Freeman Homestead

Round Trip Distance: 1 mile
Difficulty: Moderate
Elevation: 3003 - 3146 feet
Cellphone: 3-5 bars
Time: 45 mins.
Trailhead: Freeman Homestead
Fee: $15/vehicle
Attractions: Desert ecology, old homestead site

The Freeman Homestead trail is located in the Rincon Mountain District of the Saguaro National Park near Tucson, Arizona. The trail leads to a former homestead site that at one time had an adobe home surrounded by a fence made from ocotillo stems. The one mile trail makes a loop down a short hill through tall saguaro and mesquite trees to the former home site before returning to the trailhead.

The trail begins at a parking area along the spur road that leads to the Javelina Picnic Area.

Just like the rest of the trails in Saguaro National Park the Freeman Homestead trail can be hiked anytime of the year. This particular post was made from a hike that was done on Christmas day with temperatures in the mid 60's F.

The trail starts out crossing a flat hilltop covered with many creosote and other bushes.

There are interpretive signs along the trail that have a column along the right side for children's activities.

The trail splits before descending the small hillside and begins the loop portion of the hike. A trail marker directs hikers to the right to follow the loop in the counter-clockwise direction.

The only part of the homestead that is left is the concrete foundation with lots of metal scraps scattered about the area. The homestead which was made by Safford Freeman dates back to the early 1930's. It was acquired by the National Park Service in the early 1950's.

The trail continues past the homestead site and has a short arm that leads down to the wash. Some hikers continue up the wash until they pick up the trail once again while others backtrack a short distance and continue around the loop.

Regardless of which route you take watch for the spot where the trail leaves the wash and continues back up the hill.

Stone steps make the trail easier to hike as well as help controlling erosion.

The Freeman Homestead trail is a good short hike for both children and adults. With the Javelina Picnic Area close by the options for a family outing become obvious. More challenging trails are also available from the picnic area for those that don't mind climbing the mountain ridge. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.