Bug Spring Trail

Sunset from the Bug Spring Trail. February 2012Sunset from the Bug Spring Trail. February 2012

Overview

This popular hiking and mountain biking trail runs between the Gordon Hirabayashi Recreation Site area and Bear Canyon.

Hike Stats

  • Hike Type: Out and Back
  • Hiking Distance: 9.3 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 2,000'
  • Elevation Loss: 2,000'
  • Highest Elevation: 6,275'
  • Lowest Elevation: 4,950'

Location

Drive

  • Driving Distance from Speedway Campbell: 21.6 miles
  • Driving Time from Speedway Campbell: 45 Minutes
  • Vehicle Access: Paved Roads/Passenger Car (Mountain Road - be careful of weather conditions!)

Details

  • Fee: No
  • Dogs: Yes
  • Bikes: Yes

Other Notes

Bug Spring Trail Elevation Profile

Bug Spring Trail Elevation Profile

Driving Directions

Google Maps Directions from the Speedway and Campbell intersection in Tucson to Bug Spring Trailhead.

Quick version:

  • Drive East on Speedway (5.0 miles)
  • Left on Wilmot and continue on Tanque Verde (4.3 miles)
  • Left on Catalina Highway (12.2 miles)
  • Signs will help you find the turn into this trailhead.

On the Bug Spring Trail climbing to the ridge with the Bug Spring drainage to the east. March 2014On the Bug Spring Trail climbing to the ridge with the Bug Spring drainage to the east. March 2014

Trail Notes

The mileages and elevations below are approximate (don't expect the values below to match your GPS exactly).

  • 0.0 miles, 4950′: Park at the Bug Spring Trailhead (Alternative: There is a connecter trail that leaves the Gordon Hirabayashi Recreation Site near the upper parking area at a large Forest Service Trail Sign).
  • 0.05 miles, 4950′: Signed junction of the Bug Spring Trail and the connecter trail to the Gordon Hirabayashi Recreation Site – this connecter is part of the Arizona Trail Wilderness Bypass.
  • 1.3 miles, 5500′: The trail crosses a canyon, there is a small waterfall/drop down canyon that is visible from the highway [Waypoint BST01].
  • 2.4 miles, 5950′: The trail leaves the ridge and descends north into the canyon [Waypoint BST02].
  • 2.7 miles, 5800′: Trail arrives at the bottom of the canyon east of Bear Canyon – the trail runs along stream (seasonal) crossing several times [Waypoint BST03].
  • 3.5 miles, 5900′: The trail switchbacks up from the canyon bottom and then continues along the hillside of the canyon [Waypoint BST04]
  • 4.0 miles, 6275′: The highpoint of the trail along the ridge east of Bear Canyon – from here the trail descends into Bear Canyon [Waypoint BST05].
  • 4.5 miles, 5900′: Arrive at the Lower Green Mountain (Upper Bug Spring) Trailhead. There are not any services at this trailhead but there are bathrooms at the picnic area down the highway.

Looking towards the cliffs above Prison Camp with Mount Wrightson in the background. March 2014Looking towards the cliffs above Prison Camp with Mount Wrightson in the background. March 2014

Following the canyon east of Bear Canyon. March 2014Following the canyon east of Bear Canyon. March 2014

Maps

Map  via Gmap4  with GPX

About to cross the General Hitchcock Highway on the Bug Spring Trail connector to the Gordon Hirabayashi Recreation Site. March 2014About to cross the General Hitchcock Highway on the Bug Spring Trail connector to the Gordon Hirabayashi Recreation Site. March 2014

Update Notes

  • 2017/8/15 – HikeLemmon posts added to Resources
  • 2017/7/31 – Img Srcset update, fix two typos in picture captions
  • 2017/4/28 – Broken links removed
  • 2014/3/27 – improved the GPX and map notes, improved hiking notes, added pictures
  • 2014/3/2 – Updated format and converted to WordPress