Grand Canyon Chapter
Spring 2014
Arizona’s Wilderness
By Meg Weesner
he Wilderness Act of 1964 defined
federal wilderness and designated 54
wilderness areas on National Forest
land. Five of these original wilderness areas
were in Arizona – the Chiricahua, Galiuro,
Mazatzal, Sierra Ancha, and Superstition
Even more importantly, the Wilderness
Act established a process by which additional areas could be added by Congress to the
National Wilderness Preservation System
(NWPS). Federal agencies were directed to
evaluate roadless lands and to recommend
potential wilderness additions. Organized
groups and individual citizens can also recommend areas for wilderness designation by
working with Congressional representatives.
In the last 50 years, Congress has passed
more than 100 laws adding to the NWPS.
Eight of these laws have added wilderness ar-
eas in Arizona, which now has 90 wilderness
areas (second only to California) covering
4.5 million acres (fourth behind Alaska, California, and Idaho). Arizona is one of only
five states that have wilderness areas managed by each of the four wilderness agencies.
Arizona’s wilderness additions started
slowly. In 1970, Petrified Forest National
Park became one of the first two units of
the National Park System to have designated
wilderness. The Mt. Baldy Wilderness in the
Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest (NF) was
designated under the same law.
Two more forest wildernesses were
added in 1972. Pine Mountain Wilderness
in the Prescott and Tonto NFs was added in
February of that year, and Sycamore Canyon
Wilderness, part of the Coconino, Kaibab,
and Prescott NFs, was added in March.
See Wilderness continued on pg. 13.
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Explore, enjoy, and protect the planet
Sierra Club
Grand Canyon Chapter
Arizona Chapter Action Directory
Canyon Echo
Spring 2014
Vol. 50 No. 2
Canyon Echo © 2014. Canyon Echo (ISSN 01647024) is published quarterly for Sierra Club members by the Sierra Club Grand Canyon Chapter,
202 E. McDowell Rd., Ste. 277, Phoenix, AZ
85004. Phone: 602-253-8633, Fax: 602-258-6533.
Printed at Valley Newspapers.
Chapter Director
Sandy Bahr
[email protected]
Chapter Coordinator
Tiffany Sprague
[email protected]
Grand Canyon Conservation Program Coordinator
Alicyn Gitlin
[email protected]
Border Conservation Program Coordinator and Coal to Clean Energy
Dan Millis
[email protected]
Water Sentinels Program Coordinator
Steve Pawlowski
[email protected]
Front page banner designed by Erika Gronek.
Printed on 100% recycled paper with soy ink.
EDITOR: Tiffany Sprague
602-253-9140, [email protected]
Outings Editor: Jerry Nelson
602-279-4668, [email protected]
Mailing Organizer: Jerry Nelson
Publications Committee: Priscilla Benbrook,
Jon Findley, Kurt Florman, Chris Gehlker,
Tricia Gerrodette, Renée Guillory,
Tyler Kokjohn, Jerry Nelson,
Carole Piszczek-Sheffield, Mike Smith
Publications Chair: Keith Bagwell
520-623-0269, [email protected]
Webmaster: John Sheffield
[email protected]
(xc) 2014 Chapter
Executive Committee
(ExCom) members
Ex-Com (At-Large):
Elna Otter (xc)
Keith Bagwell (xc)
Lynne Cockrum-Murphy
David McCaleb (xc)
John Beshears
Don Steuter (xc)
Natalie Lucas
Lynn DeMuth (xc)
Bev Full
Thom Hulen (xc)
Jim Vaaler (xc)
Mark Coryell (xc)
Ken Langton (xc)
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
2014 Group Voting Representatives to Chapter Ex-Com (see pp. 12–13 for contact information):
Palo Verde: Mike Brady
Joe Shannon
Rincon: Randy Serraglio
Bev Full
Sedona/Verde Valley: Carole Piszczek-Sheffield
Yavapai: Gary Beverly
Chapter Announcements
SUBSCRIPTIONS: Annual dues to the Sierra Club are
APR 5–6, JUN 28–29 (SAT–SUN) Chapter Conservation (SAT) and Executive Committee (SUN) meetings. Club leaders meet
to consider matters related to statewide conservation efforts, share experiences across groups, and coordinate strategy to align
our Chapter mission and goals with that of national Sierra Club. For more information, contact Don Steuter at 602-956-5057 or
[email protected] or Elna Otter at 520-212-9736 or [email protected]
ADVERTISING: Advertising is sold on a first-come,
APR 9 and JUN 11 (WED) 6:30 p.m. Wildlife Activist Group meeting. Are you interested in learning more about the wildlife that
calls our state home and in working for species’ protection? Join us to learn more about what’s happening with Arizona’s wildlife,
upcoming projects and opportunities, and how you can get involved. For more information, contact our chapter office at 602-2538633 or [email protected]
$39 (including $1 for Canyon Echo). Subscription rate for
non-members is $10. Send check payable to Sierra Club Canyon Echo, 202 E. McDowell Rd., Ste. 277, Phoenix,
AZ 85004.
space-available basis. The editor reserves the right to refuse
any advertisements, and inclusion of advertisements does
not imply endorsement by the Sierra Club. All interactions
between advertisers and consumers are solely the responsibilities of those parties.
