Posts Tagged With: San Pedro River

Up Hot Springs Canyon

2020-04-13

We’re east of Tucson in the San Pedro Valley. We’re exploring and looking for good hikes away from the crowds created by bored Covid 19 refuges, the captives in their own homes out on the trails to blow off steam. We have stumbled onto a fine walk in the dry riverbed and an ancient and fun geological structure:

There is still some afternoon left, as we climb into the 4runner in pursuit of a place to simply pitch a tent.

I know that the trail that we intend to hike tomorrow is up the airport road. Narrow “Hot Springs Canyon” empties out into the broad flood plain and generally dries up before it reaches the San Pedro River. It crosses the road that goes to Cascabel.

We once approached the same canyon from the upstream side. There, the Nature Conservancy has bought up Muleshoe Ranch to protect against destructive incursions into the lush canyon’s riparian strip. Here is that trip:

https://thefreerangenaturist.org/2017/04/14/muleshoe-ranch/

I had studied the satellite images and learned that the road ends in a parking lot. Further investigation has garnered another blessing and a kindness. Continue reading

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San Pedro: Journey to a Sacred Space

2020-04-12

Weather has been changing by the day, and so has gone our vacation schedule. We have had our time dwindled to three days and one of those is still iffy. Our location changed from four days at the Eden Hot Springs, which was killed by Covid19. Our “Plan B” was look at some mountain watershed, mid to lower elevations. This has changed several times. Now we are heading for a tour with several hikes associated with  the San Pedro River Valley. Such as it sometimes goes, for spoiled warm weather naked people.

The first day is to explore the riparian riverbed of the San Pedro near Cascabel, Arizona. I have been scouring satellite photos of the area and anything on the internet about access into the river. There is supposedly a four and a half mile stretch that has flowing water, but I’m not yet sure just where that is.

We begin with a drive out on the sleepy two lane road to Cascabel.

Spring flowers are popping up everywhere.

Some places are covered in color.

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The San Pedro River: Part II

2018-05-20

We awaken in into an Eden in the San Pedro River. It is time for a stripped down walk about.

Part #1 can be found here:

https://thefreerangenaturist.org/2018/07/12/the-san-pedro-river-part-i/

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The San Pedro River: Part I

2018-05-19

The San Pedro River flows north, somehow a rarity in North America. It hosts over two hundred bird species. This is a major migration corridor for 85% of our bird species. The river is part of the two percent of Arizona’s landmass that is considered riparian area.

Ninety-five percent of these riparian water sources are damaged or destroyed. There has been an ongoing struggle to protect this natural treasure. It has dry spots and much of it only flows seasonally. The ground water, which feeds it from the surrounding mountains, is being sucked out with the growth of thirsty communities like Sierra Vista. Conservation measures are in place, but the influence of money, profit and politics, greed disguised as good economics, continue to whittle away at our true wealth.

There is a 40 mile long belt on the river that varies in width that is for wildlife preservation. The river is lined with huge cottonwoods.  Mesquite bosques lie beyond. I only recently found how extensive that this preservation is. I called the visitor center and was told that there was water at the bridge there. Downstream, they didn’t know. We have been in drought for two years. We will use the visitor center bridge section as a backup, in case the river is dry.

There are fewer people downstream near the bridge close to the ghost town of Fairbanks. We are heading to Fairbanks to look for flowing water in the river. We are continuing our birthday celebrations weekend, traveling from a late morning start in Gardner Canyon.

Here is that story:

https://thefreerangenaturist.org/2018/06/06/gardner-canyon-revisited-part-i/

We’re picking up where it left off.

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