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PIMA TRAILS ASSOCIATION “Protecting Pima County’s Trails since 1987” Vol. 22, No. 1

Spring 2009

Trails Advocacy Update Saguaro National Park The trails plan for Saguaro National Park is nearing completion. The Arizona Trail is included, as is the access to the trail by users from Camino Loma Alta. A trailhead is added at the east end of Broadway. The Park’s preferred alternative for the Rincon District is something we can live with if the proposed Freeman Access is approved. The Freeman Access would add an access point in an area of critical need south of Broadway Boulevard, which has a lot of horse traffic. The Park’s preferred plan for the Tucson Mountain District closes Golden Gate Road to vehicular traffic and opens the road to hiker, equestrian and mountain bike use. This plan has also identified nine new access points around the boundary of the park, and adds three trailheads; one at the northern end of Golden Gate Road just off of Picture Rocks Road, one at Belmont and another west of Sandario Road. For additional information, please go to Tumamoc Hill Tuesday, February 23rd, was a significant day in the annals of land conservation in Pima County. Tumamoc Hill’s western side–the 320 acres of gently rolling land–was auctioned by the Arizona State Land Department. Pima County, the only entity to put in an application (continued on page 3)

President’s Message


pring, however short it may be in Tucson, is a wonderful time to take to the trails. Get out and enjoy the great weather before it gets too hot.


ur good friend and trail planner, Steve Anderson, is recovering from the effects of the stroke he experienced in November and has returned to work. We are looking forward to his full recovery and him carrying on his vision for the trail system in Pima County.


n this issue, you will find information on Saguaro National Park’s Trail Plan that we have worked on since 2006 and the latest news about the Pima County Master Trail Plan update. Also, check out the new trailhead at Sweetwater Preserve in the Tucson Mountains and don’t forget the Arizona Trail, which is nearing completion in Pima County. Much of our time and energy has been focused on these large projects for the last few years and we are pleased that the vision is being fulfilled.


et us know if there are problems with trails that you use regularly. There are over 1000 miles of trails in the Pima County Trails System and even though we try to stay up on access or conflict issues, we count on you to tell us when you see something that should be corrected. Just leave a message on our voice mail – 577-7919 – and we’ll check it out and get back to you.


nd thanks to all of our faithful members and clubs who support us every year. We couldn’t do it without you.

Sue Clark, President

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PTA Statement of Purpose Pima Trails Association is a nonprofit, 501(c)3, all-volunteer trails advocacy organization comprised of hikers, equestrians and mountain bikers working together to protect and preserve trails in Pima County. PTA Goals 1. Establish an integrated multi-use public trails system. 2. Assure permanent access to trails on public lands. 3. Promote cooperation with land owners and developers to preserve access to traditional-use trails on private lands. 4. Foster cooperation and communication among all trail user-groups. 5. Communicate and cooperate with government agencies on trail matters. 6. Keep the community informed about trail issues and opportunities. 7. Facilitate the safe and harmonious multi-use of trails through trail education, community programs and fund-raising activities. 8. Encourage the development of new recreational and historic trails. 9. Expand the effectiveness and influence of Pima Trails Association. 2009 PTA Board Members Sue Clark, President Terri Gay, Vice President Bev Showalter, Secretary Don Scheer, Treasurer Directors Jon Shouse Mike Studer Sharon Urban Helen Wilson

Welcome, New Members Dave Thompson Thomas Burleigh George Truckenmiller

PTA Events

May Tuesday, May 26, 7 pm PTA Board Meeting Hampton Inn, 5950 N. Oracle Rd. June National Trails Day, June 6 June 23, 7 pm PTA Board Meeting Hampton Inn, 5950 N. Oracle Rd. July NO PTA Board Meeting August Tuesday, August 25, 7 pm PTA Board Meeting Hampton Inn, 5950 N. Oracle Rd. The Pima Trails Association Newsletter is a quarterly publication of Pima Trails Association Post Office Box 35007 Tucson, Arizona 85740 Phone 520-577-7919 Publication of advertising should not be deemed an endorsement by PTA. Story copy reflects the views of the author and does not necessarily reflect the views of PTA. Story copy is subject to editing as needed. Editor: Susan Dawson-Cook Contributors: Sue Clark, Bev Showalter Š Pima Trails Association 2009 All rights reserved. Articles or parts thereof may be reproduced with permission if acknowledgment is given to Pima Trails Association. Advertising may not be reproduced.

