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mini location map2017-10-13
32 by photographer avatarSkyIslander18
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Heliograph Peak LoopTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 13 2017
SkyIslander18
Hiking9.40 Miles 1,650 AEG
Hiking9.40 Miles
1,650 ft AEG
 no routes
Partners none no partners
Bad start to the morning when at Ladybug Saddle on the drive up I stopped to read the info signs. Attempted to hop up a 2 foot rock wall and caught my toe. Crashed down hard on the wall bracing the impact with my elbow and forearm, it shot up my arm and I was 100% certain I had broke my arm. Jumped up to see my shoulder forward in an unnatural way, pushed in and lifted my arm to hear a pop and my shoulder was straight again. Damn it, I popped a vicodin and waited for it to kick in while contemplating ER or hiking. Vicodin kicked in and I chose hiking.

First up was High Peak Rd. My last visit I saw that my favorite aspen meadow had made it through the Frye Fire and I wanted to see it again. I arrived at the meadow to see it mostly autumn gold. I made a hammock camp and spent a few hours there ..... I could have stayed all day there, but Heliograph Peak was the goal of the day.

Next up Heliograph. Of all the trails that looked on heat & progression maps to have the least fire impact, I though this one may have fared well. I was dead wrong ..... except for the very top (peak) and a decent portion of the back trail, this loop IMO is destroyed. The peak was nice, but showed from 10,000 feet up the majority of the mountain top and I am now certain that except for the campgrounds ..... you will be hard pressed to find 1 acre of forest from Heliograph Peak to Riggs Lake that has not been impacted from the fire. I popped a second pain killer and completed the loop back down to Shannon CG, this campground looked good!

There was good - I saw an unbelievable amount of deer (maybe 20-25), a dozen Abert's & many big birds above.
Lots of contractors driving up & down the Swift Trail continuing repairs on the mountain.
Heliograph Peak & High Peak meadow were wonderful!

On the drive back down I was 50/50 on an ER visit before going home. I chose home, we'll see what tomorrow brings.
:zzz:
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Moderate

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Heliograph Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
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