Hike #36 – Highway 83 South 21 miles

This hike was completed on November 21st 2017 and started at Sahuarita Road Trailhead, just south of Tucson and Highway 83 off of the Interstate 10. The hike was a push into the northern edge of Santa Rita mountains and was relatively flat for the first 3 miles turning hilly with a couple good climbs toward the turn around at mile 10. The trail itself shadowing highway 83 on the west, traveling past many hilltop houses and ranches. Up elevation on the out and downhill on the way back, the hike was categorized as easy, only the total distance of 21 miles making it much of any challenge. Once clearing the one of the only true climbs at about mile 15, the remaining miles melted away quickly. The day was a perfect hiking weather, cool in the lower 60’s and overcast throughout the entire hike. Not much excitement on this hike, just putting in the miles and enjoying a nice easy trail with great hiking weather. This entire Tucson area, north of south of the I10, really should be hiked in cooler weather, the thought of being out in this mainly treeless desert section in the summer heat, is not an idea of great logic…..

One thing to note was that on this hike my Zpack’s Nemo pack was still giving me intense neck shoulder pain past mile 15. Once I returned home, I was committed to purchase another pack. Holding off for a couple days I found an ingenuously cheap and effective option that I would like to share with all those with frameless packs. A cardboard “stay”…. Yep, I just made a cardboard liner against the inside back part of the pack and in subsequent hikes, it eliminated the neck pain entirely. Such a silly simple idea… I am seriously thinking of cutting up all those old Amazon boxes in my garage and starting an online store selling them to frameless pack owners… 🙂


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