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Oro Valley Offers National Trails Day Moonlight Hike Join the Town of Oro Valley on June 6 for a 3-mile Moonlight Hike in Honeybee Canyon. Meet at Oro Valley Town Hall, 11000 N. La Canada Drive (NE corner of La Canada Drive and Naranja Drive) at 6:30 PM. Parking is very limited at the hike site so carpooling from Town Hall will be necessary. An educational presentation follows the hike. Please bring flashlights. Refreshments provided. Cost is $5 per hiker. You MUST pre-register to receive a T-shirt, limited to the first 100 registrants. To register, email nellis@ or call 229-5057.

National Trails Day 2009: Take a Hike & Win! Explore trails in Arizona by visiting Arizona State Parks (ASP). When you visit a participating State Park between now and June 6, you can register to win State Parks merchandise! ASP is giving away a set of Arizona Trail Guides, a hiking stick and baseball hat, plus an Annual Pass and 2-Night Stay in a cabin or yurt. Download and print the Registration Form from the Arizona State Parks website and drop it off at any of the following park visitor centers: Dead Horse Ranch, Fool Hollow Lake, Homolovi Ruins, Lyman Lake, Red Rock, Slide Rock, Boyce Thompson Arboretum, Catalina, Lost Dutchman, Oracle, Patagonia Lake, Picacho Peak, Roper Lake, Tubac Presidio. Must be 18 to enter. Registration forms must be completed and dropped off by June 6, 2009. Drawing will be completed by July 15, 2009.

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to bid on the property, was the only bidder present at the auction, making the process easier than expected. While the land will not be open to trail use, we applaud Pima County’s continuous efforts on behalf of open space in Pima County.

Dave Baker, owner of the Summit Hut, presents PTA president Sue Clark a $1000 donation at the Banff Film Festival held at the Fox Theater. Photo by Paula Stuht.

Arizona State Parks Releases Draft Trails 2010 Trails Plan Every five years, Arizona State Parks surveys Arizonans about their use of motorized and nonmotorized trails. These responses help formulate the next State trails plan by highlighting concerns and usage patterns of trail users. You can view a summary of the 2010 Trails Plan Draft at: There’s still time to add your comments. The public comment period closes June 30, 2009.

Sweetwater Preserve Trailhead The latest information to share with you about the Sweetwater Preserve is that the trailhead slated for completion is now finished. The trailhead, a natural earthen parking lot, has room for cars and horse rigs alike, and is ready for you to use now. To get to the trailhead, take El Camino del Cerro about .8 of a mile west of Silverbell, and turn left on Tortolita Road. Then drive approximately one mile south to the trailhead site. Pima Regional Trails Plan Pima County’s Trails Plan began its update process more than a year ago, and the plan is now nearing the public meeting stage. A draft of the plan is out–less the map and trail descriptions–and is presently being reviewed by government and citizen advocates. There will be meetings for the public to review the plan. Hopefully they will take place in late fall so that a full range of people who are most likely to have usable comment for them will be in town. Arizona Trail The Arizona Trail is nearing culmination in Pima County. The last section of the trail is approximately 2.5 miles in length, and will go from the Lakes Road to the boundary of the Coronado National Forest. Steve Anderson and Mark Flint are preparing the paperwork for submission to the Arizona State Land Department, and once the trail site has been identified and acquired, building will begin in earnest. Pima County’s section, about 30 miles, will then be complete. The Arizona Trail is one of the best trails in southern Arizona, and if you haven’t had a chance to try it out, I heartily recommend it.

Sonoran Desert Mountain Bicyclists

Saddlebrooke Hiking Club hiking_welcome.htm

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EDITORIAL: Trails, Bike Paths and Sidewalks are Infrastructure, Too

the trips made daily in our cities are two miles or less and 25% less than a mile. Many of these are by car but could be made by bike or on foot— with improved facilities. We can visualize the part of each dollar spent as smaller than the number “1” on the corner of the bill. But, if you visualize what has been accomplished, catalyzed by this small investment, you would see hundreds of miles of bike paths and greenways that are transforming our cities, and countless barrels of oil not burned. You would see millions of trail users, billions of private dollars invested in quality urban redevelopment in Denver, Chattanooga, and Pittsburgh stimulated by these amenities.

