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Canelo Hills West - AZT #3
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mini location map2018-04-29
13 by photographer avatartibber
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Canelo Hills West - AZT #3Tucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 29 2018
tibber
Hiking6.53 Miles 665 AEG
Hiking6.53 Miles   2 Hrs   58 Mns   2.43 mph
665 ft AEG      17 Mns Break
 
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After an eventful night in the tent for me with having to blow up my air pad four times, we had decided the previous nite to get on the trail by 6:30AM so that we could have a late breakfast in Patagonia... well actually pie and ice cream. We started hiking at 6:40AM. There's not much opportunity to warm up your legs as you have to tackle two hills, one a bit bigger than the other. But at least it was cooler to start so we made pretty good time. You have some nice views as you contour around some of the hills and go up a little and down a little. The first mile and 1/2 seemed to take longer than normal but it really wasn't.

On this section of the single trail it did have some steep sections as far as terrain into drainages and some of the switchbacks were a bit steep as well. In fact, Shawn stopped at one to show us that everything that could be wrong with a particular switchback construction was evidenced here. We crossed over a couple really red rock areas. In the distance you could see Red Mountain too. As we neared the saddle we encountered a waterless hiker out for a stroll which is about a mile from the trailhead; the only person we would see on this 14 mile trek before the paved Harshaw Road.

We rested at the saddle for a moment as I needed to adjust my pack. My pack rode well yesterday but I was struggling a bit today which I don't understand. From there it was down and down and down to the valley below. It was warming up again so I was glad we got started early. Some pretty area through here with the mesquite trees scattered about. We finally hit the Road and went over to check out the TH sign. It's quite nice but seems an odd place to put it rather than at the end/beginning of the single track. But maybe being in this big lot more people might see it and learn about the Arizona Trail.

And now for the 3 1/2 mile or so pavement walk. I knew it was going to be long and it was. Fortunately it's easy walking and you can walk and gawk. It was interesting on the south side of the road that they had actually built up concrete to stop the water from slamming into the road when the Harshaw Creek is flowing good. And of course there's the tip toe across the cattle guards which is never any fun. We stopped and visited the Longhorns that were for sale.

And alas, Tonto Jr was in sight. Now for that pie and ice cream, at least for three of us. So onto the Gathering Grounds where Shawn had strawberry peach with two scoops, Tracy had rhubarb and I had blueberry rhubarb. We girls had one scoop but decided 1 1/2 scoops would last as long as the pie. The pies were most excellent as was Ambika's breakfast croisant sandwich. The coffee is good too. It was a busy place. Then it was time to unwind the shuttle and we all actually got home at a reasonable time for a weekend backpack.

In case anyone is wondering, the Arizona Trail Section Crew is 1/2 way done with the AZT and after this upcoming weekend we will have done more miles on the AZT than each of the last 3 years (it's hard when four people are working to get our schedules to mesh plus we can't do the high daily hiking miles so we have to break it up a bit more).

[ youtube video ]
Named place
Named place
Kunde Mountain Red Mountain
_____________________
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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