I have mixed emotions when it comes to buying new boots. On the one hand, I love new gear. On the other, I never know how they’ll do on the trail. A pair of good, well fit boots are quickly forgotten on the trail, but no other piece of gear has the ability to absolutely ruin a trip and make life miserable like the wrong pair of boots.
I’ve been spending a lot of time in the Rincon’s lately wandering around the foothills and valleys of the Rincon Mountain Wilderness. The Wilderness surrounds Sahuaro on three sides. The terrain ranges from rolling scrub desert to shear walled riparian canyons, and despite its proximity to Tucson access to much of the Wilderness is limited. If you don’t want to compete with the crowds on Mount Lemmon, the Ricons are a great alternative.
I’m one of those guys that is always tweaking his gear. One of the items that caught my eye was the Vargo Triad Titanium Alcohol Stove. My homemade Super Cat has replaced my MSR gas stoves on my solo hikes, and I’ve been wanting to check out some of the manufactured stoves to see if they are better than my DIY project.
Here is a quick rundown of gear to consider if you take your dog hiking.
I haven’t talked about food for a while so I thought I’d review a couple of meals from my latest hike. Last summer I went on a drying and baking binge and I’ve had an assortment of foods hanging around in the freezer that hadn’t been sampled for quite a while. As I was packing […]
With our base camp established somewhere over 8,000′ and a well earned night’s sleep behind us, it was time to get down to the business of training. The next several days were spent on alpine travel and rescue, avalanche awareness, climbing, and some good old winter hiking.
In May 2007, my squadron sent a team to Montana for cold weather and high altitude training in preparation for an Afghanistan deployment. This was truly one of the highlights of my Air Force career.
Here is a link to the story of Ross Mason, a hiker that got “lost” in the Gila Wilderness in New Mexico earlier this month. Ross was a little unprepared for the trip, had a little bad luck, and took one wrong turn on the trail. Like most hikers unfamiliar with the desert, he underestimated […]
One of the great things about Tucson is that there are some fantastic places to walk. During the summer, the washes (dried stream beds for those of you from wet places) are pretty unbearable but now that the weather has cooled they are a great place to put in some miles. They are easy walks […]
We’ve had a couple of good, strong rains over the past week in northeast Tucson and I’ve seen an increase in search hits for water levels in Reddington, so I thought I’d give a quick update on conditions in the Tanque Verde valley.
What a wonderful soreness a strenuous hike brings! I love it but have a sneaking suspicion that Saja doesn’t share my feeling! She’s exhausted after our weekend romp and slept most of the day today. I can’t blame her. Climbing out of the canyon was the toughest mile I’ve hiked in a long time. But […]
Reddington Pass is one of Tucson’s most accessible recreation areas and provides for a wide range of activities from hiking to shooting to four-wheeling. Most of the pass falls within Coronado National Forest’s jurisdiction but there is also a fair amount of private land. As always respect the rights of the private land owners, leave […]
It was hot today; well over 100F with little cloud cover. I spend a lot of time outside under the Arizona sun, but today was a bit much even for me. The heat saps your energy. Your heart feels like it’s racing. Your throat is parched again two breaths after a drink. Every movement becomes […]
The worst thing about hiking in the desert is that water weighs 8.3 pound per gallon. Somehow I managed to take a 60 pound pack on a one night trip. To make matters worse, Saja and I ended up going cross country in some rugged terrain when the Davis Spring Trail vanished. It was time for the old map and compass…
OK, so you think it would be a good idea to take your dog hiking on Tucson’s trails, so you just take him with you next time. No big deal. Right? Maybe not a good idea. Here are three big things that you have to consider before you take your dog hiking: Conditioning Suitability (Breed, Temperament, […]
Molino Canyon is one of my favorite Tucson escapes when time is limited. The trailhead is just past the fee station on Catalina Highway, about 5 miles up the mountain. You can’t miss the parking lot. Once you arrive, you have three trails to choose from. The first is off to the west and […]
So what do you carry for a day on the trail? I’m a bit of a boy scout so I tend to overpack and prepare for the worst. My basic philosophy is to assume that every day hike will turn into an overnight. Here is my basic kit (you can get most of this stuff […]
I’ve been looking for a dog friendly, backpacking trail into the Rincons, which is a bit of a challenge since dogs aren’t permitted in Saguaro National Monument. Tanque Verde Valley has some good camping areas but it gets too much traffic. After checking out the Rincon Mountains map I picked up from the Visitor Center […]
Most of my running is done on the 49er’s golf course and washes. These are peaceful runs with plenty of trees and soft grass (Saja’s Note: and plenty of cool things to smell!), but they aren’t especially challenging unless you are into sprinting. Every runner needs a change of pace once in a while, and […]
I must confess that I don’t hike Mt Lemmon very much, which is criminal when you get right down to it since I only live a couple miles away, but as the summer heat hits Tucson the cool forest heights are pretty darn appealing. So last Sunday, I threw Saja and the kids in the […]