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Sabino Canyon to Catalina State Park - 4 members in 13 triplogs have rated this an average 4 ( 1 to 5 best )
13 triplogs
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13 Triplogs
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Apr 30 2016
fearnestiv
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 Routes 22
 Photos 70
 Triplogs 20

72 male
 Joined Feb 10 2015
 Catalina, AZ
Sabino Canyon to Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 30 2016
fearnestiv
Hiking20.00 Miles 4,945 AEG
Hiking20.00 Miles
4,945 ft AEG18 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
First hike from Catalina State Park to Sabino Canyon for me. We got the climbing out of the way by 10 am. I was joined by Elisabeth Wheeler and Ray Peale. We started hiking a little after 6 am and made it to the Sabino parking lot by 4:30 pm. Weather was great and we had some nice cloud cover and breeze in the afternoon as we hiked down Sabino Canyon and Phone Line trail. The highlight was a stop at Humble Pie in La Encentada for some great pizza and adult beverages.
The upper portion of the Romero Canyon trail is becoming overgrown and there was some poison ivy scattered around mostly near the wash crossings. There was water available at both the lower and upper camps in Romero Canyon, and lower down at Romero Springs/Pools. Lots of camping activity at Hutch's Pools which is probably typical for Saturday.
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Wildflowers Observation Light
Saw quite a variety of flowers. Most notable to me were some scarlet bugler, blossoms on New Mexico locust, and some blooms on manzanita. Scattered rose mallow, white mariposa lilies.
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Feb 01 2014
boydstowe
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 Routes 4
 Photos 76
 Triplogs 199

52 male
 Joined Mar 28 2011
 Oro Valley, Az
Sabino Canyon to Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 01 2014
boydstowe
Hiking20.00 Miles 4,945 AEG
Hiking20.00 Miles   8 Hrs      2.67 mph
4,945 ft AEG      30 Mns Break20 LBS Pack
 no routesno photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Actually did this in reverse with some friends. It was coooold in the pass
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
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Skype: boyd.stowe
email: boyd.stowe@gmail.com
Mar 03 2013
boydstowe
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 Routes 4
 Photos 76
 Triplogs 199

52 male
 Joined Mar 28 2011
 Oro Valley, Az
Sabino Canyon to Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 03 2013
boydstowe
Hiking21.00 Miles 4,945 AEG
Hiking21.00 Miles   8 Hrs   37 Mns   2.76 mph
4,945 ft AEG   1 Hour    Break15 LBS Pack
 no routesno photosets
Partners none no partners
I haven't done this in a while. My legs held up pretty good though :-)
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
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Skype: boyd.stowe
email: boyd.stowe@gmail.com
Feb 10 2013
fricknaley
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 Guides 93
 Routes 384
 Photos 3,875
 Triplogs 2,942

45 male
 Joined Jun 20 2003
 Tucson, AZ
Sabino Canyon to Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 10 2013
fricknaley
Hiking19.86 Miles 4,778 AEG
Hiking19.86 Miles   8 Hrs   59 Mns   2.84 mph
4,778 ft AEG   2 Hrs    Break15 LBS Pack
 
no photosets
i've been telling preston forever how much fun a trans-catalina hike is, so we finally did one. with the recent rain and snow i figured it would be a good time and it certainly was. there was a ton of water but the west fork crossings were no problem. couple of inches of snow coming down from romero pass, but again no problem. quite cold at the start and coming down from romero pass but otherwise a very nice day.

after talking smack about it, the time came to man up...and the world's most FREEZING cannonballs were done in Hutch's pool :o

the big waterfall in upper romero was flowing nicely, which was a treat

overall an excellent winter hike through the catalinas
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hi
Feb 10 2013
PrestonSands
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 Guides 168
 Routes 149
 Photos 5,560
 Triplogs 1,349

43 male
 Joined Apr 12 2004
 Oro Valley, AZ
Sabino Canyon to Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Feb 10 2013
PrestonSands
Hiking19.86 Miles 4,778 AEG
Hiking19.86 Miles   8 Hrs   59 Mns   2.84 mph
4,778 ft AEG   2 Hrs    Break16 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
After talking about it for years, Nick and I left embarked into the Catalinas on a sub-freezing Sunday morning for a trans-Catalina hike. Sabino Canyon was just as rugged, scenic, and amazing as I had remembered. It was the start of an unforgetable day...

