A few days before a scheduled hike to Brown Mountain, down in the Tucson Mountain range, SaddleBrooke hiking guide Kathryn Madore checked the weather forecast for Jan. 23. Leery of the warnings, she decided to alert her hiking group that rain might cancel their venture. As the hours progressed, the prospects for a safe and enjoyable trip seemed to wane. Undaunted, Madore pulled out her Plan B: Linda Vista Trail.
Would her hikers be willing? Granted, Linda Vista is not as long a hike as promised, but the group would not have to risk a long drive only to find adverse conditions. And with all the rain and melting snow, a treacherous wash crossing would not be an issue here. But still, reports of the temperatures at departure time were frigid. So, she pushed the starting time back to 1 p.m.—a rare time slot for SaddleBrookian hikes, which mostly leave near the crack of dawn.
Happily, her hikers all responded with a yes! And, thus, a group of seven hikers, including Madore, enjoyed a trek up the slopes and down on a chilly early afternoon. This trail, which reaches up behind populated areas of Oro Valley into the wilderness, provides interesting perspectives of familiar places from a totally different point of view.
Among those hiking were several people new to SaddleBrooke or just visiting to “try us out.” Kathleen Bell and Jim Thompson, both new SaddleBrooke residents, enjoyed their outing on this close-by trail. Sam Donatelli is spending her first season in SaddleBrooke, and she learned more about the area from the veteran club hikers. Patti Rubel, Lynda Green, and Don Taylor completed the group.
When planning hikes for the club schedule, Madore has favorite places, like Brown Mountain, that she enjoys sharing with others. But in a pinch, she states, “Linda Vista Trail is my backup plan.”