The Giant Saguaro is the universal symbol of the American West. These majestic plants are only found in a small portion of the United States. Saguaro National Park protects some of the most impressive forests of these sub-tropical giants.
Saguraro National Park is one of 58 National Parks in the USA. It is comprised of two districts. The Rincon Mountain District is located to the east of Tucson Arizona and the Tucson Mountain District is located to the west of Tucson.
Once in the park the first stop is the Red Hills Visitor Center. There park staff can provide you with detailed information on the trails in the park, especially which ones are best when a time constraint is factored in. The visitor center also offered exhibits of wilderness artifacts, as well as a comprehensive book store and gift shop. Pick up a free copy of "The Saguaro Sentinel", a newsletter that contains a lot of historical information concerning the park as well as some practical information for hikers. Remember, firearms are permitted in the park as per Arizona state law, but are not permitted in the visitor center or in administrative offices.
This route follows the Sendero Esperanza trail until the Hugh Norris trail, where you head east to the summit of Wasson Peak (4687ft / 1428m). The total climb from the trailhead is about 1500 ft (450m), but the climb is very gradual on a trail that is relatively wide and unimpeded by obstacles. The final climb is over many long winding switchbacks, which lessen the severity of the ascend. At the peak, Tucson can be seen in the horizon as well as the outline of the Santa Catalina and Tucson Mountain ranges.
As seen from the photos, the scenery is very impressive and certainly unique, which makes for a very pleasant hike.