Hiking the “Super Trail” in Coronado National Forest, Arizona – Emmalee Mauldin, Hiking the “Super Trail” in Coronado National Forest, Arizona, Take A Walk! Overall, this is a difficult but doable for most experienced hikers in the winter. Recreational Activities. Required fields are marked *, Hi! 0 comments . Old Baldy Trail, which begins in Madera Canyon, had reopened just before the Saturday incident after being closed by the Coronado Forest on Oct. 7, following three previous bear encounters, Hart said. A wonderful curiosity of hiking the Sky Islands is the mixture of high alpine forests with low desert flora. TUCSON - It has been a while since we've gone Hittin' the trails in Madera Canyon at the Old Baldy Trail! Tucson, AZ, USA 85701 (520) 388-8300 (520) 388-8304 TTY. Gets steeper as you get higher! Both of these trails lead to the 9,543-foot summit of Mt. The trails form a figure eight making it possible to put together a number of different loops using different portions of each. There is a fee of $5 to park in the lot since you are visiting a National Forest. (I currently live in Houston, which is basically at sea level, so the 5,000 elevation gain hit me hard.). It’s a favorite hiking spot for my family and birders. Old Baldy Trail and the Super Trailheads are on the left and righthand side of the parking lot. Just like the hike to the “Carrie National Trail #78,” which I’ve previously written about, once you park, there is about a one-mile hike to the actual trailhead. Wrightson, the highest peak in the Santa Ritas. Old Baldy Trail, Santa Rita mountains, Tucson AZ. The trails form a figure eight making it possible to put together a number of different loops using different portions of each. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. Old Baldy is the shortest and steepest, while the Super Trail is longer but has a more moderate gradient, but both of these trails lead to the 9,543-foot summit of Mt. Large pine cones litter the ground trailside. The Old Baldy Trail described here is one of two primary routes to the top, the other being the Super Trail. You’ll then come to the Mount Wrightson Wilderness sign and at that point you are official! Most notable is the Old Baldy Trail that leads up to Mount Wrightson. Simply plug in directions for "Old Baldy Trailhead" (click link for Google Maps. Mount Wrightson via Old Baldy Trail is a 11.4 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Green Valley, Arizona that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. Madera Canyon is accessible, a reasonable place to go, and where the Old Baldy trail starts. To get to the hike, you have to drive to the topmost parking lot in Coronado National Forest. Old Baldy is located in Coronado National Forest, about 40 miles south of Tucson in southern Arizona. However that honor belongs to the Santa Rita's Mount Wrightson. And it looks even farther than that — at 9,453 feet, Mount Wrightson, also known as Old Baldy, is the highest point in the Santa Rita Mountains. Hiking trip report, map, and photos for Mount Wrightson via Old Baldy Trail, located in Coronado National Forest, Arizona. The trail wraps around the Eastern and Southern tip of the summit creating and incredible panorama. Old Baldy is the shortest and steepest, while the Super Trail is longer but has a more moderate gradient, but both of these trails lead to the 9,543-foot summit of Mt. Your email address will not be published. Met some really nice people. Yes, the actual name of this trail is called “Old Baldy.” It’s because It leads to a saddle that is mostly “bald” (fewer trees), hence the name. Old Baldy is located in Coronado National Forest, about 40 miles south of Tucson in southern Arizona. I turned left there for the Old Baldy Trail. This is also when the switchbacks begin. In February of 2020, I hiked the Old Baldy Trail to the summit. I’d like to go soon, wondering how cold it is at the top, or actually, the whole way up, too. You can easily make the hike in a day trip from Tucson but be prepared for a full day (5-6 hours hike plus 1 1/2 to 2 hours drive roundtrip). These trails meet near Josephine Saddle to create a figure 8 on the mountain and can be combined to make a more interesting loop hike. Also, please make sure that you bring enough water on your hike! The remarkable preservation of the region was evident from here to the summit. Southern Arizona and Tucson ... Up to Josephine Saddle, then to the top via Super Trail and back to Josephine Saddle via Baldy Trail. Old Baldy/ Super Trail loop. The Pursuit of Life is an outdoor adventure blog that’s dedicated towards providing guides on a variety of outdoor activities and wild places in the United States and Canada. I hiked this in the winter so, no surprise, there was a lot of snow past Josephine Saddle. As we went up the Old Baldy trail, he shared several stories about the mountain and some of his experiences on it. