I had intended to send you this email after I did the hike last summer (August), but I put it off until now. I am going to be doing the Turkey Creek to Manning Camp hike next week, so I figured now was a good enough time to send you my impressions of the hike.Many years ago when I hiked from Sabino Canyon up to the Wilderness of Rocks during a drought (1996?) there was no potable water at all in the Wilderness of Rocks. Lemmon Creek had some pools of water, but the water was so salty it was undrinkable.
The section "Romero Canyon Trail, FS #8 (old trail camp to Romero Pass)" is heavily overgrown near the end. There were times when the trail basically disappeared in the vegetation below your feet. I managed to get up to the top of the pass, but it was very difficult with all of the vegetation growing ON the trail.
When I did this hike, there were very few water sources. I imagine this is why you listed it as a Spring/Fall hike only. This was particularly problematic in the section: "Mt. Lemmon Trail, FS #5 (Romero Pass to Wilderness of Rocks Trail)". At one point I was down to less than a half liter after carrying 5 full liters from the campsite in Romero Canyon.
Overall, your description of the hike was spot-on. I did this hike over three days, making it a little less strenuous than a full day-hike. I was surprised my first morning by a hiker that said she hiked all the way past the campsite every morning from the Romero Pools trail. The next instance I met anyone on the hike was in the Wilderness of Rocks area. As I made my way up the mountain I passed several more people, but the solitude along the Romero Canyon trail was priceless. I enjoyed this hike, although I don't think I will do it again in the Summer. If I do manage to build up the nerve to do this hike again, I will probably go downhill next time as well.
Have you received any updates on the Turkey Creek to Manning Camp hike? Any additional information would be appreciated. Thanks for your work on the website, I and many other hikers appreciate it.
Friday, July 9, 2010
Hiker update on Mt. Lemmon from Catalina State Park
Today a John emailed me this update on the Mt. Lemmon to Catalina State Park hike: