Senita Basin Loop

Ajo, Arizona

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A day hike through the Senita Basin, The Senita Basin is a low depression surrounded by spurs of the Puerto Blanco Mountains. It is a good place to spot desert wildlife, especially javelinas and coyotes. It also features the abandoned shafts of the old Martinez Mine. The basin is famed for the occurrence of the rare senita cactus, which grows wild at only a handful of sites in the United States. This cactus has the same growth form as the organ pipe cactus, but has fewer, broader ribs and sparser needles. Its most distinguishing characteristic is a shaggy, beardlike growth of long, grayish needles at the tips of its stalks. Look for senita cactus near the picnic area where the trail starts, and keep an eye out for the stout, gray-barked elephant tree, also present in the basin.

Senita Basin Loop Professional Review and Guide

"A day hike through the Senita Basin, The Senita Basin is a low depression surrounded by spurs of the Puerto Blanco Mountains. It is a good place to spot desert wildlife, especially javelinas and coyotes. It also features the abandoned shafts of the old Martinez Mine. The basin is famed for the occurrence of the rare senita cactus, which grows wild at only a handful of sites in the United States.

This cactus has the same growth form as the organ pipe cactus, but has fewer, broader ribs and sparser needles. Its most distinguishing characteristic is a shaggy, beardlike growth of long, grayish needles at the tips of its stalks. Look for senita cactus near the picnic area where the trail starts, and keep an eye out for the stout, gray-barked elephant tree, also present in the basin."

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Ajo
Distance: 2.8
Elevation Gain: 100 feet
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Skill Level: Easy
Duration: Day hike
Season: Best October to April
Trailhead Elevation: 1,700 feet
Top Elevation: 1,760 feet
Local Contacts: Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument
Local Maps: Trails Illustrated Organ Pipe Cactus
Driving Directions: Directions to Senita Basin Loop

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May 2018