Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Lovely Water in the Desert: Seven Falls Trail

Yesterday we joined forces with John and Pam and hiked the Seven Falls Trail. The link says the trail is 7.8 miles round trip but we ended up hiking about 9.5 miles. It's funny how almost every hike we've done in the Tucson area has turned out to be longer than the posted mileage...don't believe everything you read!

The trail begins at the Sabino Canyon visitor center in NE Tucson. It heads up Bear Canyon, along lovely Bear Creek. There are seven stream crossings, and the trail ends at the seven falls cascading down the mountainside. The creek is seasonal, only running during winter and monsoon season. At this time of year the riparian vegetation is brown, making for some rather monochromatic photos!

This sunny day reached about 73 degrees, the creek added a refreshingly cool feel to the air and the canyon supported a slight breeze, making the uphill portions of the hike more pleasant. We heard that folks even hike this trail during the summers heat, because swimming in the pools make the return hike bearable.

Of course there must be saguaro pics!
Pam and I were excited to see this young crested saguaro early on in the hike.

Not long on the trail we came to the creek and followed it the rest of the way.
So refreshing to be near running water in the middle of the desert!
Seven stream crossings made this hike exciting!
Hans and John lead the way...

John and Pam looking good along the creek!
About 3/4 of the way up the canyon the trail headed up the canyon wall,
 allowing us a spectacular view of the seven falls once we were opposite them.
All those specs are people...this is a popular hike!

From the base of the upper falls looking back at the precipice where folks gather to admire the falls;
the final falls are below this landing.
All of the rocks on the precipice were smoothed by water.
We can only imagine how spectacular this place must be when the water is flowing at full force!
Hans lounging in one of the dry chutes.

Looking back down the canyon...Tucson is visible in the distance.

Pam had heard there was a crested saguaro near the visitor center,
so after 9.5 miles we still needed to see  it for ourselves...and it did not disappoint!
This gorgeous specimen is located on the nature walk behind the visitor center.
Another fun hike with our RVing buddies John and Pam. We'll try to have one more outing with them before they leave in a week. Love, love, love how this lifestyle leads to chance meetings and good times with folks we'll hopefully meet up with again some other time, some other place down the road.


  1. Now that is our kind of hike! Flowing water, waterfalls, a good length...We'll put it on the bucket list.

    Thank you for the great commentary and photos. It looks so inviting.

  2. It was a great day. Didn't sleep well again. Our blog is delayed because Word Press seems to be having issues.

    1. Darn, I hope you get a good night sleep tonight.

      We're having a good, relaxing recovery day today!

  3. Beautiful! Since we did not do this hike, your pictures makes me feel I was there and enjoying with you.

    1. The nice part about missing some areas is you have a reason to return some day!

  4. I was searching Rving blogs ,because me and my husband are thinking about full time Rving, when I came across yours. We live in Tucson and when looking at all your great adventures you are having right here it inspires me to start my adventure in my own back yard. I hope you continue to have a great time in Tucson and the weather holds out for you too.


    1. Thanks for reading! We are really enjoying ourselves and find we are settling in to the lifestyle more with each passing month. You have a great backyard to explore and whet your appetite for your future travels!

      Looking forward to cool hiking weather this weekend!


  5. That's a great hike and post. It's been 25 years since I hiked up to seven falls... need a redo once we get over to CSP. Now in Gilbert Ray... another great spot, but not a drop of water flowing around here.
    We just left Madera Canyon... LOTS of trails and birds and wildlife there... and a creek!
    Box Canyon Mark

    1. Nope, no water there. We've ridden through GR a couple of times on our bikes, nice campground. The Brown Mtn Trail makes for a nice loop with good views.

      We'll be heading to Amado/Tubac area in March and intend to see Madera Canyon then...looking forward to it!

      Looks like there's a dusting of snow on top of the SNP/TMP mountains out your door this morning!