Saturday, December 27, 2014

Saguaro National Park East Three Tank Trail November 15, 2014

                    Saguaros with the Catalina Mountains in the background

The Douglas Spring trail head is located at the end of Speedway BLVD in East Tucson. Many trails radiate out from this trail head including the longer Douglas Spring Trail which takes hikers to Manning Camp. The other trails are located in the Cactus Forest. I love the Cactus Forest because it is possible to create hikes of various lengths from the many different trails.

On November 15 my cousin and I arrived at the trail head mid-morning to hike the Three-tank Trail and return to the car via the Wildhorse and Garwood Trails. This loop is approximately eight miles long with 1500 feet of vertical change. Views of Tucson and the Catalina Mountains become extraordinary on the Three-Tank Trail. The ecosystem also changes on the Douglas Spring Trail with Sonoran Desert vegetation ie. Saguaro Cacti, Palo verde, Ocotillo becoming more of a grassy mixture. While on the hike, my cousin and I encountered two individuals on horseback and a riding group from Tanque Verde Ranch.

                            Vegetation in the Sonoran Desert

                               Horseback on the Three-tank Trail

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