I started from the trail head near Gordon Hirobayashi. The first mile was a series of uphill switchbacks that gets you warmed up quickly. Right at the start of the second mile was a great little stream running through a rocky area that my dog just went crazy for. The second and third mile were a mix of pleasant uphill and downhill sections that slowly change from desert terrain (rocks, manzanita, low shrubs) to pine forest. It was great today because there were large patches of snow in the higher altitude portions of the trail. Again, my dog was pretty pumped about that. I turned around at the 3 mile mark (GPS) and hiked back. The return trip was slightly faster as it was mostly downhill. Everyone raves about Phoneline Trail at Sabino Canyon for the views, especially for out-of-town folks, but I ran that trail yesterday and really enjoyed this trail much more.
A prime mountain bike trail. Starts with a 15 minute hike-a-bike and descends into a pine/oak/madrone forest. This section has a stream right after storms. Then it's another stair climb and a ridge to the hoodoos where many take a break for the views. More ridge and a descent to Prison Camp. Beautiful, fun trail, tech. Most will ride on to Molino Basin and some continue on harder Milagrosa Trail.
Great little trail, a good mix of up and down! Really enjoyed how the trail ran through both the desert and the pines. Absolutely beautiful scenery starting out, especially since the monsoon gave plenty of rain and the Catalinas were covered in green!
The trail was not too hard on the feet, since it is also used as a mountain biking trail.
While the trail is not necessarily hard, it does get quite steep on the way back once you reach the finish.
Ana J. on Bug Springs Trail
Gorgeous hike. Nice climb along colossal rock formations followed by a drop into Pines and a creek to cool off the feet.
Went up on the fourth thinking we would be out for hours, we went about 3/4 the way and then turned around all in all it took about 2 1/2 to 3 hours.
I loved that you start in the desert and end in the forest. It is quite a challenging trail, really gets the heart rate pumping and legs burning.
I will definitely be back to finish the trail,
This is a difficult hike. The last two miles going in are downhill over a lot of loose rock and boulders. Coming back up is difficult. There is a reservoir at the end of the trail but when you get there you will notice the smell of a sewer. It appears to collect all of the septic run off from Mt. Lemmon. Don't believe there will be usable water at the reservoir. I wouldn't feel safe even cooling my feet in the water.
This was a very cool hike. We took two dogs with us, one a chihuahua, so the trail isn't as difficult as it's rated. We did encounter a few people on the trail, some hiking and some biking. There was still some snow at the higher elevations, but not nearly enough to require boots or any winter gear. Towards the end of the trail we started to wonder whether we were still on the correct trail, but at the high point there were markers other hikers had left and a row of dead wood blocking a fork in the trail so we knew we were headed the right direction. This was an awesome hike with some nice views, I'd recommend it for anyone that can walk.
One of the most fun mountain bike trails in Tucson. Best ridden by shuttling, but can also be ridden as an out and back or up the road. This trail is not for beginners as there are several technical sections and a significant amount of exposure.