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Mount Lemmon from Catalina State Park
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mini location map2012-10-12
10 by photographer avatarPatrickL
photographer avatar
 
Mount Lemmon from Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 12 2012
PatrickL
Hiking26.20 Miles 7,880 AEG
Hiking26.20 Miles   13 Hrs      2.43 mph
7,880 ft AEG   2 Hrs   12 Mns Break20 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
San Gorgonio had snow in the forecast, and the lodge on the North Rim sold out by the time I could figure out the details, so it was onto plan C.

I hit the trail about 10 minutes before sunrise and reached Romero Pass in 3h 15m, if I remember correctly, losing my sunglasses somewhere in the process. There are a few tree hurdles just below the pass. My pace slowed further up, and for the first time in a long time I had to sit down and take a couple brief breaks. A sign where Sutherland and Mt. Lemmon meet said the peak was another 1.5 miles away, on top of the 11.something I had already gone. A couple pumpkins were dropped and I continued on, even though I had already gone through 100oz of my water.

Finding the spur trail for the highpoint took a minute, and staying on it took some paying attention, though you could probably just follow the fence of the observatory. At the top, I had some much needed food and accessed my remaining water. I drank most of my 16oz bottle and emptied the rest into my reservoir, along with another liter. The other liter was left in its bottle where I could visibly keep track of it. As it turns out, I ended up drinking less than a liter on the way down.

I finally started to feel sore on the descent. Before hitting Romero Pass again, I passed two people who were on their way up. I asked them if they had seen any sunglasses and they said yes, and told me about where they were at. That was kind of useless to me, but at least there was hope. Back in Romero Canyon, my legs were crying! I kept telling them the car was right around the corner, but they knew I was full of it. And just when I didn't think I'd ever see my sunglasses again, I found them lying right next to the trail. :D

I really wanted the last few miles to be over. I sat down a couple times to ease the pain in my legs but it was no use. I pressed on, spotting a deer in the process. The last two miles were mostly in the dark. All's well that ends well, and despite feeling sore, I'm happy to have bagged Lemmon this way. This goes down as the biggest hike I've ever done, in every sense.

Miscellaneous notes:
Shin daggers are a pain in the ass, or leg. Yeah, mostly leg.
I need a trowel.
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Isolated
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