Pontatoc Canyon Trail – 2/5/2017 and 2/9/2017

February 2017.
Shallow water near the start of the Pontatoc Trail – this area is more often seen completely dry… February 2017.

It is always a treat to start the Pontatoc Trail and see water flowing in the first wash – as you might expect farther up the Pontatoc Canyon Trail there was water at each crossing of Pontatoc Canyon. New-to-me on this hike was watching the moonrise over Pontatoc Ridge – I wonder if, or how many times, it has risen behind me on other hikes, but tired and staring down at the rocky trail in front of me I missed it…

February 2017.
Looking into Pontatoc Canyon from the Pontatoc Canyon Trail – in the lower right section of the picture you can see a section of the trail (sometimes bypassed by a scramble up the canyon!) February 2017.
February 2017.
A small spill in Pontatoc Canyon. February 2017.
February 2017.
Sunset on the Pontatoc Canyon Trail. February 2017.
February 2017.
Saguaros – end of the day looking down towards Tucson from the Pontatoc Canyon Trail. February 2017.
February 2017.
Moon over Pontatoc Ridge. February 2017.

Pontatoc Ridge Trail – 4/3/2016

Looking across Pontatoc Canyon, over Finger Rock Canyon and up to Prominent Point, Finger Rock and the Finger Rock Guard. March 2016.
Looking across Pontatoc Canyon, over Finger Rock Canyon and up to Prominent Point, Finger Rock and the Finger Rock Guard. March 2016.
Cholla flower in the sun. April 2016.
Cholla flower in the sun. April 2016.
Loosing the light while descending the Pontatoc Ridge Trail - Tucson city lights in background. April 2016.
Loosing the light while descending the Pontatoc Ridge Trail – Tucson city lights in background. April 2016.

Pontatoc Ridge Trail

End of the Day Sun in Pontatoc Canyon – 3/13/2016

End of the day glow in Pontatoc Canyon. March 2016.
End of the day glow in Pontatoc Canyon. March 2016.

We have been returning to the Pontatoc Canyon Trail more frequently lately – it has been interesting to watch the sun changing angles on the landscape and the subtle changes of the the desert seasons – in spite of the beauty I suspect the heat may keep us away during the summer months…

Sun and Saguaro in Pontatoc Canyon. March 2016.
Sun and Saguaro in Pontatoc Canyon. March 2016.
A section of the Pontatoc Ridge Cliffs. March 2016.
A section of the Pontatoc Ridge Cliffs. March 2016.

Death, Wildflowers, Rescues, Falls – 2/28/2016

A Saguaro floating above the shadows on the slopes of Pontatoc Canyon. February 2016.
A Saguaro floating above the shadows on the slopes of Pontatoc Canyon. February 2016.

The latest Santa Catalina Bighorn Sheep Reintroduction Project update was recently released:

  • Ewe #39555 was killed by a mountain lion 2/14 or 2/15 – the lion was pursued but not found/killed.
  • 44 collared sheep are known to be alive – with a number of collars out of battery life and continued breeding in the range this count is less relevant than it was 12+ months ago – although the information from this subset of the population is still very interesting.
  • 18 lambs have been seen this season!

Look beyond poppies for additional worthy wildflowers – Arizona Daily Star, Best places to see Arizona’s wildflowers – Arizona Republic: Wildflowers!!! Notes on some of the flowers that are blooming and a mention for Catalina State Park as a great place to see wildflowers.

Hiker injured, rescued from Seven Falls on horseback – Tucson News Now: A leg injury left a hiker unable to walk in the Seven Falls Area – the hiker was taken out on horse by the Southern Arizona Mounted Search and Rescue.

PCSD rescues hiker off of Windy Point – KVOA.com: A hiker fell and suffered a broken leg in “a remote rocky area” near Windy Point – the hiker was flown out by the Sheriff’s Department’s helicopter “SHERIFF 1” – video from the helicopter of the nighttime pick up.

Seven Falls: A magnet for waterfall watchers – Arizona Daily Star: Some details on the popular hike to Seven Falls with a few pictures.

Rescues/Accidents/Incidents including information from the SARCI Newsletter:

  • Sutherland Trail 2/12/2016 – A hiker intended to go up Sutherland and then come back down via the Mount Lemmon Trail and Romero Canyon Trail but lost the Sutherland Trail in the snow and was not prepared for night hiking – the hiker was able to hike out with an escort.
  • Romero Canyon Trail 2/21/2016 – A hiker called saying he was ill and in Romero Pass – the hiker was able to hike down and refused help other than gatorade.
Sunset in Pontatoc Canyon. February 2016.
Sunset in Pontatoc Canyon. February 2016.

Pontatoc Canyon – 5/24/2015

The water seems to be almost gone from Pontatoc Canyon – there was only a single small pool along the Pontatoc Canyon Trail, crowded with Water Striders – waiting for the summer rains I guess.

1505 Water Strider in Pontatoc Canyon
A Water Strider in a shrinking pool in Pontatoc Canyon. May 2015.

After crossing Pontatoc Canyon for the last time the trail becomes increasingly faint – for awhile I lost the trail, eventually wandering back onto the thin track thru the Shin Daggers – after a short break at the end of the trail it was time to head down…

1505 Point 5391 from the Pontatoc Canyon Trail
Looking up at Point 5391 from the Pontatoc Canyon Trail. May 2015.
1505 Old Platform off the Pontatoc Canyon Trail
An old platform near the Pontatoc Canyon Trail. May 2015.