Guthrie Mountain

Guthrie Mountain is a somewhat shorter hike that starts at the trailhead just down the road from the General Hitchcock Campground.  You can also start from the campground itself but only if you're occupying a campsite there.  The trail heads up the final stretch of Bear Canyon and then splits off at Bear Saddle to follow the ridge crest to the summit on an unmarked but easy to follow trail.

November 22, 2009
Kathryn and I did this hike since we were looking for something shorter and I hadn't done any of the hikes on the northeast side of the Catalinas yet.  The start of the hike was pretty cold in the canyon bottom but heated up quickly as we climbed up the slopes.


Looking back at the head of Bear Canyon from the saddle with the Santa Ritas on the horizon.


A little farther up the ridge the trail crosses the top of the Burro Creek canyon which is filled with some large Ponderosa Pine and drains off the other side of the Catalinas into the San Pedro River.  Guthrie Mountain is the peak on the left and Mica Mountain of the Rincons is in the distance across Redington Pass.
 

Looking across the north side of Guthrie Mountain and over the San Pedro Valley to the Galiuros and the Pinalenos beyond. 


View of the northeast side of the Catalinas from the top of the steep rocky section of trail near the summit.  Mt Bigelow and its radio towers are in the upper left and in the distance in the center is Oracle Ridge.  The rocks and branchs on the lower left are still painted red by fire retardant after several years as are many other parts along the ridge.  The exposed ridge top is coverd in pinyon pine and Alligator Juniper while the shady recess on the right is filled with Douglas-fir and Southwestern White Pine.  Filling the gap between and blending into those two environments are Ponderosa and Chihuahua Pine.


The south face of the ridge extending east from Guthrie Mountain which seems to have been lightly burned by the Bullock Fire of 2002 or a backburn.  The Mt Graham telescope is visible as a tiny white dot at the top of the Pinalenos in the linked larger photo.


Looking back across the ridge separating Burro Creek from Bear Canyon and roughly along the stream course of the latter, including Thimble Peak which it flows below just before cascading down Seven Falls.  Tucson fills the valley beyond that and Kitt Peak is on the left horizon with the Tucson Mountains inbetween.  The highway can be seen climbing out of Bear Canyon up to Windy Point and then continuing along the top of the ridge on its way to Summerhaven.  The ridge face is bare due to either the Bullock or Aspen Fire.  Visible over this ridge in the upper right is the very top of Window Peak and to its right a much larger portion of Cathedral Peak, both a part of Pusch Ridge.


Final view of the forest glowing in the sun as we approach the campground.