SUBMISSIONS: Send electronic or hard copies to the
editor (include a self-addressed stamped envelope for
return of hard copies). Indicate copyright or Creative
Commons preference. We are not responsible for lost or
damaged items. Writer’s guidelines can be obtained by
contacting the editor. All rights to publication of articles
in this issue are reserved. The deadline is the first day of the
month preceding the issue. Opinions expressed in Canyon
Echo are those of the contributors and do not necessarily
reflect the official views or policies of the Sierra Club.
POSTMASTER: Send address changes and postage
due to Sierra Club Member Services, c/o Canyon Echo,
P.O. Box 421041, Palm Coast, FL 32142-6417. Periodicals postage paid at Phoenix, AZ.
APR 21, MAY 19, JUN 16 (MON) 6:30 p.m. Political Committee meetings. 2014 is an election year. Help us make sure we elect
more environmentally-friendly candidates by being part of our Political Committee! For more information, contact Thom Hulen at
602-619-9717 or [email protected] NOTE: Participation in the Political Committee is restricted to current Sierra Club members.
APR 22, MAY 27, JUN 24 (TUE) 6:30 p.m. Energy Committee gatherings. Discussions, programs, and field trips encompass
renewable energy and energy efficiency campaigns nationally and locally. Everyone is invited to participate, no matter how much
or how little you know about energy issues. Specific time and location will be announced online or via email. To be added to our list
or to get more information, please contact Jon Findley at 480-756-2916 or [email protected]
MAY 7 (WED) 5:30 p.m. Publications Committee meeting. Have an idea? Help plan future issues of Canyon Echo! Contact Keith
Bagwell at 520-623-0269 or [email protected] or Tiffany Sprague at 602-253-9140 or [email protected]
JUN 1 (SUN) Copy deadline for Summer 2014 Canyon Echo. Theme of “Arizona’s Wilderness: What’s Missing?” Articles, art,
photographs, poetry, essays, and brief epiphanies are welcome. Contact the editor before submitting at 602-253-9140 or tiffany.
[email protected] to discuss word count, photos to include, licensing, issue topics, and to request submission guidelines.
JUN 25 (WED) 1–5 p.m. (stop by anytime) Canyon Echo Mailing Party. Volunteers save the Chapter hundreds of dollars by
preparing Canyon Echo for mailing. Thank you! The job is easy to learn, and we all have a great time. Any amount of time that you’re
available is appreciated. Contact Jerry Nelson at 602-279-4668 or [email protected] for details.
Spring 2014
Canyon Echo
Grand Canyon Chapter – What’s Going On?
Go With the Flow Benefit Concert
Photo Contest
Arizona’s Wilderness
Show your love of Arizona’s wild places by
entering our annual photo contest! The
winner will receive a bag full of Sierra Club
goodies, plus the honor and recognition of
your fellow members!
Visit http://canyonecho.wikispaces.com/
Photo+Contest for details and to enter.
Border Wildlife Photo Exhibition Coming to Arizona
To celebrate and support the
Arizona Water Sentinels program,
several musicians are donating their
performances. Scheduled performers
include D-Squared, The Strand, Pick
and Holler, and Hannes Kvarran,
plus maybe some friends!
Saturday, April 26
7 p.m.
Fiddler’s Dream Coffeehouse
1702 E. Glendale Ave., Phoenix
Admission by donation of $25
Please come out to this fun event
with some great musicians and support our conservation work here in
The Grand Canyon Chapter wishes to thank Fiddler’s Dream and the
performers for generously donating their time and resources for this
event. Fiddler’s Dream offers a smoke-free, alcohol-free, completely
acoustic musical environment in a small venue. To find out more about
the venue, visit http://fiddlersdream.org.
For more information, please contact Steve Pawlowski at
602-254-9330 or [email protected]
Photo © Krista Schlyer.
Continental Divide is an exhibit of 30 large canvas photo prints that depict the land, wildlife, and
people of the U.S.–Mexico borderlands and the impact that construction of a border wall is having
on them. The images in the exhibit were taken primarily during an expedition with the International
League of Conservation Photographers along the 2000-mile border. The expedition included 13
photographers who documented a diverse range of borderlands flora, fauna, and cultures.
The Continental Divide photo exhibit will be featured at the Olney Gallery at Trinity
Cathedral on 100 W. Roosevelt St. in Phoenix this June. A First Friday artist reception on June
6 will feature author and photographer Krista Schlyer, whose 2013 book, also titled Continental
Divide, won several prestigious awards, including the National Outdoor Book Award.
For more information contact Sandy Bahr at 602-253-8633
or call the Olney Gallery at 623-826-9912.
2 Chapter Announcements
4 Conserve Arizona!
5 Thank You!
6 Superstition Wilderness
7 Wilderness Experiences
8 Mount Nutt Wilderness
9 Connect Youth With Nature
Wilderness Reading List
Interested in learning more about the Wilderness Act and the history of wilderness areas? The following books can get you started.
Frome, Michael. Battle for the Wilderness (Rev. Ed.). Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1997.
Lewis, Michael (Ed.). American Wilderness: A New History. New York: Oxford University Press, 2007.
Nash, Roderick Frazier. Wilderness and the American Mind (4th Ed.). New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2001.
Scott, Doug. The Enduring Wilderness. Golden, CO: Fulcrum Publishing, 2004.
