Saguaro National Park West

From Gates Pass Trail Head looking east towards Tucson AZ

After several months in the warm, humid foliage of the Florida Everglades writing short stories and poems. My thoughts often drifted to hiking and backpacking the desert areas of the Southwestern US.

Early springtime in Saguaro National Park West is a magical place, with flowering plants and the ever-impressive Saguaro Cactus. Low temperatures and frost can kill a Saguaro, so they are not usually found above 4,000 feet. Saguaros have pleats that allow them to expand when they drink water (like an accordion) and contract as they use up their water supply.

The Saguaro is a tree-like species of cactus, which can grow to be over 40 feet tall. It is native to the areas of the Sonoran Desert in Arizona, into the Mexican State of Sonora, the Whipple Mountains and the Imperial County areas of California. But when the Saguaro Catus blossoms which is the state wildflower of Arizon, they are incredibly beautiful.

After living my entire life in the midwest and on the east coast of the US hiking and backpacking. I have fallen in love with the desert cacti, the blooming flowers after rain or snow, the trails for day hikes, and backpacking.

Saguaro West National Park was my first experience with hiking in the desert. The park’s surrounding trails will forever hold a special place in my outdoor life.

Hiking in the desert, I discovered every plant has a defensive thorns, spike or thorns keeping animals from eating them and humans from destroying them most of the time. I will provide more photos of the blossoming plants, but until then click the link below to read about the plants of Saguaro National Park.

Plants of the Saguaro National Park link


  1. I love Arizona and have had the opportunity to hike there a few times. I haven’t been to the Saguaro National Park yet but will definitely add it for a future trip. The pictures were great.

    Liked by 1 person

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