Trails offer a large return for a very small investment by Robert Searns Chair, American Trails Board of Directors “More creative solutions are needed, and bikes and walking shoes are part of this solution.” Just how many automobile bridges can you build with the penny or so of each Federal Transportation dollar spent on bicycling and walking facilities? Is that really the deal breaker? Of late, some have suggested that there is a causal tie between federal investment in non-motorized facilities and the growing problem of deteriorating roads and bridge infrastructure. Worse still there have been comments and political advertisements trivializing bicycle and walking facilities as somehow obsolete, frivolous and less than worthy. While these improvements might seem to be a good scapegoat for our highway ills, the facts say this is simply not true. The reality is that while nearly 10% of all trips to work, school and the store are by bike or foot, the amount of federal dollars invested nationwide for bike and pedestrian improvements has averaged around 1% over the past decade or so. It is also noteworthy that more than 40% of

Southern Arizona Hiking Club

Southern Arizona Arabian Horse Association 520-762-5353

Some have suggested that these investments are a throwback to the 1900s with cartoon-like figures on old-time bicycles. Perhaps it is these critics living in the past, though their past is the 1950s, a time of cheap oil, uncrowded roads and smaller populations. It’s a nostalgic vision that does not take into account that today— according to the Texas Transportation Institute— the average commuter spends 88 extra hours a year in their car at a cost of $78 billion in lost time, burning 2.9 billion extra gallons of fuel spewing tons of contaminants. That vision also overlooks that in the 1950s a school kid had a longer life expectancy than today’s child with nearly one in five clinically overweight due in large part to being driven rather than walking. How shortsighted to envision a transportation system epitomized by an SUV modeled after an assault vehicle that burns a gallon of gasoline to convey an overweight occupant eight miles down a crumbling road. Is this the pinnacle of American ingenuity and know-how? We can do better! The 2007 reality is that we need a diversity of solutions and each has its place. While investment in alternative modes of transportation won’t fully solve these daunting problems, simply building more roads and bridges won’t either. More creative solutions are needed and bikes and walking shoes are part of this solution and they are a very apropos means of travel for these times. No one in the bicycle and trails community suggests that highways and bridges are not absolutely necessary infrastructure to be funded and maintained. We are saying, though, that bicycle and walking facilities are also part of the picture. Even in trying times this kind of investment can and should be a part of the picture. In the depths of the depression, FDR dispatched tens of thousands of unemployed youth into the National Forests, building a legacy of over (continued on page 5)

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(continued from page 4)

Mike Studer

100,000 miles of trails, instilling a sense of stewardship and a sense of pride. Some say that action may have helped save our Republic by engaging a restless populace and stimulating the economy. Surely we can similarly allocate a penny or so on the dollar to help solve today’s daunting problems.

Associate Broker, GRI 3446 N. Country Club Rd. Tucson, AZ 85716 520-370-7587

More importantly these improvements are something that the public— the taxpayers who ultimately fund all of the programs— have said they desire and demand. Survey after survey shows that trails, walking and bicycle facilities rank in first priority for recreational activity, in deciding where to buy a home and where public funds should be spent. In Kansas City for example citizens ranked investing in trails over building a new football stadium! Indeed one of the engines transforming our inner cities and sustaining our economy is the rise of a class of creative workers and entrepreneurs who demand trails, greenways, bicycle and pedestrian amenities— an essential ingredient revitalizing urban areas from Denver to Detroit.

The Magic Garden 7909 E. 22nd Street 520-885-7466

We call on our elected officials to address the problem of our crumbling infrastructure in a positive way: looking for leadership and ideas, rather than a “fall guy” or laying blame. There are workable and equitable ways to secure the revenues and move forward in solving these real problems. We at American Trails stand ready to support and assist in that process. We also encourage the tens of millions of Americans who use trails, greenways, bicycle facilities and sidewalks to make their voices heard. Robert M. Searns is Chair of the Board of Directors of American Trails. Bob is the founding owner of Urban Edges, Inc., a planning and development firm based in Denver. He has worked with communities nationwide on greenways, trails, and outdoor resource conservation. For additional information, please contact Bob at the American Trails office at 530-547-2060 or via email at American Trails offers their website as a public resource to share ideas and opinions on trails and greenways. We have not evaluated the accuracy, feasibility, or legality of any of the material or articles. The opinions and editorials presented here do not necessarily reflect the opinion or support of American Trails. Reprinted from

Page 5 5045 E. Speedway 520-795-1125 605 E. Wetmore 520-888-1000

News from County Line Riders of Catalina by Bev Showalter CLRC continues to maintain Tortolita Preserve trail, along with mountain.biker Max Shemwell. Town of Marana has begun to fence the Preserve, and added a “step over” at the entrance to keep the ATV’s out. Cattle still graze in there. This is a nice, fairly flat trail, rocky in places with some climbing, but because it is located in the Tortolita “fan” the area is very sandy, making it difficult for the bikes. To get there: From Tangerine Road go north on Dove Mountain, turn left (west) on Moore to the gate. Park on the other side of the gate. The trail is about 12 miles long. Other trails in the area: Drive north on Dove Mountain road all the way to the end, park at the trailhead. There are numerous hiking trails going into the Tortolitas. Parks and Recreation Director Tom Ellis has been working hard developing these trails with the help of local hiking clubs. If you have not ventured up there yet, I suggest you plan on going soon.