Turner, James Morton. The Promise of Wilderness: American Environmental Politics since 1964. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2012.
10 Bicycles and Wilderness
11 Wolf Advocacy
12 Group Happenings
14 Hikes and Outings
16 Service Outings
Sierra Club
Grand Canyon Chapter
Arizonans Tell State to Conserve Arizona
By Sandy Bahr
Cast of Characters
Meg Weesner
Wilderness Warrior
Legislative District 26 participants and legislators (from left): Barbara Sherman, Representative
Juan Mendez, Darlene Justus, Representative Andrew Sherwood, Michael Weiss, Senator Ed
Ableser, Elizabeth Stewart, Haryaksha Gregor Knauer. Photo by Will Greene.
On February 18th, more than 150 people from 24 legislative districts and 22 organizations participated in Environmental
Day at the Arizona State Capitol. The year’s
theme was “Conserve Arizona – Water,
Wildlife, & Wildlands.”
Volunteer advocates attended committee hearings and caucuses and met directly
with their own legislators about environmental protection, letting legislators know
that Arizonans want wolves recovered, our
rivers flowing, and our state parks funded
and protected. Many people were also there
to encourage legislators to stop getting in the
way of renewable energy and to support solar rooftop and energy efficiency programs.
The majority of Arizona legislators is out
of step with its constituents on these important issues; Arizonans repeatedly and consistently express their support for Conserving
Arizona. That is why it is so important for
legislators to hear more from constituents.
Volunteer advocates asked legislators to
oppose bills that would weaken protections
for critically endangered Mexican wolves
in Arizona; to support reinstating the State
Parks Heritage Fund for parks, historic pres-
ervation, and natural areas and to adequately
fund our State Parks System; and to oppose
bills that prohibit local communities from
implementing efficient and green building
codes and that weaken renewable energy
In addition to meeting with their own
legislators, participants heard from the Honorable Doug Von Gausig, Mayor of Clarkdale, who spoke about “Why do I care about
the Verde River?” They learned about why
this river and others are so important to both
Mayor Von Gausig and people throughout
the state. Several legislators – Senators Steve
Farley and Lynne Pancrazi and Representatives Chad Campbell and Jamescita Peshlakai – also joined participants for other portions of the day. Some legislators presented
and took questions from advocates; others
met with them more informally.
All in all, it was one of the most successful environmental days ever. Sierra Club
thanks all who helped plan, implement, and
participate and really appreciates the legislators who took the time to meet with their
Sandy is the Chapter Director.
Stay Informed!
Learn more about what’s going on at the Arizona Legislature and how you can get involved by signing up for our legislative updates! Sign up at http://bit.ly/signup_email.
Meg grew up in Nashville, Tennessee, and remembers family trips
to the Great Smoky Mountains that
developed her love of hiking and the
outdoors. At Northwestern University,
she became a leader in the Outing Club
and started leading trips for hiking,
canoeing, caving, rock climbing, and
cross-country skiing. Majoring in journalism, she hoped to write for a magazine such as Backpacker or Outside.
Right out of college, Meg got a job
at Glen Canyon National Recreation
Area in northern Arizona. She spent
her weekends visiting parks and public lands on the Colorado Plateau and
decided she wanted to work as a park
Meg Weesner in White Canyon Wilderness.
Photo courtesy of Meg Weesner.
ranger. This inspiration led to additional seasonal jobs at Rocky Mountain National Park and Joshua Tree National Monument
(now a national park). To gain permanent status, she accepted a job editing research papers
for the U.S. Forest Service in Utah and then moved to a public affairs job on a National Forest in eastern Oregon.
To broaden her educational background, Meg obtained a Master’s degree at the University of Idaho, with a focus on wilderness and wild and scenic rivers. By the mid-1980s,
she had received a permanent job with the National Park Service and focused on managing
natural resources in parks. Assignments took her to Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area (Pennsylvania) and New River Gorge National River (West Virginia). She became
Chief of Science and Resources Management at Saguaro National Park in 1991 and held
that position until she retired in 2011.
Meg joined Sierra Club in 1977 and became a life member about a decade later. She
is a member of numerous other environmental groups but particularly enjoys Sierra Club
because of its focus on grassroots activism, outings, and developing environmental leaders.
Since retirement, Meg has been able to take a more active role in conservation organizations.
In addition to her role as chair of the chapter’s Wilderness 50th Anniversary Working Group,
she also serves on the board of the International Ranger Federation, which supports rangers
as front-line environmental defenders around the globe. She has traveled to more than 15
countries to visit parks and to meet with rangers, and she plans to attend the World Parks
Congress in Sydney, Australia, this November.
Meg enjoys living in southern Arizona because of the wonderful opportunities for outdoor recreation. She likes hiking, birding, traveling, reading, swimming, and yoga and admits to being a news junkie. Her brother’s family lives in Tucson, so she enjoys activities with
her teenage niece and nephew, as well as a couple of cousins.
Meg feels that mining, threats to water resources, and the spread of invasive plants are
the most pressing environmental problems in the state. She believes that Sierra Club is well
positioned to work on these issues, as well as wildlife, the border, energy, climate change,
and others. The strength of its membership has made Sierra Club a major influence in this
country; its programs, which turn lovers of the outdoors into advocates and environmental
leaders, will ensure that it retains that leadership position.
