Bear Canyon & Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ

Last Friday I left Phoenix around 6:15am and drove down to Tucson, Sabino Canyon area. After a two hour drive and getting all my gear ready I started the couple mile hike to the Bear Canyon trailhead. Weather was great, not too many people on the Bear Canyon trail as most folks head up Sabino Canyon. Nice view of the saguaros with some mountain peaks still white with snow in the background on the way to the trailhead. The soil was still moist with small puddles here and there from all the winter moisture we’ve been having this year. The stream was running pretty good and in the morning was a little bit cold (after about 10am and some hiking it felt great). You have to cross the stream 7-8 times on the couple miles to Seven Falls. At most crossings the water was just at or below my knees, but a few of them the water level was much higher, at mid to upper thighs. I had to hold up my camera bags to ensure the gear didn’t get wet. The hike provided spectacular views of saguaros and ocotillos with loads of green leaves, great rocks and the stream added a nice background noise for the hike. There were some wildflowers in bloom along the trail as well. Signs at the trailhead warned of mountain lions, but the wildlife I encountered were 2 deer, 8 rabbits, 2 hawks, lots of lizards and a large red/orange centipede. Water was a goldish brown color evidently occurs due to tannin from the roots/plants in the canyon area. The big payoff was a great view of seven falls with loads of water coming down from the snowmelt. The water at the falls was making a very loud roar as it tumbled down the rocks. I’ve included some photos below.

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

Bear Canyon Sabino Canyon Seven Falls, Tucson, AZ - www.gpphotos.com/Blog - Glenn Peterson Photography

  • Glenn - Thanks, yes I would imagine it looked a bit different in the middle of July. If I recall correctly there was a good amount of snow available to create a nice runoff that spring. I would recommend hiking it again in the spring sometime.

  • Tim - These are some great pictures! I went today in the middle of July and the water was hardly a trickle. I guess I’ll have to try again during the spring!

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