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Deerhead Spring Trail - 5 members in 9 triplogs have rated this an average 2.6 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Apr 05 2019
BiFrost
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 345
 Photos 7,218
 Triplogs 854

50 male
 Joined Nov 20 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
Rincon Backpack, AZ 
Rincon Backpack, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Apr 05 2019
BiFrost
Backpack35.20 Miles 10,146 AEG
Backpack35.20 Miles3 Days         
10,146 ft AEG
 
1st trip
We did 3 day backpack in the Rincons which John put together. He got permits for first night at Happy Valley campground so we drove up from Phoenix early and started hiking around 9am. Took us only 2 hours to make it to Happy Valley where we setup up camp. Then headed up Rincon Peak for the afternoon. Nice hike with decent trail and carrying day packs made it easier. Took about 20 minute break on the summit which would have been longer except the strong winds kept it short. Hiked back to camp and then enjoyed a relaxing night around the fire.

Next day we backpacked over to Happy Valley Lookout on Heartbreak Ridge trail. The lookout is still very much intact and was open for us to check it out. Cool spot and glad we took the extra 20 minutes to check it out. The eventual goal was to camp at Manning Camp but from there we stopped by Devils Bathtub first to check it out. Good water at Devils Bathtub with some cascades and some pools. Water was the theme of the weekend as we had no issue finding water at any point. From Devils Bathtub we headed to Manning Camp and had some hail and rain but nothing too bad. Arrived at Manning Camp and setup camp around noon.

In the afternoon it was off to day hike the top. There are many trails on top so we made a loop hitting Spud Rock first and then Mica Mountain. Great views on Spud Rock but Mica is just a high point but no views. A few patches of snow lingering on the north facing slopes. Next stop was Reef Rock which is on the east side facing the Galiuro's with great views and the sun came out so we took a fairly long break there. Then it was back to Manning Camp for the night. It was bit colder at Manning which is 8,000 feet as opposed to Happy Valley which is 6,200 feet. Still relaxing night around camp and there were several other groups in the campground.

Last day we hiked out Turkey Creek trail to make it a loop. Turkey Creek trail is steep but it gets the job done and we were at the bottom in 3 hours. However, to make it a loop hike we did have to walk some road past the Turkey trail head and connect with the Miller Creek trail head. Regardless it went fast and we were at the vehicle before noon. Great weekend in the Rincon's and thanks to John for getting the permits!!
_____________________
2 archives
Apr 02 2019
markthurman53
avatar

 Guides 104
 Routes 544
 Photos 6,493
 Triplogs 444

66 male
 Joined Jun 27 2015
 Tucson, Arizona
Turkey Creek & Misc Trails, AZ 
Turkey Creek & Misc Trails, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 02 2019
markthurman53
Hiking17.30 Miles 5,049 AEG
Hiking17.30 Miles   9 Hrs      2.26 mph
5,049 ft AEG   1 Hour   20 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Did a trail closer to home this time. Headed over to Happy Valley to do the Turkey Creek Trail and various other trails on the east slopes of the Rincons. I have been up in the Rincons many times from the 60's to the present but have never been on a majority of these trails I was on this time. I took the jeep road up to the trail head. This road is definitely a High clearance 4WD road. 4WD is not really required on most of this road but there is one section that definitely requires 4WD, don't know if you could just power up this anymore. Getting to the trail head cuts off 2 miles (4 miles round trip) from this hike making it only 17.3 miles instead of 21 miles and 400 feet less elevation gain.

The first 1.8 miles before the Saguaro National Park Boundary are in National Forest. Nice easy walking along a grassy and sparse juniper tree ridge. Once in the park the trail is very nicely constructed at least for the first half mile, this is to lure you in, then it becomes more like a typical trail in the Catalina and Rincon Mountains, steep and rocky. Some places along this trail the manzanita has encroached on the trail but nothing closely like the Rock Creek Trail in the Mazatzal mountains. The trail does get a little vague in places on the upper end in the pine forests but nothing that should cause a concern if you keep a sharp eye. Definitely not a heavily traveled trail and just coming out of the winter season doesn't help. Mud spring was running lightly and no mud. The sign that says 1 mile from Mud Spring to Deerhead Spring is wrong, someone scratched it out and put 1.2 but it is actually more like 1.4. But what's a couple tenths of a mile here and there, A big deal if it's all uphill.