Search and Rescue/Posse and the Forest partnered in clearing out the far west end of the parking area. In two weekends we cleared tons of debris and installed horse corrals. Riding (or hiking/biking) east from this trailhead on the Arizona Trail takes you on a nice trail heading east toward the Rincons. If you have not ridden or hiked this trail you are missing out on a treat. In 2008, CLRC partnered with the Forest in rebuilding corrals at the newly acquired Half Moon Ranch in the Dragoons. Joining us was Mary McCool and her Cochise Trails Association members. This ranch site is now available for weekend “rent” through the Forest reservation system online. There is a nearby horse only trail that takes you up through the Dragoons. The trail is very rocky and hair-raising in spots. The ranch house can accommodate about ten people/horses.

CLRC will be celebrating our 15th year anniversary in May. CLRC formed to CLRC just completed preserve local trails and fixing the spring box and advocate for more trails replacing 100 feet of new and trailheads to serve pipe at Deer Camp on the trails community. Our the Goff Forest Lease in advocacy has expanded the Catalinas so that the to include southern Pinal wildlife drinker is now full County as well as all of and getting fresh water at Pima County. We believe a slow pace. For ten years Lee Showalter riding the Dragoon Trail on Doc near the in trails sharing, equine CLRC has partnered with Half Moon Ranch. education, maintaining Game and Fish “Adopt-Atrails, access for all users, and supporting Pima Trails AsRanch” program that helps local ranchers with various sociation in the tireless work PTA does. tasks such as moving cattle and patrolling and fixing fence lines. Our current adopted ranch is the Santa Rita Ranch. For more information visit our CLRC web site: CLRC is the Segment Steward for the Oracle Ridge section of the Arizona Trail. We maintain and keep the trail in good shape for all trail users. If you have not experienced our segment, drive north thru the town of Oracle, turn right (south) on the Old Mt. Lemmon Road, go past Oracle State Park, keep right when road turns to dirt, and park at the Pima County Sheriff’s Mounted Posse American Flag Trailhead. This trail is rocky and is a ing experience, but the vistas are wonderful from the top of Oracle Ridge. posse6 @ Have you been to the old Prison Camp (Gordon Hirabayashi) trailhead on the Mt. Lemmon Highway? This trailhead/campground is on the Arizona Trail. Ten or so years ago CLRC, Tucson Saddle Club, Southern Arizona

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Southeastern Arizona Horseman’s Association SEAHA

Analytica Systems International 281-516-3950

Epic Rides 520-745-2033

Town of Oro Valley 520-229-5051

24 Hours in the Old Pueblo Event Producer

Colossal Cave Mountain Park 16721 E. Old Spanish Trail 520-647-PARK (7275)

Pam and Louis Mindes Long Realty

County Line Riders of Catalina P.O. Box 8881 Catalina, AZ 85738

GraphiXadventure, LLC logos, newsletters, signage, marketing 520-488-3960

Fair Wheel Bikes 1110 E. 6th Street 520-844-9018

White Stallion Ranch 520-297-0252

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National Trails Day June 6, 2009 See page 2 for details on Arizona NTD Events

Pima Trails Association Statement of Purpose



Pima Trails Association is a nonprofit, volunteer trails advocacy organization comprised of hikers, equestrians and mountain bikers working together to protect and preserve trails in Pima County. E-mail:__________________________ MEMBERSHIP:  NEW  RENEWAL


(Please type or print. In order to preserve your privacy, we do not sell or share our membership list with anyone.) Date: __________________ Name: __________________________________________________________________ Address: ________________________________________________________________________________________ City: ____________________ State: ___ Zip: ____________ Home #:_______________ Work #:________________ Website (if business): _____________________________ Please send a digital version of logos for free listing in newsletter. How do you use the trails? (hike, bike, horse, etc.)_________________________________________________________ YEARLY MEMBERSHIP FEE: The membership year is January 1 - December 31. No memberships are prorated. We will recognize you in our upcoming newsletter. Please check here if you wish to remain anonymous:  If you choose to join at the Booster, Advocate or Guardian level, please indicate t-shirt size: S M L XL _____ $15 Membership _____ $20 Family Membership _____ $50 Organization: # members_______ _____ $100 Business Sponsor

_____ $100-$499 Trail Booster _____ $500-$999 Trail Advocate _____ $1000-$5000 Trail Guardian _____ Other _________________

Make checks payable to: Pima Trails Association Mail all checks to: PTA Membership Post Office Box 35007 Tucson, Arizona 85740

Pima Trails Association Spring 2009  

News from the Pima Trails Association

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