Arizona Hiking Gallery

Black Canyon National Recreation Trail
Black Canyon City, AZ
January 20, 2019

Gallery contains 33 photos

Gallery last updated: 2/20/2019

This was a very nice hike on the Black Canyon National Recreation Trail from the Black Canyon Trailhead in Black Canyon City. The hike was about five miles out-and-back from the trailhead to the northern crossing of the Agua Fria River. We had planned to hike a little further, but the crossing of the Agua Fria River here was bit problematic due to the high level of water, So we wandered a short ways up the river, before eating lunch and heading back.

Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 1
This hike on the Black Canyon National Recreation Trail starts at the Black Canyon Trailhead in Black Canyon City.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 2
Near the start the trail enters an area with some nice Saguaro Cactus (Carnegiea gigantea).
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 3
Saguaro Cactus (Carnegiea gigantea) along the Black Canyon Trail.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 4
A majestic Saguaro Cactus (Carnegiea gigantea).
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 5
A majestic Saguaro Cactus (Carnegiea gigantea).
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 6
More Saguaro Cactus (Carnegiea gigantea) on the rocky hillside.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 7
Brittlebush (Encelia farinosa) blooms along the Black Canyon Trail in front of a Saguaro studded hillside.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 8
Saguaro Cactus (Carnegiea gigantea) reach skyward as a California Barrel Cactus (Ferocactus cylindraceus) snuggles against a rock outcrop.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 9
Brittlebush (Encelia farinosa) flowering at the foot of a Saguaro Cactus (Carnegiea gigantea).
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 10
A view of the mesas to the northeast of Black Canyon City, east of Interstate Highway 17. The trailhead parking can be seen at the left edge of the photo.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 11
A wider view of the mesas to the northeast of Black Canyon City.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 12
I love the red spines on this California Barrel Cactus (Ferocactus cylindraceus).
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 13
A view of a bend in the Agua Fria River. It had quite a bit of water flowing in it.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 14
California Barrel Cactus (Ferocactus cylindraceus).
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 15
The spiney crown of California Barrel Cactus (Ferocactus cylindraceus) ringed with last season's dried up flowers.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 16
A view of the Agua Fria River lined with Cottonwoods (Populus fremontii).
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 17
An oddball monstrose California Barrel Cactus (Ferocactus cylindraceus). This strange growth is cause by mutations in the plant tissues which results irregular growth patterns.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 18
Close up of the surface of the monstrose California Barrel Cactus (Ferocactus cylindraceus).
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 19
A view of the Agua Fria River. The sunny plain is covered with Buckhorn Cholla (Cylindropuntia Acanthocarpa) and punctuated with a few Saguaro Cactus (Carnegiea gigantea).
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 20
A closer view of the Agua Fria River.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 21
Tamarisk (Tamarix spp.), also called Salt Cedar, have tiny scale-like leaves and pink and white flowers. Several very similar species of Tamarisk have been introduced to North America and has become extremely invasive especially in riparian habitats and outcompeting and displacing native plant communities.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 22
A triad of lichen covered boulders.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 23
A young Dudleya saxosa nestled among lichen covered rocks.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 24
A closer view of young Dudleya saxosa.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 25
Brittlebush (Encelia farinosa) blooming alongside the Black Canyon Trail.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 26
California Barrel Cactus (Ferocactus cylindraceus) takes hold in a niche on a rocky cliff splashed with lichen.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 27
There were quite a few Pink Fairy Duster (Calliandra eriophylla) plants growing in the area. This one sporting a few seed pods.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 28
Seed pods of Pink Fairy Duster (Calliandra eriophylla) are covered with short, white, soft hairs and outlined in a brownish red color.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 29
A view looking north up the Agua Fria River and overlooking a deveolopment of Black Canyon City.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 30
Arizona Fishhook Cactus (Mammillaria Grahamii) finds a foothold in a lichen covered rocky shelf.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 31
A wonderful lichen covered cliff face.
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 32
A duo of California Barrel Cactus (Ferocactus cylindraceus).
Black Canyon National Recreation Trail: Image 33
Buckhorn Cholla (Cylindropuntia Acanthocarpa).