At the junction with the Deerhead Spring Trail I headed north to the Spud Rock Campground and the East Slope Trail. Deerhead Spring had a light flow or more like an area ground seep, the stream below the creek was running slightly. Aspen trees at the campground still haven't produced leaves yet. Still had some climbing to do and took the Switchback Trail up to the Heartbreak ridge Trail. This is a short .4 mile connector trail. I have not been on the Heartbreak Ridge Trail in over 50 years and it is no longer the super highway it use to be. This use to be one of the main trails up to Manning camp when the X9 ranch was still allowing passage. I took the Heartbreak Ridge Trail to the Fireline Trail and returned on this trail to just below the Devil's Bathtub Trail (I have another hike planned to finish this trail as a loop on the Turkey and Miller Canyon Trails). Did not go to Manning camp since I have been there and done that many times before. Near the summit of the trail there are good views to the south with Rincon Peak being the obvious landmark. There are occasional views to the east from certain sections along the Heartbreak Ridge Trail. Water was still flowing in a couple of the creek crossings on the upper portion of this trail.

Devil's Bathtuib trail is yet another of the trails I have never been on. This is a fairly level trail between the Manning Camp Trail and Heartbreak Ridge Trail. In the middle is Devil's Bathtub. Light flow at the tub and falls. Took my lunch there at 5 hours in. Still a little snow in patches on the sections that don't get much sun, none on the trail. Returned the same way and headed down the East Slope Trail. This is a short .7 mile fairly level trail that will connect up with the Deerhead Springs trail at the Spud Rock Campground. From the Campground it is a long downhill trek back to the trail head.

Great hike and a real good workout. Will probably take me a couple days to recover. Probably good for another couple weeks before it gets too hot and the water stops flowing in the streams. Not sure how permanent any of the springs are.
Named place
Named place
Mud Hole Spring - Mica

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Deer Head Spring Dripping Dripping
more of a ground seep but the creek below was running at about a quart per minute.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Devils Bathtub Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Mud Hole Spring - Mica Dripping Dripping
More than a drip and less than a quart. Not muddy

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Sycamore Creek Medium flow Medium flow
_____________________
Sep 19 2016
tibber
avatar

 Guides 21
 Routes 583
 Photos 26,749
 Triplogs 889

64 female
 Joined Feb 26 2004
 Phoenix, AZ
Manning Camp via the Tub to Turkey Creek TH, AZ 
Manning Camp via the Tub to Turkey Creek TH, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Sep 19 2016
tibber
Hiking9.01 Miles 701 AEG
Hiking9.01 Miles
701 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Partners partners
BiFrost
slowandsteady
writelots
After a nice evening and morning we now had to go back. Kind of sad to leave this place. The question is which way do we want to go back, the way we came or via the Tub? I wanted to see the Tub but it would add about 1 1/2 to our journey and it would be warm as we got toward the bottom of the mountain. K&K assured the trail was nice (cuz after yesterday's North Slope adventure I wasn't in the mood for working too hard again, ha!). I couldn't make up my mind so Wendy said we would do the Tub; which turned out to be the right choice and that way, I got to see one of the "must do" when you come up to Manning Camp.

And wow was that a downhill to get to the Tub. So glad we didn't come up that way which was one of the options we were originally going to do. The hike down thru here is really pretty thru the forest and with occasional views to the far valley and mountains. There were a couple areas with water which is always a nice treat in the desert. The Devil's Bathtub wasn't draining very much but it was still a pretty cool site. We actually spent a little time here hanging around so that was nice and then it was off toward Spud Rock Campground Junction on part of the East Slope Trail.

Once again you had off and on views to the valleys as you hike off and on thru the forest. It's very entertaining hiking up here as the terrain changes quite a bit. We followed some more running water as we continued on part of the East Slope Trail to what we dubbed The Park. It was a clear forest floor with large trees sprouting to the sky. Down the Switchback Trail we went to the ferned meadow of Spud Rock Campground Junction. From there our next stop would be Deer Head Spring. However, there is one part of the trail just above the spring that is a bit difficult to decipher but we made it down though I don't know if it was the right way. We hung at the Spring for a bit. We were trying to take advantage of the shade as much as we could.

