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Brittlebush from Picture Rocks - Saguaro NP W - 2 members in 5 triplogs have rated this an average 3 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Aug 24 2017
markthurman53
avatar

 Guides 128
 Routes 620
 Photos 7,368
 Triplogs 500

67 male
 Joined Jun 27 2015
 Tucson, Arizona
SNP West Thunderbird Cactus Canyon Loop, AZ 
SNP West Thunderbird Cactus Canyon Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Aug 24 2017
markthurman53
Hiking12.00 Miles 1,511 AEG
Hiking12.00 Miles   4 Hrs   57 Mns   2.77 mph
1,511 ft AEG      37 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
After living in Tucson for 60 years I am finally going to do some trails in Saguaro National Park West. I actually did one hike here back in 1970 to Wasson peak on a Moonlight hike while in High school. Today's hike was from the El Camino Del Cerro Trail Head. Started out early morning on the Thunderbird Trail hoping to be back before 11:00 to try and beat the heat. After hiking a lot in the Saguaro National Park east these trails seemed a lot more rugged and less traveled (at least the ones in the SNP East lower park). The Thunderbird trail after the Thunderbird Mine is really washed out from the rains this summer, wasn't difficult to navigate though. Stopped by the Gila Monster Mine to check it out but didn't spend much time, after all it is just a hole in the ground (Learned a lot more about it on the internet after the hike). The Thunderbird trail heads out to the north from the Gila Monster Mine and continues up a gradual slope to the top of a ridge about 40 feet up. It is so nice to climb to a ridge that isn't 1000+ feet up like in Payson last week. at this ridge the Brittlebush Trail heads off to the west up to another small ridge. The brittlebush trail is not marked at the junction with the Thunderbird and can easily be missed if not looking for it, I know, I missed it but thanks to my GPS I didn't have to go but a couple of feet before noticing it. From the ridge the trail heads down to the eastern most tributary of the Picture Rocks Wash and stays in that wash all the way to the Ironwood Forest Trail. The trail is signed at the junction of the Brittlebush and Picture Rocks Wash and also at the junction with the Ironwood Forest Trail. Since the washes had just run from the rains the day before the walking in the Washes was fairly easy. From the Picture Rocks wash I took the Ironwood Forest trail to the Cam-Boh Trail. This is a very easy trail to follow and appears to be a little more used than the Brittlebush Trail. This trail goes through a "forest" of Ironwood trees that seem to be fairly young, I did not see any large trees. I was enjoying the scenery so mush that I was not watching the trail and almost stepped on a Western Diamond Back rattle snake. I managed to not step on it somehow and stopped to get some pictures of it. It was nice enough to let me take a few pictures and I went on my way reminding myself to watch the trail. The Ironwood Forest trail ends up following a wash the last half mile to the Cam-Boh Trail. from the Cam-Boh trail I head up another wash to the Ringtail trail that follows, you guessed it another wash. I took the Ringtail Trail to the Picture Rocks Road and then hiked this trail to south to the Picture Rocks Wash. The Ringtail Trail follows the Wash for about .2 miles before exiting on to a real trail to the West of the wash. This trail is very easy walking and skirts around the west side of Picture Rocks Peak. From this trail the Yuma Mine can be seen to the Southeast. This is one of two mines in the park that at one time were very profitable. Once at the Picture Rocks Wash I head up stream to the signed junction of the Cactus Canyon Trail. The cactus canyon Trail heads south but I only stay on it until the signed Coyote Pass Trail. The Coyote Pass Trail heads east up about 40 feet to the pass and then down the other side to the Gila Monster Trail. I did not have a GPS route so I was not sure if the Gila Monster Trail existed (It was not listed on the Park map but was at least called out on the HAZ site but no GPS route). I continued down the Coyote Pass Trail until I figures I did .8 miles (about 20 minutes) and decided that the Gila Monster Trail didn't exist so I headed back up stream and crossed over a small ridge that would take me back to the Cactus Canyon Trail. Once over that ridge I came across a trail and figures it was the Gila Monster Trail so I followed that down to where the Coyote Trail joined it. I went up the Coyote Trail about 100 yards and came to the point where I turned around. I was just 100 yards short of my destination when I turned around. From here I returned via the Gila Monster Trail and saw a sign for the Abington Trail. I saw this trail on one of the park maps but was not listed anywhere else. This trail will take you to a Trail head along Abington Road I assume, will have to check this out on another trip. Once back on the Cactus Canyon Trail I head north on this trail to where it meets the Coyote pass Trail and return to the trail head back along the Cactus Canyon Trail and Thunderbird Trail. Great hike but it was getting a little warm by the time I hit the cactus Canyon Trail the second time.
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Mar 15 2016
The_Dude
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 Guides 1
 Routes 114
 Photos 1,355
 Triplogs 345

