I drove about an hour to the Loma Alta trail head on the western side of Saguaro East NP and at the base of the Rincons. I was headed to the Quilter's Trail but first had to hike 2.2 miles on the LA Trail.
The trail is actually a fairly wide dirt road and mostly flat to slightly rolling. I wanted to get in a longer hike or 2 before a truly epic next week in Sedona. Along the way was an old windmill and a few....
....examples of some magnificent saguaros. I was at a Home Depot and saw a couple of saguaros for sale, about 3' high....$500+. Wow.
I reached the Quilter's Trail and turned to the east. This begins a mostly gentle, rolling rise into the Rincon foothills. Nothing too steep but it's a fairly long climb until at mile 5.....
....I reached the head of a ravine and decided to that was enough for today. Had I continued I would have reached the Manning Camp Trail. Most of the climbing to this point is in the final mile, having an average grade of 12.5%.
Nice but far from awesome views. Typical Sonoran desert appearance.
After a brief break, I head back, finishing with 10 miles and 1400' of climbing. Don't think I'd do this again unless there is a better way to reach the start of Quilter's. That 2.2 miles on Loma Alta is rather boring.