Spring 2014
Canyon Echo
Thank You to Our Donors!
The Morning Stars Sing Together (500+)
David Engelman
Roger & Stephanie N. Young
Make the Mountains Glad ($100–499)
Patricia Arnell
Madeleine Ascott
Dr. & Mrs. Robert D. Beren
Marjorie Cunningham
Kevin Dahl
Beth Dutton & David Bush
Nathania Elder
Jay Faulkner
Donald Fausel
Ed Gogek
Kenneth & Diana Gometz
Fred Haggerson
Chris Henderson
Tim Hogan
Thomas Hulen
David & Norma Johnstone
Lois Kelley
S. T. Russell & S. Neeley
Nancy Santori
Beverly Sass
William Thornton
Barbara Warren
Ric Watkins
James M. Zurich
Keep Close to Nature’s Heart ($50–99)
Paula A. Aboud
Steve Arthur
Bryan Bates
Susan Bean
Jean Clark
Mary Ann Cook
Mr. & Mrs. Rudy Dankwort
Andre Dargis
George Doran
John Doty
Gordon Ferguson
Gary & Yvonne Huckleberry
Nina Judge
Jonathan H. Kress
Mr. & Mrs. Ivo Lucchitta
James McNallen
Karen & Cecil Michael
Harry Mitchell
Vivian Ross
Jim Rutherford
Marnie S. Shepperd
Alice & Karl Stambaugh
Dale Turner & Julia Fonseca
Dr. & Mrs. James G. Urban
John Weiss
Vivian Wood
NOTE: This list includes donations received through March 11.
Donations received after that time will appear in the next issue.
Hitched to Everything Else in the
Universe ($1–49)
Roger J. Athey
Al Bellavia
Jim Brower
Don J. Cheek
Robert J. Cox
Jeanne Devine
Terry & Jack Drucker
Allen Dutton
John M. Franklin
Mr. & Mrs. Marlin Fried
Barry & Madeline Friedman
Roxane George
Penelope Graves
Howard Grindlinger
George Horn
Pamela W. Hyde
Carl Jacobs
Ruth E. Jagolinzer
Jules Ketcham
Bernard W. Kobes
Andrew Kuscsik
Pat Lewis
Ottilie R. & J. Boyd Matchett
C. Gene Mccormick
Dotty Meyer
Carroll Munz
Brian Nordstrom
Joan Prefontaine
Karen Rebb
Ron Selig
Mr. & Mrs. Thomas L. Sherman
Nancy Siefer
Eve & Ernest Simon
Leah Sussman
T. J. Wernette & C. Brown
Thank you to Cathy
Gorman & Phil Hedrick
for donating to our Arizona
Water Sentinels Campaign
and to Tamara Bird and Eva
Putzova for donating to our
Campaign to Restore and
Protect Grand Canyon!
Thank you to James O’Sullivan for donating
in memory of Florence Casterlin.
The Grand Canyon Chapter is also thankful for the generous
support from those who chose to remain anonymous.
Photo by Kim Daly.
Tucson Inner City Outings would like to give a special thanks to Summit Hut and
Columbia Company for their generous donation in the form of a grant that will help
us continue to take kids outdoors and expose them to the wonders of nature.
The Sierra Club’s Grand Canyon
Chapter thanks and very much
appreciates the Wilburforce
Foundation and all it does for
our Restore and Protect the
Greater Grand Canyon Ecoregion
project and American Express
for providing matching grants for
the volunteer hours contributed
by American Express employees.
Mil gracias!
Sierra Club
Grand Canyon Chapter
Superstition Wilderness
By Thomas Hulen
One day, around 40 to 45 years ago, I
was introduced to the Superstition Wilderness Area when I arrived near the First Water
Trailhead with my parents and sister. I was
impressed when I read the sign that cars,
motorcycles, and trail bikes were not permitted in the Superstition Wilderness. We were
enjoying a Sunday looking at old mines and
talking about the famous Lost Dutchman
Mine. I relished the stories with the boyish
interest in adventure and buried treasure.
Needless to say, we did not “rediscover” the
Lost Dutchman Mine, but I did discover
that there were people who valued land for
what it is and not what it could be or what
they wanted it to be.
My father explained to me that there
were people who believed it would be a tragic
mistake if we did not set aside land for wildlife and its priceless scenery. It would all be
crowded with buildings, roads, and garbage,
he said. Even though my father would not
have considered himself a conservationist, he
did appreciate the value of public land. He
was the first person to warn me about the
lunacy of the Sagebrush Rebellion.
Since then, I have hiked a few hundred
miles in the Superstition Wilderness Area.
I have explored its canyons, discovered ancient cliff dwellings and rock art, and learned
a great deal about myself.
I am reminded every day of the gift
of wilderness when I see the Superstition
Mountains rising to the east of Tempe where
I live. If I look to the west, I can see the Estrella Mountain Wilderness Area and, on a
really clear day, Table Top Wilderness Area.
This year, the 50th anniversary of the
Wilderness Act, I plan to celebrate by visiting as many wilderness areas as possible;
when appropriate, I will speak up for wilderness and wildlands at every opportunity. It
will be my recognition of those who brought
the Wilderness Act to fruition and my humble gift to the earth’s future inhabitants, all
life forms.