The next part of the trail was probably the worst as we headed down to Mud Hole Spring which would be our last shaded stop. The trail is a little gully as you hike down and then you encounter the rock n roll rocky sections. You go thru manzanita sections and more foresty sections though the size of the trees is smaller now. I was having a little trouble getting my pack comfortable so that was not fun. I was disappointed because on my trip up; my pack didn't give me any issues. I packed it like Wendy did; at least I thot so, but it wasn't fitting quite right.

At Mud Hole Spring we hung out and Karl showed me the spring. It didn't have much water in it but enough to filter fairly nicely. We still had quite a bit of down to go but at least on this part, there would be steps that really helped - although I despised them on the way up as I'd rather hike up on the less stable ground than have to lift my body up those steps. Kathy, on the other hand, loves steps on the way up. The trail that didn't have the steps, once again, was in pretty shabby shape. It was also starting to get warmer now but every once in awhile we would get a breeze. We were sure glad to get to the saddle though as from here on out, the trail conditions would be much better.

Karl agreed to one more stop for what little shade there was at the Park Boundary. This was actually kind of nice because we could look back at where we had been. Filtered light was now coming in as the residual from the hurricane was making its way north. This was indeed welcomed even though the humidity came with it. From here it's the hills and ridgeline hike back to the TH. K&K took off and we made our way thru the grassy hillsides and cowsh...t (they're eating well ;) ) to join them. Thx for the beer and gatorade.

I didn't take any video after the Switchback Trail intersection as I was holding on to the mountain so I couldn't really hike and film. I doubt I even took that many pictures once we started heading down. It's too bad really cuz once the filtered light came in, it was good viewing. But by that time, I was just too tired.

Thx Wendy for getting me up and down this mountain and still being my friend after all this and other times. I still don't know how you get me to do those things :-k that are out of my comfort zone and at the edge of my capability. Karl, thx for keeping that fire going on Sunday nite. K&K, Thx for the beer and gatorade and chips.

It was absolutely great! well except for the hard parts :lol:

2-15-2017 finally the two part video:
Part 1 from Manning Camp to Devil's Bathtub [ youtube video ]
Part 2 from Devil's Bathtub toward Turkey Creek Trailhead [ youtube video ]
Named place
Named place
Mud Hole Spring - Mica Rincon Peak
_____________________
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.
1 archive
Sep 17 2016
BiFrost
avatar

 Guides 4
 Routes 345
 Photos 7,218
 Triplogs 854

50 male
 Joined Nov 20 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
Rincon Manning Camp Turkey Creek, AZ 
Rincon Manning Camp Turkey Creek, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Sep 17 2016
BiFrost
Backpack28.91 Miles 7,443 AEG
Backpack28.91 Miles3 Days         
7,443 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Long weekend 3 day backpack in the Rincon Mountains exploring the top of the range. Angela invited us on this trip with Wendy and so we headed out early Saturday morning for Turkey Creek TH. The actual trailhead is near the campground but the road continues on 4wd track another 1.5 miles to where the road stops. We parked there and started about an hour behind Angela and Wendy as we headed up Turkey Creek Trail #34. First 2 miles is along a ridgeline until we hit the Saguaro National Park boundary and shortly after that a register. At this point the trail is pretty much all up gaining about 1100 feet in the next 1.2 miles to Mud Hole Spring. The spring had water but very little to get a filter going. As we took a break we heard voices which would later turn out to be Angela and Wendy and we caught up 3/4 mile above Mud Hole Spring. Above the spring the trees get much thicker with Ponderosa and Oak providing ample shade up to Deerhead Spring. After Deerhead we went by Spud Rock Campground and checked out the spring which had good pool before continuing on to Manning Camp. Once at Manning we were surprised to find no one in the entire camp site and didn't see anyone for the 3 days on the mountain.

Next day we had the whole day to explore the top area....Kathy and I headed out towards Helen's Dome and made it up to the part where rock climbing gear is required. Then we continued on to Spud Rock and took a break enjoying the views....probably the best views of the Catalinas! Next up we hit Mica Mountain which of course is bit of let down from the great views on Spud but it's still the high point. Then we headed down to Mica Meadow Trail which is really nice stroll through the Ponderosa pines and ferns. The trail eventually reaches Reef Rock area so we arrived on the Reef and had lunch with another great view.