Leaving the Sabino Canyon Road behind, we climbed higher into the canyon, and arrived at the West Fork Trail for the second leg of our journey. We turned west, crossed several roaring side creeks, and soon reached Hutch's Pool.

On our last hike to Hutch's Pool, we had contemplated a Hutch's Cannonball, but it hadn't happened. Today, we vowed it would, despite the cold, breezy weather. After all, the sun was out. :D I positioned my iPod on a rock to record the event. Nick went first, leaping from the rock wall. Splash! He emerged from the icy abyss with a shriek, and realized his glasses were missing. No!!! :o Thankfully, he found them quickly, and made a painfully cold swim to the shore. It was now my turn. I picked my landing spot and jumped. I surfaced from the coldest water I had ever been in, screaming something that has escaped my memory, and scaled the rock wall like a spider. Wow!!! That was incredible (or insane :lol: ) and totally worth it. Quite envigorating.

Having dried off and warmed up, we continued on, higher into the Catalinas. We entered oak woodland dotted with Schott's Yuccas (I love that classic Southern AZ combo :D ), and then snowy pine forest, as we worked our way up the canyon. Mighty Cathedral Rock and the snow covered Rincons came into view as we neared Romero Pass, where we paused for lunch.

Dropping into Romero Canyon, the temperature dropped sharply, and we donned our winter clothes again, as we slid down a snow blanketed trail. I was blown away by the Romero Canyon Trail. Rugged topography, pines, mighty oaks, waterfalls, sweet campsites, distant desert views, and a very "sky island" experience: Romero had it all. After several amazing miles, we arrived at Nick's playground, Romero Pools. A beautiful place, indeed. I could have stayed there for the rest of the day admiring the scenery. We continued on...

We peered into lower Romero Canyon's rugged serpentine gorge, studying the pools and waterfalls, as we began our descent into saguaro country. To the south, the impossibly rugged cliffs of Pusch Ridge captured my attention. I longed to hike to the summits of Table Mountain and Bighorn Mountain, if only I had the time.

Nick and I entered Catalina State Park, where the mountains gave way to foothills, and human traffic increased. My eyes returned to Romero Canyon and the Catalina highlands. "I want to go again!" One more creek crossing and we were back at the parking lot, where clean shirts awaited. Nick and I made a quick trip to the Quick Trip for beverages, then drove back to Sabino to retrieve my truck, which was on its final Tucson visit.

Thank you, Nick, for a most excellent adventure! :D :D :D :D :D :D

I'll be back, Tucson. One of these days, for good. :y:

Hutch's Cannonball and more:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ZUZEmkL ... In84XU1cQw
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"As soon as I can I’m sneaking back in them mountains..." -Johnny Paycheck
Nov 03 2012
rubiconsmith
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 Triplogs 2

54 male
 Joined Nov 11 2012
 Tucson, AZ
Sabino Canyon to Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Backpack avatar Nov 03 2012
rubiconsmith
Backpack20.00 Miles 4,945 AEG
Backpack20.00 Miles2 Days   4 Hrs      
4,945 ft AEG   13 Hrs   30 Mns Break38 LBS Pack
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Great family hike including wife, and kids (13,10,8.6,4).
We started at the Sabino Canyon end. We have never seen this side of the range and really enjoyed it. The weather was perfect. Lots of water at Hutch's pool and in Romero Canyon.
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Autumn Foliage Observation Light
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Mar 19 2011
boydstowe
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 Routes 4
 Photos 76
 Triplogs 199

52 male
 Joined Mar 28 2011
 Oro Valley, Az
Sabino Canyon to Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 19 2011
boydstowe
Hiking20.00 Miles 4,945 AEG
Hiking20.00 Miles   8 Hrs      2.67 mph
4,945 ft AEG      30 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
 no routesno photosets
Partners none no partners
I actually did this trip in the reverse order. I parked my car in Catalina State Park and hiked to Sabino Canyon.
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Skype: boyd.stowe
email: boyd.stowe@gmail.com
3 archives
Mar 12 2011
boydstowe
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 Routes 4
 Photos 76
 Triplogs 199