Thom is a member of the Chapter Executive
Committee and is a longtime conservation advocate.
Rogers Canyon, Superstition Wilderness
By Mitch Stevens
Most folks have hopes and dreams,
some more grandiose than others. But few
are fortunate enough to realize all of their
dreams. Elisha Reavis wanted to live off the
land in a beautiful place far away from the
hordes of humanity. He lived out his dream
in a high mountain valley in the Superstitions where he farmed, grazed cattle, and
tended an orchard. Ponderosa pines graced
his ranch, and a beautiful, clear, spring-fed
creek watered the fruit trees he planted. He
died in 1896; his grave site is located in a
place few people will ever see. Thanks to
Randy Weber, a Tucson hiker, historian, and
naturalist, our group was one of the few.
Our objective today was to explore
Rogers Canyon, so we headed west at a trail
junction and hiked into this beautiful canyon. Gradually, the character and look of
the landscape transformed from high desert
grassland to riparian. Huge old sycamore
trees, juniper, oak, and mountain laurel ap-
peared. As we ventured deeper into the thick
of Rogers Canyon, spectacular volcanic rock
formations were the main features. Various
shapes chiseled by the elements resembled
a teapot and Queen Victoria’s crown, and a
huge boulder was perched precariously high
up on the canyon wall.
Finally, we arrived at the end of the
trail, which held a great reward. After a short
climb, the view from a cave looking out
across the canyon was fantastic, a sight to
behold. We retraced our steps and enjoyed
the glowing canyon in late afternoon light.
The long and bumpy drive from the
Rogers Trough Trailhead is almost as striking
as the hike itself. To the west, views of saguaro-studded Byous Butte, especially at sunset,
are gorgeous. Numerous ridges and peaks of
the Superstitions, as well as other sky islands,
are prevalent throughout the journey back
to civilization.
Mitch is an outings leader with the Rincon Group.
Byous Butte, Superstition Wilderness. Photo by Mitch Stevens.
Spring 2014
Canyon Echo
Mt. Wrightson Night
By Michael Smith
I am alone at 9453 feet, on a mountain
top the way I imagine it: a quarter acre, maybe half, no trees, drop-offs up to 1000 feet
on all sides. Above me, swifts are catching
insects, their swept wings making identification easy. I am dehydrated after hiking up
on a hot June day, the 32-ounce drink I had
at the start long gone before I even reached
Josephine Saddle at 7200 feet. I am a vertical mile and a half above Tucson, five miles
from the trailhead.
My thirst doesn’t matter; I am higher
than any other person in southern Arizona,
seeing a wonderful sunset I will never forget,
the reds and oranges stunning. It was worth
hiking up from my Baldy Saddle campsite
to the top. I must leave soon, as it is starting
to get dark, and some of the trail is not safe
in darkness. I will awaken tomorrow, away
from the rush hour traffic of a large city, in
one of the wilderness areas of Arizona, the
trailhead little more than an hour’s drive
from my house. Few ever see this place, the
Mt. Wrightson Wilderness, my favorite spot
in southern Arizona, where I myself am a
visitor and will not long remain.
I have camped here alone in a snowstorm, hearing the snow accumulate and
then slide down the tent, warm inside my
sleeping bag. I have day-hiked up here in
the snow, playing hooky from work, returning to my job that afternoon, completely
soaked, but absolutely happy and thrilled to
be alive. I have hiked up here and down the
other side to Gardner Canyon, then turned
around and came back up and over. I came
up the north side one day and stayed too
long, hiking down in the dark, an owl’s sudden hoot making me almost jump off the
trail. That was a great hike. They all are.
From Baldy Saddle, reached from the
west by 33 switchbacks, I see Green Valley
and the Catalinas north of Tucson. To the
east, I see Sonoita, Sierra Vista, and south
into Mexico. From the top, I see all of these
by just rotating, as is the Earth.
It took a lot of work to get up here,
but that makes wilderness special. I am get-
Looking toward Mt. Wrightson from Baldy Saddle. Photo by dog.breath (Flickr).
ting my reward tonight. I earned this view,
through the thirst and soreness I endured. I
don’t yet know that later tonight, I will hear
a cougar. I need wilderness. I can’t explain it
or put a dollar sign on it, but I need it. Nor
can I prove it, but I suspect others might become happier if they went into the wilder-
ness, even a short distance, where they, too,
would not long remain. They must decide
for themselves. Right now, I must decide to
return to my campsite. The swifts call, still
catching bugs, as I start down the rocky trail.
Mike, now living in Eugene, Oregon, hopes
some day to again see Baldy Saddle.
Hideout Heaven: Arizona’s Santa Teresa Wilderness
By Robert Luce
Our trek through the Santa Teresa Wilderness begins near the “town” of Klondyke,
loops up through the high country, and returns to Klondyke Road roughly 15 miles
east. We are backpacking the Grand Enchantment Trail, a 700-mile-long trail from
Phoenix to Albuquerque.
The Santa Teresa Mountains are one of
Arizona’s famed Sky Islands. The 26,780acre wilderness is a remote, ragged network
of eroded granite mountains with bizarre
rock formations and no real hiking trails, so
much of our route is a cross-country scramble through rough topography.