From Reef Rock we continued on to Manhead which is right along the trail but requires climbing gear to make the top. Then went over to Duckbill which was a rock scramble to make the top but nice views. And finally the highlight of the day we hiked down to Devils Bathtub to relax the afternoon away. Really nice spot to hang out and next time I think we will wander down canyon further. After hour and half at Devils Bathtub we headed back to Manning Camp for another night around the fire! Interesting note was the amount of water we encountered all weekend. Once on top it seemed like even the smallest drainages had some water in them from all the summer rain. Definitely the most water I've ever seen in the Rincons :)

Next morning we took our time hiking back out Turkey Creek Trail to the vehicles. Very nice weekend...thanks for the invite Angela!
Culture
Culture
Benchmark

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Deer Head Spring Dripping Dripping
just enough water to filter

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Devils Bathtub Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
good flow in the bathtub pool and plenty of water for filtering or any filter system

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Manning Camp Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
really strong flow in the creek with large pools for filtering

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Mud Hole Spring - Mica Dripping Dripping
small amount near the source...maybe just enough to filter

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Spud Rock Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
nice large pool at the spring source...plenty of water to pump or dip sawyer bag
_____________________
3 archives
Sep 17 2016
tibber
avatar

 Guides 21
 Routes 583
 Photos 26,749
 Triplogs 889

64 female
 Joined Feb 26 2004
 Phoenix, AZ
Manning Camp Hike via Turkey Creek Trail #34, AZ 
Manning Camp Hike via Turkey Creek Trail #34, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Sep 17 2016
tibber
Hiking8.65 Miles 3,934 AEG
Hiking8.65 Miles   9 Hrs   10 Mns   1.49 mph
3,934 ft AEG   3 Hrs   22 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners partners
BiFrost
slowandsteady
writelots
She (that being Wendy) is crazy thinking I could hike this trail, let alone want to but nonetheless, this was our mission and who doesn't want to hang out at Manning Camp for a couple nights. So Saturday AM we loaded up the Tamale and headed for the TH. It took us about 1:45 by the time all was said and done. A big :y: to Wendy's driving skills for getting the AWD Subaru she calls Tamale all the way to the end of the 4 wheel drive road. Rambler Hill was a doozie and on the fourth go at it, Wendy grabbed the edge of the road where the grass was to get us by the spot that wouldn't let the Tamale pass. Thank goodness as that road walk would not have been pleasant at all on top of climbing the mountain. I hate to think how bad it would have been if I would have had to hike from the start of the 4-wheel drive road.

And so it begins at 8:20AM, me not being in great hiking shape with a loaded backpack (and that's after Wendy lightened up what I was going to put in it)... up and over the roller coaster ridgeline we went. Each time we went down I whined cuz I know the objective is UP for a very long time (in fact that would be 5 Shaw Buttes in 5 miles). It's beautiful out there right now as everything is so green. When you looked at our objective it really seemed nearly impossible that we would be on top of that, hopefully in time for Happy Hour (I did carry a can of huckleberry beer left over from my birthday party last year).

Once you finish the ridgeline you head southwest along the side of one of the taller hills to the Park Boundary and then arrive at the TH register, seemingly in the middle of nowhere on the saddle. Wendy signed us in as we started our nearly endless "UP" of this mountain. The first part has some beautiful steps and grading but that soon ends as the trail has taken a real beating from all of the rain. And occasionally my new Z-poles (their maiden voyage) would flip out of hold until Wendy pointed out that I hadn't snapped them in :doh: . We would find ourselves stopping quite a bit to check out the flora including this great lemon smelling plant and giant banana yucca fruit. We would also stop and look for Karl and Kathy (K&K) as they would be joining us for our adventure.

We finally made it to Mud Hole Spring (not quite 4 miles, 1351 elev gain with most of that in the last 2 1/2 miles at noon), though we didn't see the spring (didn't look too hard either). We took a break here in the shade as there isn't much until this point. A short way past here I realized I had left my head band and Wendy offered to go back for it. While waiting for her I thot I heard other voices which I did. We stopped about 1/2 hour or so later for lunch once we found some more shade. The trail here is just not good with narrow gullies in the middle of the trail and lots of loose rock. While we were having lunch I heard the voices again and this time it was K&K.

We still had a pretty decent climb, I mean hike, up to Deer Head Spring (5 1/2 miles at 7192 feet) and a couple times it was difficult discerning where the trail was. We did stop a couple times to take in the different views too. The Little Rincons are sure pretty. Karl filtered up some water here and we eventually made it up to Spud Rock Campground intersection (6 miles at 7434 feet) through a very lush fern-filled meadow. K&K went to check out the campground, Wendy went to find the spring, I rested my laurels.

