Thursday, December 9, 2010

Madera Canyon

The last stop on my S. Arizona tour was Madera Canyon in the Santa Rita Mountains south of Tucson. I took a 6.2 mile loop near Mt. Wrightson. It was a fairly easy trail that went up a bunch of switchbacks to Josephine Saddle and then back down--but what a view! It was a nice quiet hike for the most part too. I saw Mexican Jays, Bridled Titmice, a Hermit Thrush, Woodpeckers, a Canyon Wren, and a Ruby Crowed Kinglet up close and personal. Kinglets are one of my favorites because they are so tiny, fast, and drably colored, except when they flash their crowns—which is exactly what this guy did. I also love their cute song, but probably won’t hear that until spring. The photo in the upper left is where I had lunch by a small waterfall at the very beginning of the hike. The rest of the photos are views from the trail--you can see the sun began to set behind the canyon walls for the last photo on the way back down. 

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