It’s so quiet out here; I hear a scurrying
sound in the loose rock fifty yards across the
drainage and spot five javalina. Rock wrens
cheerfully call from granite outcrops among
scattered agave, ocotillo, and juniper. Where
the Reef Basin Trail tops out, the snow-covered Galiuro Mountains and Gila Mountains shine in the morning sun. Snow in the
shade on the north-facing slope right beside
City of Rocks in Holdout Canyon, Santa Teresa Wilderness. Photo by Bob Luce.
us is also a reminder of the storm of a few
days ago.
In five miles, we ascended from the
desert scrub (3,400 feet) to pine/oak habi-
tat at Reef Tank (5,200 feet). Along the
way, we passed old roads leading to Grand
Reef Mine, Dog Water Mine, and other
lead and silver mines, all played out decades
ago. From the saddle overlooking Holdout
Canyon, we appreciate the work it took to
get here. Holdout was rumored to be an
outlaw hideout; having explored Hole-inthe-Wall, Wyoming, and other hideouts of
Butch Cassidy and the Wild Bunch, I can
see the resemblance. The patchwork maze
of domes, spires, and gargoyles are hideout
heaven. Holdout Creek provides water and
creek-side sandy camp spots for us just as
they might have for the Clanton Gang a
hundred years ago.
On the next day, we make the dry,
cross-country climb out of Holdout. Thick
stands of wait-a-minute bush block our
route, backward-facing spines grabbing
ahold, scratching and ripping clothes and
backpacks like angry bobcats. At a saddle
we drop into Black Rock Canyon. In late afternoon, along Black Rock Creek, a stream
with a flat, open floodplain, we find a campSee Santa Teresa continued on pg. 10.
Sierra Club
Grand Canyon Chapter
Mount Nutt Wilderness
By Jerry Nelson
Mount Nutt Wilderness is located in
the arid Black Mountains of northwestern
Arizona, southwest of Kingman, and near
the tourist stop of Oatman. It’s not a highlyused and well-known area. You won’t find
managed campgrounds at its border, and
there is only one road to an access point that
can be traveled by passenger car. Not much
more than a mile of officially-designated
trails are within its boundary. Its remote
high point of 5,216 feet gets little notice on
the internet as a climbing destination despite
its unique landscape and what must be an
amazing view from the top. All these are
qualities of a good wilderness.
On a warm night this past January, Jim
Vaaler, David Mowry, and I camped near
a dirt road a mile or so outside the wilderness with the intention of climbing Mt.
Nutt the following day. The night was filled
with sounds of yelping coyotes, braying wild
burros, and the unfortunate distant whirr
of an all-night operation at the Gold Road
Mine, which we had passed on the drive in.
All these were silenced by a sound outdoor
Our plans to reach the summit the next
morning were thwarted by terrain more than
by distance, but the experience, nonetheless,
was memorable. Cottonwood Canyon had a
surprising amount of water flowing from its
springs, making it necessary to climb around
pools at the base of dry waterfalls and to
cross a risky “bridge” made from a section
of abandoned pipe that many years ago had
carried water to a mine. Once we began to
climb in earnest, the loose volcanic pebbles
on the steep mocha-colored mountainsides
doubled the exertion that was required to
continue. As the morning passed and our
legs tired, we gradually realized that our goal
would not be achieved that day. We eventually gave up the journey and made a final
ascent to a saddle, where astounding views
of volcanic ash slopes and lava spires accompanied our lunch. There the summit of Mt.
Nutt taunted us from only a half mile away
horizontally, but still an unreachable 1,300
feet of loose rock and vertical cliffs above us.
We arrived back at camp that evening very
tired but, as always after such trips, with
photos and memories to keep.
Mount Nutt Wilderness has contrasting
management issues. It’s the home of desert
bighorn sheep but also the home of controversial wild burros, descendants of animals
used in mines many years ago. Outside its
western boundary, light pollution from nearby Colorado River communities invades the
skies, and noise pollution from nearby mines
can invade the air. Once inside its deep canyons, however, as John Muir once wrote,
Top: Battleship Mountain. Bottom: Traversing the rugged geology. Photos by Jerry Nelson.
“the galling harness of civilization drops off”
and a visitor’s spirit is refreshed, if only for
a few hours. Remoteness, rugged geology,
challenging ascents, and scenic views make
Mount Nutt, as much as better-known
primitive areas in Arizona, worthy of the
proud designation of wilderness.
Jerry is a Sierra Club volunteer.
Spring 2014
Canyon Echo
Inner City Outings: Connecting Youth with Nature
By Lisa Vaaler
Inner City Outings (ICO) is a Sierra
Club community outreach program that
provides opportunities for urban youth and
adults to explore, enjoy, and protect the
natural world. This program is dedicated to
providing outdoor opportunities to people
who would not otherwise have them, including low-income youth of diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds. ICO is made
up entirely of volunteer leaders who organize
a variety of outdoor adventures, including
hiking, camping, mountain biking, caving,
and service learning for people of all ages and
abilities. Through these outings, participants
are introduced to wilderness, Sierra Club
and its values, and how to tread lightly by
using Leave No Trace ethics.
ICO volunteers work through partnerships with selected agencies and children
from ages 8 to 17. Food and transportation
are provided, and leaders are trained in firstaid, CPR, environmental education, and
youth leadership. We are always looking to
form new partnerships.