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. I despise switchbacks, and there are quite a few on this trail. Its a popular place for hiking, camping and bird watching so its best to get there early, any time of year. It is south of Tucson accessible from the west side of the Santa Rita Mountains from Continental south of Green Valley. 57 Years ago tragedy strikes near Tucson on Mt. Of the two trails, the Old Baldy Trail is more popular because it is the shortest route to the summit. Activities that are covered in this blog include hiking, mountain biking, climbing, kayaking, mountaineering, thru-hiking, caving, trail running, trekking, canoeing, ice climbing and general exploring. From the trailhead, I followed signs for Old Baldy trail which heads off to the right from the parking area. I currently live in Jacksonville, Florida and work at the aerospace company Redwire Space as a communications specialist and social media manager. This final section was short but strenuous given the altitude. The summit itself is broad and flat. This is a blog for people of all levels and experience and is not limited to any state, province or sport. I essentially followed the signs that marked the Old Baldy Trail and/or Mount Wrightson summit. I have been doing a lot of hiking to swimming holes and waterfalls. Wrightson in the past week or so? I typically bring two water bottles, but you might need more. This is a 10.2 mile out-and-back hike with 4200 cumulative feet of elevation gain that takes about 5-7 hours to complete. Home: Recreational Activities: Trails: Old Baldy : view all sites by. Just a girl interested in science, nature, and writing about my adventures. I definitely slipped once and scrapped by elbows and hands. I would recommend wearing sneakers or hiking boots with good tread. Mount Wrightson has two trails to summit the highest peak in southern Arizona: the Old Baldy trail and the Super trail. With each 100 feet of climbing, I felt like I experienced an entirely new environment. This part is challenging and when I hiked it, I needed to stop 2 or 3 times to drink water and catch my breath. This challenging and enormously popular 10-mile trek (round trip) leads to the 9,453-foot summit of Mount Wrightson, and climbs more than 4,000 vertical feet and tops out on one of … The Super Trail and Old Baldy continue together for less than a quarter-mile. Many hikers opt for the shorter, steeper Baldy trail, and some combine both in a figure-eight loop that crosses at Josephine Saddle. The hike I did was the Old Baldy Trail, the most popular and shortest route up the mountain. Log in or sign up to leave a comment Log In Sign Up. At the saddle, five trails intersect but there's a number of signs making the way to the summit evident. After scrambling over rocks, ... towards the picnic area on the Old Baldy trail for .3 miles. Continue straight on the Vault Mine trail instead. best. Fun, but I have a big Grand Canyon trip coming up in a little over a month. Although the trail was steep for the next 2.1 miles to Josephine Saddle, there were endless views of Mount Wrightson's summit and the desert below. Innumerable trails permeate the Santa Rita Mountains and there are perhaps dozens of other way to reach the summit. In the ruins of some previous structure, presumably a fire tower, there's an ammunition canister and summit register. Old Baldy Trail #372 & Super Trail #134 Loop. And you’re done! However, I made it back before sunset. Almost immediately after that junction, I encountered the wilderness boundary. The trails form a figure eight making it possible to put together a number of different loops using different portions of each. It's only 5.4 miles away on foot, but it's way up there. Take head. You can take the long “Super Trail” back to the parking lot (however, the Super Trail is quite long and mostly sunny). La Noue (13 years old), who had lost their lives on November 15, 1958. This junction intercepts six paths providing reason to return. Learn how your comment data is processed. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. The first half of the trail is sunny, but majority of the trail is shaded, so sunglasses or a hat should be fine, and it’s up to you whether or not you want to wear sunscreen. ’ m not out hiking, writing, photography, gardening, and combine. 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