Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Guide To 10 Best Trails in Sabino Canyon

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Sabino Canyon is an outdoor enthusiast’s haven situated in southern Arizona’s Santa Catalina Mountains. Sabino Canyon boasts trails that wind through its rugged terrain, breathtaking views, varied vegetation, and wildlife. One of the best outdoor pursuits is hiking, and Sabino Canyon provides one of the best hikes in USA.
Here are the top ten routes that showcase the canyon’s natural beauty and guarantee a safe and enjoyable exploration of one of the unique places to visit in USA.

Phone Line Trail

Phone Line Trail Sabino Canyon

Image credit – reddit.com

Difficulty level – Moderate

A well-liked hiking route in Sabino Canyon is the Phone Line Trail. The trail ascends steeply above the canyon, providing you with a unique vantage and expansive vista of this remarkable location. The Phone Line trail can be completed in two different ways. You can hike the 7.6 miles round-trip or walk to the end of the route to return to the paved road below, which offers two entirely distinct experiences. Alternatively, you can ride the tram to the end and hike back up the trail, or you can do both.

Hike to Blackett’s Ridge

Difficulty level – Moderate to Difficult

One of the best shorter yet difficult hikes in Sabino and Bear Canyon is the hike on the Blackett’s Ridge Trail. In less than three hours roundtrip (4.6 miles), you will get your heart pumping and your legs burning in both the rocky ascent and descent. It will be well worth your effort as the panoramic views are perhaps some of the best in Tucson. This hike is relatively demanding as there is a lot of hiking straight up and down which can be slippery and difficult.

Hike to Seven Falls

Difficulty level: Moderate

Although Sabino Canyon is the largest of the two canyons and offers the most hikes, neighboring Bear Canyon is equally as beautiful and also delights the visitor with spectacular views and hikes. Both Sabino and Bear Canyon are part of the Sabino Canyon Recreation Area and Coronado National Forest. The most popular hike in Bear Canyon is to Seven Falls.
The trail to Seven Falls is utterly gorgeous and traverses over Sabino Creek while meandering through the low-lying canyon. There are plenty of lovely cacti along the way and it is full of beauty.

Sabino Lake Loop

Difficulty – Easy

At 2.3 miles in length, Sabino Lake Loop is an easy hike in Sabino Canyon Recreation Area. The trail starts at the Visitors Center and heads east along Bear Canyon Trail #29. The trail passes the Bajada Loop Nature Trail. There are lots of picnic tables and shelters near the dam as it is a popular place to hang out. After exploring the area near the dam, you can take the Bluff Trail #51. This is a short trail with fabulous views of Sabino Canyon. This is a fun hike that takes you through a traditional Sonoran landscape full of cacti, including a rare crested saguaro. In the spring you will find a ton of flowers in bloom.

Sabino Lake-Creek Trail-Rattlesnake Trail-Esperero Trail Loop

Difficulty: Easy

The Sabino Lake-Creek Trail-Rattlesnake Trail-Esperero Trail Loop is similar to the Sabino Lake Loop. Head north along Esperero Trail #25 until you reach the junction with Rattlesnake Trail #50. Beyond this area to the north is the Pusch Ridge Wilderness. If you have a good fitness level, you can hike to Mount Miguel.

Hike to Hutch’s Pools

Difficulty level – Moderate

As you hike behind Sabino Canyon, the trail meanders around two additional canyons until you arrive at a large open high plains desert. The grass is yellow and there are all kinds of different cactus. The cactus disappears and you can see different kinds of shrubs, trees, and flowers that you will not see below in the more populated parts of Sabino Canyon. After hiking for a bit, you discover the real surprise! The creek ends at Hutch’s Pools, a verdant oasis of green.

Sabino Dam Trail

Difficulty Level – Easy

This is one of our favourite hikes and it starts at the visitor center. The trail will cross the Bear Canyon Tramroad. When you get to the roundabout where the tram turns around, cross the bridge over the river and continue up the Sabino Dam Trail for about 0.2 miles. There is ample signage to steer you in the right direction. The best part of this hike is that the kids can get their feet wet at the river crossings and Sabino Dam. There is a lot to explore and it is quite safe.

Creek Trail

Difficulty Level – Easy

The Creek trail follows the creek for 0.5 miles before coming to the junction with the Phoneline Link trail. This is a great option for kids who are ready for a longer hike but not quite ready for the big hikes below.

Bear Canyon Trail

Difficulty Level – Moderate

Bear Canyon Trail is a 6.8-mile hike through Sabino Canyon. Along the trail, you will discover beautiful waterfalls and pools perfect for a refreshing swim. The trail offers stunning views of the surrounding cliffs and wildlife sightings are common, making it an ideal adventure for nature lovers. Hikers should be prepared for a moderately challenging hike, especially during hot weather

Esperero Trail

Difficulty Level – Moderate to Difficult

Esperero Trail is a 10.6-mile hike that takes you deep into the heart of Sabino Canyon’s wilderness. Along the way, you will encounter diverse landscapes, from rocky terrain to lush forests. The trail offers breathtaking vistas of mountains and valleys, providing a challenging yet rewarding experience for hikers of all skill levels. Plan your visit today and discover why Sabino Canyon is one of the top adventure destinations in the USA.

The Sabino Canyon Shuttle runs 45-minute trips into the canyon all day, stopping at nine stops to pick up or drop off hikers at various trailheads. Exploring the trails of Sabino Canyon promises an amazing experience for anyone seeking an escape and reconnect with nature. While you are in Arizona, do not miss the opportunity to explore the top sights in Bryce Canyon National Park.



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