Next would be the Switchback Trail which was really full of flora as well and it sure made some of that UP less painful. Alas, there was still a little over 1/2 of Shaw Butte to go and 2 miles. We topped out at around 8250 (I was thinking 8000 since that's where the camp is but ](*,) ). I was sure pretty tired by this time however everyone was very patient as I whined about the "almosts". We sat on some rocks for a bit before continuing on where we checked out a drainage crossing to see a great view of Wrightson. Yep, I've been there.

As we got closer, we crossed another creek area and you could see the storms had caused a rush of water to come through due to all the debris. Yeah we finally made it to Manning Camp and the smile returned to my face.... that is until we had to go get water after setting up our tents. Thankfully there is a beautiful waterfall that flows into a large pool to enjoy before having to walk back up the hill to camp and now I can sit and drink my beer, CHEERS! and WTG Wendy, you got me UP another Sky Island. We got the fire going fairly quickly as it started to get nippy once that sun starts to go down. It really made a difference too.

Surprisingly, I didn't even go through one battery on my camera which means I didn't take the normal amount of video and pictures as I was obviously hanging onto the mountain for the most part ;) . After finishing off my piece of pizza and some good chatter around the fire, it was time to crawl into my sleeping bag. I made it up into the Rincons :) (with a little help from my friends).

to Park Boundary https://youtu.be/l7 ... TaIk
to Mud Hole Spring https://youtu.be/a6 ... 8MeI
to Spud Rock Campground Jct https://youtu.be/hS ... gMkg
Switchback Trail to Manning Camp https://youtu.be/yS ... dT88
Named place
Named place
Little Rincon Mountains
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation None
there was some flora off and on but not of the autumn kind other than the ferns turning.
_____________________
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.
2 archives
Nov 14 2015
mdfabbrini
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 34
 Photos 338
 Triplogs 397

61 male
 Joined May 25 2014
 Mount Shasta, CA
Devil's Bathtub Trail - Coronado NFTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 14 2015
mdfabbrini
Hiking4.11 Miles 890 AEG
Hiking4.11 Miles   3 Hrs   26 Mns   2.09 mph
890 ft AEG   1 Hour   28 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
A day hike to and from our camp at Spud Rock Spring to get water and to explore the area. The overall backpack trip is described at [ triplog ] .

Coming out of the Spud Rock Spring campsite, we weren't clear on whether to head back towards Deer Head Spring or up the Switchback Trail to catch the trail to Devil's Bathtub. It ended up we took the "wrong trail" or the Deer Head Spring Trail, causing us to drop about 500 feet. This trail, like the Turkey Trail, hasn't got much use or maintenance. But it was pretty, and at the end of the day, created a loop for us. We met the Heartbreak Ridge Trail, headed north for .5 miles until we got to Four Corners, then headed 20 minutes west to Devils Bathtub.

Water was plentiful here. After lunching and napping for an hour and a half, we headed back to Spud Rock Spring via the Devil's Bathtub, East Slope, and Switchback Trails.
Named place
Named place
Devils Bathtub

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Devils Bathtub Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
_____________________
et deinceps per nebula
3 archives
May 23 2015
jrousoshammond
avatar

 Routes 25
 Triplogs 135

31 male
 Joined May 15 2015
 Tucson
Rincon Mountains, AZ 
Rincon Mountains, AZ
 
Backpack avatar May 23 2015
jrousoshammond
Backpack
Backpack3 Days         
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Day 1: Parked at Turkey Creek TH (not at the actual TH, just where the road gets bad), walked to Miller Creek TH, hiked up to Happy Valley, dropped our heavy stuff, and headed up Rincon Peak.

Day 2: HBR trail up to Spud Rock Campground via the Deerhead Spring Trail, again dropped stuff off, then waddled up the rest of the way to see Mica Mtn, Spud Rock, Manning Camp, and all sorts of other goodies I hadn't seen before. Everything up there was amazing and well worth the schlep...

Day 3: Down Turkey Creek Trail. It was a much nicer trail than I was expecting, but it's not something I would want to do during typical May weather given how exposed it is.