52 male
 Joined Mar 28 2011
 Oro Valley, Az
Sabino Canyon to Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 12 2011
boydstowe
Hiking20.00 Miles 4,945 AEG
Hiking20.00 Miles   8 Hrs      2.67 mph
4,945 ft AEG      30 Mns Break10 LBS Pack
 no routesno photosets
Partners none no partners
The first time I've tried this hike.... Very long on a hot day. I actually did it in reverse, from Catalina State Park to Sabino Canyon
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Skype: boyd.stowe
email: boyd.stowe@gmail.com
Jan 29 2011
GrottoGirl
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 Guides 3
 Routes 311
 Photos 11,581
 Triplogs 1,356

45 female
 Joined Sep 18 2009
 Tucson, AZ
Sabino Canyon to Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 29 2011
GrottoGirl
Hiking20.29 Miles 4,945 AEG
Hiking20.29 Miles   8 Hrs   30 Mns   2.39 mph
4,945 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
SAHC - Group
RedwallNHops
We joined the Southern Arizona Hiking Club on a great adventure this weekend that included the annual SAHC Winter Picnic.

We started this morning at 5:30 in the dark. With just the light of a crescent moon and the stars, we walked up the road to the trail at the end. We could hear the creek and an owl in the background as we walked. It's nice to let your ears take over when walking in the dark.

As we were hiking along the switchbacks up to the junction with the Phoneline trail the day was beginning to brighten. There were some nice views of the sunrise light hitting Rattlesnake and Cathedral Peak. We even saw some verbena growing in a couple spots along the trail.

We flew past Hutch's Pool, we had been there about a month ago and figured not much had changed. We did stop for a bite after we had risen up out of the creek bed above the Pool.

Soon, we were hiking in one of my favorite areas of the Catalina's, a oak forest that becomes is mixed with some juniper, pine, and the tall Arizona Cypress as you climb. This was the third time I've been to that area and each time I love it even more. I say that I'm going to camp at the junction of the West Fork and the Cathedral Rock Trail someday (hopefully soon!). There are some really nice campsites in that area that would make for a great weekend backpack. The creek looks dry there but we have in the past found water up the creek a bit flowing in a pool from a nice terraced small waterfall.

From this point until Romero Pools I was on new-to-me trail. We switchbacked up through an old burn area that was being taken over by oak and manzanita. There were a couple spots where the manzanita were flowering. We got to Romero Pass where we were greeted with views of Rincon Peak, Mica Mountain, Helen's Dome, along with the West fork of Sabino Canyon on one side and Romero Canyon on the other. We had a lunch break at the pass while enjoying the view.

From the top of the Pass down about a quarter of a mile we encountered a bit of old snow that had crusted over and was a bit icy. The steepness combined with the snow made for an interesting descent. Soon the snow was good and I noticed that the top part of Romero Canyon was nicely wooded. We discovered several nice campsites along the way. There is water in the Canyon right now. I find it wonderful that we had one good storm over NY and it has feed the creeks for a month without petering out.

When we had about 5 miles left we left the nice wooded surrounding and were plunged back into desert. Shortly after that you could hear water rushing over some falls, in the distance, in the canyon bottom. Soon, we got to the higher pools and we started to see people. By the time we hit Romero Pools there were people everywhere. It was a shock to the system after having gone about 17 miles without having to deal with a lot of people.

I battled my way around the hordes and was relieved at the end to be done (and not because of the distance)! We made it to the group picnic area just at the start of the picnic. What a great way to end a long distance hike. The food and company was wonderful.

We bummed a ride back to Sabino and then rushed home to get ready for a Wine Tasting Party. Hmm, less than 7 miles to hit 100 miles for January. If I didn't know any better, I'd think I am nuts!
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Wildflowers Observation Isolated
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Jan 29 2011
RedwallNHops
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 Guides 1
 Routes 10
 Photos 396
 Triplogs 1,132

45 male
 Joined Dec 22 2003
 Tucson, AZ
Sabino Canyon to Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 29 2011
RedwallNHops
Hiking21.00 Miles 4,945 AEG
Hiking21.00 Miles
4,945 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners partners
SAHC - Group
GrottoGirl
Did this with SAHC for the annual winter picnic. Not too bad for a 20 miler.
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Mar 28 2010
walkalot
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 Photos 28
 Triplogs 36

58 male
 Joined Dec 05 2010
 tucosn, az
Sabino Canyon to Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 28 2010
walkalot
Hiking16.00 Miles 4,945 AEG
Hiking16.00 Miles   9 Hrs      1.78 mph
4,945 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I rode the early tram to the top of Sabino and started out like gang busters. Big time lactic burn in my calves but wore it off once I descended into West Fork. My only time up this trail past Hutch's Pool and really enjoyed it. Nice trail with manageable grades.

