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Samaniego Peak
12 Photosets

2017-10-20  
2017-10-05  
2014-05-28  
2012-10-13  
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2012-08-11  
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mini location map2017-10-05
13 by photographer avatarrvcarter
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Samaniego PeakTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 05 2017
rvcarter
Hiking12.74 Miles 3,337 AEG
Hiking12.74 Miles   8 Hrs   21 Mns   1.60 mph
3,337 ft AEG      22 Mns Break
 
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Mountain_Rat
NIEL CHRISTENSEN
This is my second try at this. I had a triplog ready to go and clicked on "add pooch advice" (don't take one), and lost what I had written by not backing out properly. Grrrrrrrrrr.

After reading the recent triplogs of a couple of Tucsonans who did this hike, Matt and I decided to give it a try, and dragged Niel into it. We actually didn't tell Niel where we were going til halfway up Mt. Lemmon. This is a deceptively difficult hike to a wonderful destination. The peak affords spectacular views of Reef of Rocks and the west side of Mt. Lemmon across the CDO. An added feature for the next few weeks is the considerable leaf color, but hurry, the aspen are already starting to shed their leaves.

I've hiked to Samaniego Peak 4 times, once from the west (trail is now gone), and 3 times from Radio Ridge. As usual, 3 years dulls the memory. When I last did this, the trail was clean and free of overlapping vegetation, thanks to maintenance by the Forest Service. The trail is now quite overgrown, especially past the junction with the CDO trail, with lots of thorny bushes, locust bushes, you name it. I can't emphasize this enough: WEAR LONG PANTS!. If you don't, expect your legs look and feel like you've been through a sandstorm/meat grinder. The bushes just wear the skin off your legs from the thighs down.

The vegetation growth and downed trees mean you'll occasionly need to stop and relocate the trail. I wouldn't say a gps loaded with my track is critical, but it would be greatly helpful. As a minimum, take a good topo map, even though it is not likely you will get very far off the ridge, and there are good metal signs at all the main intersections. The first time we did this hike from the top, the bushwhack to the ridge from just above Walnut Spring was a fight through manzanita and thorn bushes over some considerable boulders. Now, with the well-cairned and trimmed path, it's much easier, but still not a walk in the park. Beware that the cairns are not frequent on the lower part. On the upper part, you can pretty much see from one cairn to the next pretty easily. Just take your time and pick the path of least resistence. Once you reach the ridge, you still have some heavy class 3 boulder scrambling to reach the high point. There is a sign-in tube.

All in all, this is a great hike, but be aware that the climb out is considerable and takes place when you are most tired. The distance and ascent numbers don't provide a complete picture of difficulty. Take plenty of liquids and energy snacks. The hike is best suited for experienced, fit hikers. It is all to easy to get down to the Walnut Spring area, but the climb out can takes its toll, especially in warm weather. We were three tired puppies when we reached the car.
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Check out my Instagram posts at "cartershift", and my Youtubes at my channel "roy v carter".
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rvcarter's
191 Photosets

  2018-09-02
  2018-04-13
  2018-04-05
  2018-03-30
  2018-03-09
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  2018-01-26
  2018-01-19
  2018-01-05
  2017-12-29
  2017-12-01
  2017-11-25
  2017-10-26
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  2017-10-05
  2017-09-03
  2017-09-03
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