Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Mount Lemmon

The Mount Lemmon Highway—Arizona Forest Highway 39, also known as the Catalina Highway, General Hitchcock Highway, and Sky Island Byway—is one of the premiere driving roads in the Southwest. Climbing over 6000 feet, it starts in Sonoran desert and ends in fir-and-aspen forest; the U.S. Forest Service bills it as "Mexico to Canada in 27 miles".

This mountain range was named by Fr. Eusebio Kino, an Italian Jesuit who made this area his mission, after St. Catherine of Alexandria; over time, the name "Santa Catarina" morphed into the present "Santa Catalina". Mount Lemmon itself is named for Sarah Lemmon, a botanist who climbed the mountain in 1881.

Like Sarah Lemmon, we did some of our exploration by "vehicle" (mule for her, Subaru for us) and some on foot.

[Great plains toad (I think) at Molino Canyon]

[Vista from Windy Point]

[Pinnacle at Windy Point]

[Osprey carrying trout at Rose Canyon Lake]


[Cherry blossoms at Rose Canyon Lake]

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