No issues aside from a few scary looking clouds the second afternoon and lots of very excited (but non-threatening) bees on the Heartbreak Ridge Trail on the way up to Happy Valley Lookout. The Manzanitas were blossoming and there was a constantly disconcerting buzz the entire time... :scared: Otherwise it's a fantastic trail.
_____________________
2 archives
Mar 24 2015
Jim_H
avatar

 Guides 57
 Routes 51
 Photos 7,916
 Triplogs 1,692

40 male
 Joined Sep 08 2006
 Regulus
Rincon Loop, AZ 
Rincon Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Mar 24 2015
Jim_H
Hiking16.40 Miles 4,500 AEG
Hiking16.40 Miles   8 Hrs   10 Mns   2.14 mph
4,500 ft AEG      30 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Wanting to return to the Rincons since last fall, today was to be a great hike in the main body of the range, though without the Mica MT area. I was really pleased that my car got me to the four wheel drive trailhead, as I took it up the 2 track and started from there, instead of lower down. This gave me more time higher up, and I was able to visit Manning Camp, as a result. The 4WD road was less about clearance, than actual 4WD, and beefy tires would make a difference. However, a fictional AWD civic never would have made it.

The hike was better than expected and I was up in the pines in under 3 hours. I really just hiked through the Deer Head fire area and was less impressed with it than I hoped. This is no central Gila Wilderness. Most of the affects seem to be top killing brush and oaks, and needle cast consumption, but there was less grass than hoped for. I did hike up a ridge (not GPSed) and look at some old growth pines, still with some grass under them. I found the area around Manning Camp to be highly reminiscent of some of the low spots in the WOR, specifically around the nice camping spot with the massive pines. This is because it is almost all pine litter, little grass, and a dense stand of tall poles, with some larger orange barkers, but nothing characteristic of the way it would have been 120 years ago.

The Fire Loop is one of the nicer areas, and the granite domes are fun to look at, and climb on if you chose. In that regard, the Rincons have a Yosemite feel to them. Manning Camp itself is OK, but it just feels like a NPS camp area, nothing that special, save for the water and weather station. The Manning Camp trail south of the camp does have great canyons, falling water, and westward views to the Tucson Mountains. The Devil's Bathtub trail and area is really nice, and if flowing when warm might be a nice place to hangout, but I expect it is dry when warm. Heartbreak Ridge has great views, and as always looking east is fantastic.

With the current appearance of the east slopes, the species composition, and the fire affects, I would almost prefer it had not burned, since the oaks and other brush will coppice, some younger pines were killed, a lot of soil will and has eroded post fire, and it isn't going to return to pine, or mixed oaks over grass anytime soon. The grassy and pine covered areas do look better, and at least fuel loads are reduced. Still, the top of the mountain would benefit from something it will never get: mechanical thinning. The current composition of this area seems to have been influenced by (the Manning's?) grazing a lot more than Mica Mountain proper, but there appears to be slightly more soil here, too.

Overall, a great hike, my longest of the year, and with some serious AEG. It was nice down low, and cool, but tolerable while constantly switching between a sweater and t-shirt up higher. It was also breezy, but that created some lenticular clouds. I think it is still early in the higher terrain, as despite the above normal temps, it is still only late March, and there were fewer bird calls than expected. I did see some mountain quail, I think, or some other birds with flight sounds like a quail. Most of the life is still below 6,000'.
Meteorology
Meteorology
Lenticular Cloud
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated


water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Devils Bathtub Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Manning Camp Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Mud Hole Spring - Mica Quart per minute Quart per minute
_____________________
If you're having trail problems I feel bad for you son, I got 99 problems but hiking ain't one.
Oct 03 2014
Mountain_Rat
avatar

 Guides 11
 Routes 100
 Photos 613
 Triplogs 216

57 male
 Joined Jul 14 2011
 Tucson, AZ
Heartbreak Ridge TrailTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Oct 03 2014
Mountain_Rat
Hiking16.92 Miles 4,086 AEG
Hiking16.92 Miles   10 Hrs   6 Mns   1.81 mph
4,086 ft AEG      45 Mns Break18 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Had a day off and was passing by Mescal, so I whipped it over to Happy Valley for a Rincon Mountain traverse. Not much to report, but with zero negative issues, it was as perfect as this day could get. Headed up the Turkey Creek trail, hit Spud Rock campsite, took the East Slope to Heartbreak Ridge, over to Happy Valley campsite, down the Miller Creek trail and back to the Exploder. Pretty much a sunup to sundown stroll :)
_____________________
Matt
average hiking speed 1.96 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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