Wrightson. Wrightson Wilderness range from well-used pathways to primitive routes. In February of 2020, I hiked the Old Baldy Trail to the summit. The Santa Rita Lodge is the gateway to Madera Canyon, nestled on the northwestern side of the Santa Rita Mountains. Wrightson is the highest point in the Santa Rita Mountains. Madera Canyon has over fifty miles of trails to hike. There are two trails to the summit from Madera Canyon, the Old Baldy Trail and the Super Trail. Mount Wrightson is the highest point in the Tucson region at 9,456 ft. Named after William Wrighston, a miner and entrepreneur who was killed in 1865 by Apaches during the battle of Fort Buchanan. Trails within the Mt. Mt. The trail begins at the end of Madera Canyon. Wrightson Wilderness Area over the past week was killed over the weekend by an officer from the U.S. Highlights. A few of the most popular access points are located within the Madera Canyon Recreation Area, where roads and parking areas are paved. Surely that's enough of a reason to hike it but the real draw is the Madrean Sky Island environment which is exceptionally unique. Even if you're not a bird-watcher, you have to appreciate the unique nature of this place. Mount Wrightson Wilderness: This wilderness of 25,260 acres includes most of the high peaks and ridges of the mountain range. Trails in the Wilderness crisscross forests, canyons and ridgetops, accessing panoramic views and cool, shaded glades The Nature trail starts at the Santa Rita Lodge and makes its way on the west side of Madera Creek and continues for 2.7 miles to the Mount Wrightson picnic area. The Mount Wrightson hike is intermediate but forgiving. Directions to Mount Wrightson and Hiking Basics. The former is steeper and shorter, while the latter seems to pretty much circumnavigate most of Mt. And it looks even farther than that — at 9,453 feet, Mount Wrightson, also known as Old Baldy, is the highest point in the Santa Rita Mountains. Technically the shortest ascent to the summit is via the Garden Canyon Trail #143. This trail can best be described as a "nice stroll" and very well maintained with a bit of elevation gain through a … Make sure to go in a group of 3 or more, read the trail head for list of essential equipment, and have a great time! However, with its four-wheel-drive access, the Madera Canyon options are more appealing coming from Tucson. A climb to the summit of Mount Wrightson is one of the more popular hikes in this wilderness, but it is only for the very fit. It's only 5.4 miles away on foot, but it's way up there. Water is a must, I took 1.5 gallons in my pack. While Mount Lemmon seems to get all of Tucson's fame and glory, lesser known Mount Wrightson is perhaps a more fun and scenic climb thanks to the lack of development on its summit and heavily shaded trail to shield you you from the Arizona heat. I’d encourage anybody try it. 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