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Bushmaster & Tower Peaks, AZ
mini location map2016-01-05
4 by photographer avatarThe_Dude
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Bushmaster & Tower Peaks, AZ 
Bushmaster & Tower Peaks, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 05 2016
Hiking4.03 Miles 1,666 AEG
Hiking4.03 Miles   2 Hrs   42 Mns   1.82 mph
1,666 ft AEG      29 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
Partners none no partners
Finally, first hike of the year! Thanks to AZhiker456 for posting the description on the Bushmaster loop, this got me thinking. Then I found a track combining this with Tower Peak, so count me in! I made my first trip down to Tucson of the year, and I had to deliver some plants out to the Arizona Sonoran Desert Museum (very cool place if you have never been), so that about sealed things up. I started hiking about 3:20 with overcast skies, but a hope for no rain for a little while...Parked at the Gates Pass scenic overlook and started picking my way around. There are some faint use trails, I ended up going off trail up to the Bushmaster ridge. Once up on the ridgeline there was once again a bit of a trail, path of least resistance of nothing else. Made it over to Bushmaster Peak for a brief stop, the wind was howling. I then retraced my steps back and on over to Tower peak. This one was short but sweet, I ended up taking a different path to the top that was a fun climb. Light was failing, so I tried to kick it in to gear as much as possible, but pretty hard to go to fast in this terrain. I took the use trail most of the way back to the parking area, but got off trail in the lower reaches and just bee-lined it to the van. I really like this hike, short but good effort nonetheless. Interesting views of the TMP and Saguaro park. I definitely paid the price of admission on this one, pain checklist for the day went like this: solid cholla bomb hit to my calf (that took a while to pry loose, still more removal once I got home), Ocotillo to the head for a nice bleeder, a few not-so-freindly Catclaw encounters, and one solid tumble on a scree slope. I will have to come back one of these days to do the Bushmaster loop, the eastern drop down looked pretty fun. Lots of big scat in some areas, there must be a mountain lion or two that live up around here.
Gray Fox
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