TH and started hiking around 7AM. Fortunately there was a trail map at the sign/self pay area for Madera Canyon Picnic area. And so off I went. Soon I realized this trail was going to be UP. I mean obviously it was going to be UP but little did I know. I did end up having to put my shirt on over my tee though as the temp and slight breeze put a chill in the air.

My first stop was to photograph a couple little cascades into a pool of water that had a pretty nice reflection. And then it was onward and upward on some sort of old road. There were a couple intersections along the way and I felt certain I was following the trail I wanted to be on for Bog Springs. I came upon a sign that said Bog Spring 1.7 miles so I continued on the way I thot the arrows were pointing.

At one point I could hear a bit of a waterfall but I couldn't see it so I recorded the roaring sound (it's in the movie). About an hour into the hike I see this HUGE bird land on a branch of a tall tree. It is a brilliant red-chested bird surrounded in black feathers. And the sound, wow, what a sound; so unusual. I was able to get a few photos and I did a movie to record the sound. I would later be at the bird watching area at the Lodge and found out I had captured the ellusive Elegant Trogon. Oh the birders were jealous. When I explained and pointed to where I had seen the bird, they realized it was not the hike for them.

I finally come to a spring but it's not Bog :o , it's Sylvester. WHAT! Oh well, I'll worry about my direction after I check out this pretty cool box as it has a nice reflection in the water framed by the outline of the box. When I pull out my map I discover I must have somehow veered right instead of left :doh: . Oh well, gotta keep going at this point as I've already come up all this elevation. So off I go in pursuit of Kent Spring.

1/2 hour later I reach Kent Spring and am rather grateful as I've spent most of the hike so far climbing and climbing and climbing :sweat: . I'm so glad that I encountered water along the way to break up the trip and that the temp was near perfect.

At the Spring I encountered the 3 hikers I had seen at the parking lot and asked if I was indeed heading for Bog Spring. They said yes and did mention I needed to watch the trail at the bottom or I would end up at the Bog Spring Campground rather than the parking lot.... famous last words. They also felt the trail wasn't well marked.

Now I go from the wide road to a very narrow trail running alongside the mountain. You walk in a level (though the trail is slanted left) direction for quite some time. Eventually you start switchbacking your way down. I do think this would be the easier way up. I soon found myself back in the canyon where the birds were talking up a storm. Once again I would have to stop and film so that I could share the racket with you. I also heard hikers (it was amazing how loud they were) from way above and encountered them just after this area (no, I did not record them :lol: ).

I would get to the Bog Springs junction and head over to the Box. You could really call this the "Three Springs Tour". I saw some birders off in the distance. I went back to the junction and continued on down the trail. When I got to the old jeep road, I consulted Scout (GPS) to see if I was on the right trail. It appeared I was but soon I would find myself at, yep, you guessed it, the Bog Spring Campground. SHOOT! ](*,) !!!

So now I could go back and figure out where the trail went but I thot, "What the heck, let's see where the road ends up." I also thot, "It's not a bad thing for me to hike on a road considering I did an eye/forehead plant last week." I like to joke that when Kelly and John said, "Let's hit the trail" I took them literally :sl: . I had to try and remember to put on my sunglasses when I encountered folks so they wouldn't get that "OMG, what the pumpkin happened to her face?!". The road went along a little further than I anticipated but I finally got back to the Madera Picnic area where the TH starts. I saw the other 3 folks I had seen at the beginning and at Kent Spring.

I decided to walk across the road and take the Nature Trail back up to the Lodge. I actually ended up walking past the Lodge before I found a trail that heads back up to the road and down to the Lodge. I then hear a couple turkeys gobbling so I go back across the road and up the hill to where I can see the turkey. I took a couple pics and a movie before heading back to the Lodge.

I planted myself on one of the bird watching benches for a little while. I was telling the folks sitting next to me about my bird encounter. They said I had probably seen a Trogon. I played the sound and they said, "yep, that's it". They were thrilled as they told me birders find a trogon sighting a big "get" : app : . I spent a lot of time with birders this weekend and I have to tell you, they are the nicest bunch and are so willing to share information. I particularly like the story of the "cow birds".

After lunch, I went back out to take photos of all the birds. I talked again with many of the birders as I enjoyed watching the hummers, the Jays, the acorn Woodpeckers, the orioles, the sparrows and many others. My camera finger got a good workout. My last great catch of the day was a flame Tanager.

Video of hike:

PS. If anyone would be interested, I'll have birding video including the crazy turkeys at the end of my Madera Canyon Nature Trail Trip Report.
Feather Dalea
For me, sometimes it's just as much about the journey as the destination.
Oh, and once in awhile, don't forget to look back at the trail you've traveled.
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