Sabino Canyon In Northeast Tucson
Tips On Visiting Sabino Canyon
Sabino Canyon is must see in Tucson. There are dozens of trails with varied levels of difficulty. What ever trail you choose to trek, be sure to bring water and sun screen.
Sabino Canyon is a large canyon in the Santa Catalina Mountains in the Northeast area of Tucson. Sabino Canyon is a great recreation spot for both residents and visitors to Tucson, Arizona. Sabino Canyon is a scenic area for walks, hiking or taking a comfortable tram to see.
Sabino Canyon was created in the Santa Catalina Mountains over 12 million years ago. It is believed plant life first appeared between 6,000 and 8,000 years ago. The first inhabitants of Sabino Canyon were the Hohokam people during that period as well.
In 1887, a massive earthquake centered in northern Mexico dislodged many of the boulders lining the canyon walls. That created many interesting rock formations and water pools and flowing creeks.
The U.S. Forest Service began administering Sabino Canyon in 1905. With the Great Depression of the 1930’s, the Works Progress Administration (WPA) and Emergency Relief Administration (ERA) built Sabino Dam and nine bridges over Sabino Creek. Plans were to build a road from Sabino Canyon to the top of Mount Lemmon. The road was started and runs about 4.5 miles into the canyon. However, the steep terrain at the end of the canyon proved impossible to deal with. The road to Mount Lemmon was never completed.
The entrance to the Sabino Canyon Recreation area is at the northeast corner of Sunrise Blvd and Sabino Canyon Road. The spectacular mountains, deep canyons, plants and animals make this a very unique place. Over a million visitors a year come to the Sabino Canyon Recreation Area.
Sabino Canyon Shuttle routes allow access to both Sabino and Bear Canyons. The shuttle service allows riders to get off wherever they choose. Visitors can bird watch, picnic, or just take in the soothing pools and cascades that grace Sabino Creek. For the less adventurous, nature trail at the visitor center offers plenty of wildlife and trail side information.
For the hikers, there are miles of trails that roam throughout the area and lead far into the Santa Catalina back country.
The hikes through Sabino Canyon and Bear Canyon are breath taking and beautiful! And yes, you may be breathing hard as well. The trails provide a way to see and appreciate the natural water springs and waterfalls of the Tucson desert. If you are planning to visit the Canyon, get there early. The parking lot is small and fills quickly.
The hiking trails vary from easy to “why am I here” tough. There are paved roads and restrooms are frequent. For 3 dollars the tram will take you through the entire Sabino Canyon. Trams depart every half hour. The visitor center has free maps of all the hiking trails. Hiking Bear Canyon and Sabino Canyon is a good workout. The hiking trails are about 8 mile for the round trip.
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