Once I dropped into Romero canyon from the pass, I was in pain. I couldn't beleive I had backpacked up this back in the 90s. I had cold barley wine waiting in the car at the state park, and the thought of that really helped get me through the back side of this death march. Check out the photo I posted of the backside of Cathedral Rock.
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Dec 12 2009
fricknaley
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 Guides 93
 Routes 384
 Photos 3,875
 Triplogs 2,942

45 male
 Joined Jun 20 2003
 Tucson, AZ
Sabino Canyon to Catalina State ParkTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Dec 12 2009
fricknaley
Hiking20.00 Miles 4,945 AEG
Hiking20.00 Miles   9 Hrs      2.22 mph
4,945 ft AEG
 
no photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I finally completed this hike after wanting to do it for a long time and having my first planned attempt washed out.

I hit the Sabino Road in the dark at 6:30 and was treated to the blinking lights up on Bigelow. Crossing Sabino Creek was a little hairy in the dark but turned out OK. The sun came up as I hit the Phoneline and was a spectacular beginning to the day. I was feeling good and flying through the first leg of the hike to West Fork junction. Once here, I decided to slow it down a little and take in the scene. The crossing at the West Fork junction was dry, the big crossing before Hutch's Pool was a little tricky but doable. I've been here before when it's just downright undoable, but not today. Next stop Hutch's...I spent a good 30 minutes here chilling out and enjoying one of the true gems of Sabino Basin. Surprisingly, I was the only one there. The water levels in the pool were high, and the little feeder waterfalls at the north end flanked by the big sycamore were just picture perfect. The next stretch of West Fork to the Cathedral Rock junction was filled with ohhh-ahh moments as the scenery varied from huge canyon to shaded riparian.

I powered up with some grub at the Cathedral Rock junction and met what I can only guess was a badger ripping around in a tree stump. The last climb up to Romero Pass was a little cold, windy and difficult but not too bad. The otherwordly views back to the snowy Rincons was helpful motivation.

At the pass I was delighted to hear "I could smell you way before I could see you" ringing down the canyon from my dad, who had climbed up Romero Canyon to meet me and hike out together...what a rockstar. We had a very pleasant, jelly-legged hike down Romero Canyon with my dad making me laugh the whole way like he always does.

I will likely do this, or some variant every winter as I found the whole experience just exhilarating.
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Jan 27 2001
rwstorm
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 Guides 1
 Routes 125
 Photos 20,245
 Triplogs 918

72 male
 Joined Feb 28 2003
 Tucson, AZ
Romero Canyon PoolsTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 27 2001
rwstorm
Hiking5.60 Miles 1,450 AEG
Hiking5.60 Miles
1,450 ft AEG
 no routes
Partners none no partners
SAHC - Group
This hike was part of the activities associated with SAHC's annual winter picnic...2001 style. It is probably the most popular of their social events, most of the time being held at Catalina State Park. I joined the group back in 1990 and had been to one other of these back in 1991. I made a decision to get into hiking more seriously in 2001, so back I went to see some old friends and make new ones. The routine is to have several hikes offered in the morning, with food being served after 2 PM when the various hikers and non-hikers converge. One of the traditional hikes offered is Sabino Canyon to Catalina SP for the folks who want a serious workout. The idea is they start real early and get to the park in the afternoon VERY hungry! After chowing down and socializing, awards are given out for various accomplishments, etc, before things wrap up for the day. Some years are nicer than others weatherwise, but the event goes on no matter what. This one happened to take place in the middle of a pretty significant storm. This made for concern for the hikers coming from Sabino Canyon, some in their 70's! :scared: They got back later than usual, but all returned safely. I hiked up to the pools with the Olson's and Erika Hartz, whose husband Earl was one of those doing the long hike over Romero Pass. Seeing what we did just going to the pools made her anxious about Earl, but we liked the happy ending later in the day. :)

Wet, cold, and wild sums it up pretty well. :o Brrr!

Water report? Yeah, there was plenty around for sure! :lol:
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Onward into oblivion!
average hiking speed 2.54 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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