In Phoenix, we try to lead monthly outings near the city and in wilderness areas
around the state. Most of our outings consist of hiking, with an emphasis on natural
elements, environmental impacts, plus historical aspects. Recent trips we have led with
youth include to Eagletail Wilderness, South
Mountain, and the Oatman Massacre site.
Phoenix’s ICO program is in constant
need of energetic new volunteers to drive
youth to get active. Many volunteers give
their time, sweat, and brilliance to provide
exciting learning and exploring opportunities for the youth. ICO stays successful by
continuing to attract interested people with
an active concern for our community’s future. Phoenix ICO is in need of volunteers
who are willing to lead hikes and outdoor
activities. If you would like to learn more
about our program and how to volunteer,
we have monthly meetings the first Wednesday of every month at 7 p.m., located at
LUX coffee house at 4402 N Central Ave,
Phoenix, AZ 85012. The light rail stops
right by the coffee house. Please join us to
learn more. Thank you, and hope to see you
out on the trail supporting our youth!
Lisa is the Phoenix ICO Chair.
Get Involved!
Would you like to help introduce youth to nature? To get involved with Phoenix
ICO, contact Lisa Vaaler at 602-468-4158 or [email protected] To get involved
with Tucson ICO, contact Judy Rubin at 520-891-3310 or [email protected]
The Wonderer: A Fable
By Ann McDermott
It is said that there was once a time
when humans lost sight of themselves and
forgot who they were. Day and Night, the
two primary creators, heard the prayers of
those who remembered that skill and were
truly perplexed.
“What are they asking?” said Day. “I
don’t understand what they want.”
“I’m not sure,” answered Night. “Can it
be they can’t see any longer? Are they blind?”
“Maybe that’s it,” said Day, “but how
did that happen? They can create as well
as the rest of creation, so what’s blinding
“Perhaps all they can see is what they
create,” speculated Night. “Might that do
“Not if they look closely enough,” answered Day. “Are they trying not to see?”
“Perhaps they’re just too distracted,”
Night said thoughtfully. “Is there some way
we can help?”
“We have shown them the greatest
wholeness lies in the greatest diversity. The
Photos by Lisa Vaaler.
greatest diversity is in wilderness. The whole
of creation always mirrors the creators. This
is self-evident,” said Day.
“To you, to us, but perhaps not them,”
said Night. “That would be disorientating.”
“Then let’s call to them. Perhaps some
can still hear,” Day proposed.
A bald eagle plunged feet first into the
urban lake, snatching a fish for his nestlings.
He screamed his delight with the successful
hunt and flew away. One child in those clustered on the playground looked up at the
sound and watched the bird depart.
“I wonder,” she said, and walked into
the forest.
Ann is committed to the fable as an art form that
reaches across rational mind limitations.
Sierra Club
Grand Canyon Chapter
Bicycles and the Wilderness Act
By Joe Shannon and Emma Benenati
The Wilderness Act of 1964 states “...
there should be no temporary road, no use
of motor vehicles, motorized equipment
or motorboats, no landing of aircraft, no
other form of mechanical transport....” It is
the elimination of all forms of “mechanical
transport” that has uniformly excluded bicycle travel in designated wilderness areas.
Although the majority of mountain bike
riders understand and respect the Wilderness Act as written, there is a determined effort by the International Mountain Bike Association (IMBA) to advocate for access into
wilderness areas through boundary adjustments. The IMBA is, without question, an
organization funded by the bicycle industry
to promote new “access” to public lands, to
reduce trail closures to mountain bikes, and,
therefore, to sell more bicycles.
The IMBA has done a very good job of
taking on the role of “good guy trail ambassador” through coordinating volunteer trail
building and maintenance. The U.S. Forest
Service (USFS) in Arizona uses its expertise
and efforts as a primary source of “community trail input” and repair to compensate
for its inability to secure needed funds to
hire contractors. For example, the pending
Coconino National Forest Dry Lake Hills/
Mt Elden Recreation Plan is plainly skewed
toward mountain bike travel, which many
perceive as a pay-back to the IMBA and its
members for many weekends of trail work
over the years.
At first glance, you may see this as okay
and not a problem for wilderness areas or
even for USFS management decisions because USFS officials are required to work
with forest user groups. However, exchangSanta Teresa continued from pg. 7.
site. Like real outlaws, we hide our tents in
the brush, leave few tracks or sign, have no
fire, and arrange our camp so we can see a
mile or more of our back trail.
Day 3, our last in the Santa Teresa Wilderness. Black Rock Canyon is suffused
with a magnificent golden light at sunup.
With our long shadows trailing behind, we
execute another off-trail scramble, one nec-
ing public land access for volunteer work is
not a transparent leadership method. Imagine if the mining industry used the same
tactics by having its employees volunteer for
road rehabilitation for access to proposed
claims. Does this mean that over time the
IMBA will achieve its goal of bicycle travel in
federally-designated wilderness areas?
At the state level, IMBA is very active
and good at convincing land managers that
human-powered travel trumps the mechanical aspects of bikes, so bikers are really no
different than hikers. Make no mistake, the
IMBA is a well-funded and trained industry
lobby group that has had success in pushing
for new trails and access throughout western
public land. The under-35 age group constantly demands new and more contrived
trails as it grows bored with established trail
systems. Wilderness areas are typically high
elevation and steep, which suits the current
bicycle industry push for downhill or gravity rider access. These are bikes with long
suspension travel, equal to motorcycles, that
weigh so much they cannot be pedaled uphill.
