Entertainment Magazine: Tucson: Mt. Lemmon

Fire danger increases on Mt. Lemmon

Tucson's recreational outlet, Mount Lemmon (Mt. Lemmon) is usually available all year for hiking, camping and day trips.

But, for the summer, much of the mountain range will have limits to the public because of drought and severe fire danger this year. Any closure of the Coronada National Forest may soon include most trails, camp grounds and pull outs. Mt. Lemmon and Summerhaven, at the top of the mountain, is currently open and so are all camping and hiking areas.

Touring Mt. Lemmon

A visit to Mount Lemmon is a scenic hour-long drive from the desert floor of Tucson to a lush, regrowing, forest over 9,000 feet in the sky.

The foothills of the Catalina Mountains north of Tucson, AZ. begins with the hour long journey to the top of the hill known as Mount Lemmon (Mt. Lemmon), Arizona and the village of Summerhaven, Arizona. As the weather cools in the Tucson valley, it also cools at the top of the Santa Catalina mountains by 25-30 degree F.

If you plan to travel in the morning, it will be chillier when you get to the top at Summerhaven or the Ski Lift. Bring an extra sweater or jacket in case the temperatures drop. Visit Mt. Lemmon and Summerhaven.

Mt. Lemmon

Arizona's Gold Rush in the Catalinas

The Santa Catalina mountains has been experiencing a gold rush for hundreds of years. Just below Mt. Lemmon lies one of the great stories of the search for gold in the mountains- the lost city and the lost Iron Door mine. Explore the historical records that account for that thousands of pounds of gold and gold in quartz that has been extracted from the Catalina mountains. Read about the Treasures of the Santa Catalina Mountains..

Legends and history of Mt. Lemmon


Making Mt. Lemmon out of Lemonade

The devastating Aspen Fire on June 17, 2003 nearly destroyed the Summerhaven community. Only a few building withstood the inferno. Reconstruction is continuing with new cabins, stores and a community center. Watch a video of the Santa Catalina Mountains Aspen's fire.

Top Photo: "Nixon head" rock, or otherwise known as Goose Head rock, located north of Windy Point. © 1973 BZB.

Bottom Photo: Overlooking Summerhaven during construction after the fire.Bottom Photo: Looking over Summerhaven during the first snow of the season on Thanksgiving Day 2008. The unexpected downfall stranded a number of tourists. © 2009 BZB.

Mt. Lemmon is also written as Mt. Lemon, Mount Lemmon, Mt Lemon, Muont and Mount Lemon.

That has lead to some confusion to the correct spelling for Mt. Lemmon. Frog Mountain is another name for the Summerhaven valley.


Mt. Lemmon and Summerhaven Events

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Own a piece of Mt. Lemmon

Cody StoneLocal prospector and artist, Flint Carter mines the stones from Mt. Lemmon, then cuts, polishes and fabricates rings, necklaces, bracelets, money clips, bolo ties and other exquisite jewelry- all mined from claims in the Santa Catalina Mountains. Own a piece of the mountain. Polished stones available with silver in quartz, and with gold, silver in quartz. See a selection of Cody Stone jewelry, art and stones. Call Flint at 520-289-4566.

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NEW! The Road to Mount Lemmon: A Father, A Family, and the Making of Summerhaven (Paperback)

by Mary Ellen Barnes (Author)

As you wind your way up the Catalina Highway, it doesn’t matter whether you’re a first-time visitor or a native Tucsonan; you know you’re on the way to someplace special.

The Santa Catalina Mountains first captivated Tony Zimmerman on a 1937 hunting trip. Regard for the alpine beauty must have been in his genes—he was the son of Swiss German immigrants—and by 1940 the Tucson schoolteacher had begun taking his family to Mount Lemmon to spend the summer. Back then, the road up the mountain was a rough two-track dirt road from Oracle, and Summerhaven was nothing but a sleepy cluster of summer cabins. But Tony Zimmerman was to help change all of that.

The Road to Mount Lemmon is a beguiling memoir of the Catalina Mountains told by the daughter of one of the pioneers in the life and development of Mount Lemmon’s communities. Mary Ellen Barnes tells how her father Tony resigned from teaching in 1943 to devote his career to the development of this mountain oasis. He not only sold real estate for long time landowner Randolph Jenks, he even bought the village’s tiny two-room store, installing a sawmill to build a larger store, and built the Mount Lemmon Inn. And as she spins Tony’s personal saga, she also gives readers a glimpse of the Catalinas before Tucson became a boom town, recalling idyllic adventures in wild country and the cowboys, rangers, ranchers, and loggers who worked there.

Product Details
Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: University of Arizona Press (June 11, 2009)

ial">Climb Mt. Lemmon with one of the more popular hiking books about the Catalina Mountains. 324 pages. Publisher: E Squared Enterprises; 1st edition (2000). Language: English.