Friday, January 21, 2011

Ramsey Canyon

Ramsey Canyon is a narrow green gorge on the eastern slopes of the Huachuca Mountain near Sierra Vista, Arizona. Unlike all the empty arroyos and dry washes we see everywhere there is actually a babbling brook that flows down through this canyon. The other thing that stands out is how green it is. If you were somehow transported here from somewhere else and plunked down in this canyon you would never guess that it is late January. If not for the Agave and Yuccas you might not even think you were in Arizona.

The wide, .5 mile long, easy to hike trail is mostly shaded even this time of year. That's largely because the oaks here do not lose their leaves until spring. The other trees include Alligator Juniper, Pine and the Sycamores that have lost their leaves. This well maintained trail crosses the brook often and you can usually hear its peaceful sound wherever you are.

There are still remnants here from the 19th century settlers who made this canyon their home.

This chimney is all that remains of a house that was built directly over the stream.

Once you've climbed the gentle main trail there's a .5 mile extension on the Hamburg trail which takes you to a look-out at 6200 feet. This trail is steeper than anything we've seen. It's like climbing a 1/2 mile flight of stairs or a ladder without your hands as the BayfieldbunchRamseyCanyon said earlier this month. By the time we got close to the top, the last few resting benches were an absolute necessity to allow us to catch our breath. Coming back down offers more challenges with lots of loose gravel on the steep inclines. We'll have to see how our knees feel tomorrow.

The Hamburg trail at the 6200' look-out. The white spot in the sky is the Fort Huachuca aerostat, which is always tethered over Sierra Vista. Big Brother is watching, the air space near the border that is!


  1. We really liked Ramsey Canyon.
    Have you been to Fort Bowie? If not, we'll send you our day there. If you go, make sure to do the Apache Pass entrance where you hike in to the Fort. Not the one where you drive up to the parking lot. The other one is a long hike but WELL WORTH it. I can get Al to send info if you havent been.
    Another beautiful day in paradise here in AZ. ! Kelly

  2. We haven't been to Fort Bowie yet. We'd love to see your photos and appreciate the entrance advice. It's just gorgeous here and next week looks just as nice. Back in what was home it's about 4 degrees F now, and more snow's on the way.

    Best, Terry

  3. Interesting...... looks like we were both at Ramsey Canyon on the same day. Today we went hiking at Ft Bowie, taking the trail the Al mentioned. Photos etc will be posted on our blog sometime tomorrow. JoAnn