Today’s hike started at the Wagner Trailhead. We had a larger group today consisting of me, Ranger Amy, Bob, Linda, Janet, Nancy, Sue, and Sharon.
Our goal for the day was to get out to the Marcus Landslide Trail in the McDowell Sonoran Preserve. We decided to shorten the initial part of the hike as much as possible by cutting through the campground. Even so, we ended up hiking around eleven miles. Our route took us up Bluff to Pemberton to Rock Knob. From there we were able to get on the Marcus Landslide Trail. We followed it a bit past the intersection with the Boulder Trail. It’s a nice trail; I suspect that it eventually connects with the Windmill Trail at some point. I’ll have to do some further exploration to find out…
This photo was taken early on while we were still on the Granite Trail. From left to right are Bob, Sue, Sharon, Janet, Amy, Nancy, and Linda.
Part way up the Bluff Trail, we saw this small bird sitting atop a large granite boulder.
Below is a view of Tom’s Thumb. There are some chain fruit cholla in the foreground. Part of the Sven Slab climbing area can be seen to the left. I once climbed that detached flake (a little ways left of center) with Craig Thornley back in the late 80s. We climbed Tom’s Thumb too.
Another view of Tom’s Thumb and the Sven Slab climbing area. Joe and I have climbed that face at the far left in the picture.
A patch of Teddy Bear Cholla. I think we’re looking back at part of Rock Knob in this photo.
This was one of the interesting rock formations along the Marcus Landslide Trail.
Another interesting looking rock. I posted another view of this rock yesterday.
This is a view from the Marcus Landslide Trail just prior to turning around. Note that the trail keeps going and is visible in the lower right of the photo.
On our way back, we saw three equestrians on the Marcus Landslide Trail.
Here, Ranger Amy is telling us about the sound that a small type of squirrel was making as were hiking back.
Hiking along the Pemberton:
Nancy and Amy approaching the intersection of Pemberton and Bluff:
A very healthy saguaro on the Bluff Trail:
Ocotillo in the park had turned green from the recent rains, but the leaves are now drying out and turning yellow. This one caught my eye as we were hiking back along the Bluff Trail. Weaver’s Needle is visible along the skyline to the left.
We encountered three more equestrians while hiking down the Bluff Trail.