42 male
 Joined Jun 10 2011
 Phoenix, AZ
Saguaro West Double, AZ 
Saguaro West Double, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Mar 15 2016
The_Dude
Hiking4.36 Miles 1,181 AEG
Hiking4.36 Miles   2 Hrs   11 Mns   2.42 mph
1,181 ft AEG      23 Mns Break12 LBS Pack
 
no photosets
1st trip
For some reason, I was really feeling like getting in some off trail today. Freshly armed with my newly renewed Saguaro Annual pass, I made my way out from the El Camino del Cerro TH about 3:30. North on the Thunderbird trail to the old mining prospect, and then I started up the eastern side of 3373. I made it up to the ridgeline and continued up to the highpoint for a short break. I continued down the northwest slope and dropped into the Brittlebush wash. This was a nice stretch, almost better than the actual trail. I reconnected with the trail in about a half mile, and then circled east to 3037. I headed up the south face of this one, I actually found it to be more difficult for the sake of more loose footing, and much more cholla. I took another break on top, and then back to the trail and around to the van. Views were good, I could see the Superstitions to the north, but a little hazy. Good off trail excursion, I made it through with only a few little scratches. Shorts approved bushwhack! Two more peaks I haven't yet climbed as well.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
Good Brittlebush show, some Creosote bloom, and some occasional Desert Zinnia and Penstemons
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Nov 28 2009
rally_toad
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 Guides 22
 Routes 4
 Photos 512
 Triplogs 444

30 male
 Joined May 17 2007
 CA
Brittlebush from Picture Rocks - Saguaro NP WTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 28 2009
rally_toad
Hiking6.20 Miles 450 AEG
Hiking6.20 Miles
450 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Did one of the loops in Saguaro West connecting Ironwood Forest, Brittlebush, Thunderbird, Castus Canyon, Picture Rocks Wash, and Rigtail trails for a nice easy hike. Great area of Saguaro West.
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"Who are you guys??!!" -Farnsworth
Feb 03 2008
fricknaley
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 Guides 93
 Routes 384
 Photos 3,920
 Triplogs 3,008

45 male
 Joined Jun 20 2003
 Tucson, AZ
Brittlebush from Picture Rocks - Saguaro NP WTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 03 2008
fricknaley
Hiking3.80 Miles 450 AEG
Hiking3.80 Miles
450 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Out for a cloudy stroll with Sierra in the pack. We took the Ironwood Forest trail to Picture Rocks Wash. This is a perfect little desert walk. Sierra is starting to get comfortable in the pack... :)
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hi
Nov 25 2007
fricknaley
avatar

 Guides 93
 Routes 384
 Photos 3,920
 Triplogs 3,008

45 male
 Joined Jun 20 2003
 Tucson, AZ
Brittlebush from Picture Rocks - Saguaro NP WTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 25 2007
fricknaley
Hiking6.20 Miles 450 AEG
Hiking6.20 Miles   2 Hrs   20 Mns   2.66 mph
450 ft AEG
 no routes
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Out running around and scouting out some future stuff. Sweet.
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hi
average hiking speed 2.62 mph

WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

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