In celebration of the 50th anniversary
of the Wilderness Act, Sierra Club members
should continue to pressure the USFS to
seek adequate funding for sustainable trails,
to pursue a legal review of trading volunteer
work for public land access, and to remind
land managers that the Wilderness Act
prohibits automobiles, bicycles, and other
mechanized transport.
Learn more about IMBA’s Public Lands
Initiative at https://www.imba.com/pli.
Joe is Chair of the Plateau Group. Emma is a 31year Sierra Club member. Both are avid cyclists.
essary to avoid trespassing on private land.
On the ridge, we meet up with an old pack
trail as it comes up from a ranch house and
heads almost directly south toward Klondyke Road, traversing the shoulder of Cottonwood Mountain, Pinnacle Ridge, Dark
Canyon, Devil’s Hole, and Lower Hideout
beckon. A world of places yet to be explored.
Joe Shannon enjoys a ride on a forest trail (not in wilderness). Photo by Emma Benenati.
The Case for Buying a Duck Stamp
By Michael Smith
Okay, maybe you don’t hunt or fish –
or even like the idea – but you do like the
outdoors. Buying a Duck Stamp is a way to
show this appreciation. Duck Stamps are an
example of a good program with minimal
overhead: 98% of the $15 annual fee goes
to the Migratory Bird Conservation Fund.
Hunters of waterfowl are required to buy
one; those who don’t hunt but who have a
stamp can get into U.S. Fish and Wildlife
Service refuges without paying a fee.
Signed by Republican president Herbert Hoover, with funding approved by
Democrat Franklin Roosevelt five years later,
the Duck Stamp is one of those wonderful
American ideas in which people worked together – people with different ideas, those
who hunt and those who don’t. Both groups
share a deep love for waterfowl and places
where waterfowl congregate, areas so important to these species and to the purification
of aquifers, but areas that are also in great
danger of being lost.
I’ve been buying a stamp for only 10
years, far too late, I know, but while I can’t
turn back the clock, I can control the future. Please control your future and that of
our endangered wetlands. Tell your hunter
friends that you have one. Be proud to show
it. They will be impressed that you feel so
strongly about wetlands that you plunked
down $15, even if you don’t hunt. Tell them
you like free passes to these areas. They are
your lands.
Mike is an active Sierra Club member.
Learn More!
Learn more about and buy Duck Stamps at http://www.duckstamp.com. If you
are an artist, consider entering the Duck Stamp artwork competition, the only federally-legislated art competition in the country. Winning this contest is a big deal.
Bob is a writer and nature photographer.
Spring 2014
Canyon Echo
Wolf Advocacy – Not So Simple But Worth the Effort
By Kathy Ann Walsh
Keystone predators, trophic cascades,
grazing allotments, depredations – just a few
of the many terms I have encountered as a
novice advocate for wolves. It continues to
be a complex and divisive topic, to say the
The federal proposal to delist the gray
wolf from the Endangered Species Act (ESA)
split Americans primarily into two factions –
wolf advocates urging continued protection
and citing the benefits wolves bring to ecosystems, fearing their decimation once again,
versus livestock owners fearing depredations
and hunters fearing competition for prey.
More than enough fear to go around.
In the six states where protection has
been removed, 2,600 wolves have been
killed via hunting over the last two years, a
harbinger of the future if ESA protection is
removed entirely. Idaho hired a professional
hunter/trapper intending to eliminate 60%
of the wolves in the Frank Church Wilderness. This was temporarily halted by an
emergency motion filed by a coalition of
conservation groups.
The announced results of a peer review
performed by scientists at the behest of the
federal government stated that the science
used to support the delisting proposal was industry in the West would probably not be
faulty. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service viable. Although some livestock owners have
opened another 45-day public comment pe- learned to coexist with wolves, the majority
call for removal of wolves, which truly beriod, which ended on March 27.
So, do wolves
long in the wilderness, so that cattle,
really belong in
People were silent
which clearly don’t
our public wilderness areas, and
belong, can continue
Then many found their voices
to degrade the land.
how do they serve
Now the wild wolves howl
a healthy ecosysHere in the
–Sandy Bahr
tem? In Yellowstone, wolves were
Mexican gray wolf
(or lobo) may rerestored in 1995
after a 70-year absence. The elk population ceive ESA protection as a separate subspehas been halved, bringing back over-browsed cies. Although helpful, the Arizona Legaspen, willows, and cottonwoods, which in
turn stabilize streams and provide bird habitat. Reduced coyote populations assisted in
resurgence of pronghorn. Fish, other aquatic
species, and beavers are thriving in narrower,
colder, deeper streams. This top-down effect
of restoring a keystone predator is known as
a trophic cascade, a complex interweaving of
plant, water, and animal life.
Conversely, our public lands suffer from
pollution and overgrazing by cattle whose
owners enjoy the benefits of antiquated grazing allotments, without which the ranching
islature launched bills SB1211, SB1212,
and SCR1006, which make it much easier
to kill wolves, set aside $250,000 to legally
battle future reintroductions, and promote
anti-wolf propaganda. At the time of writing
this article, these bills have passed the Senate
with the House vote looming.
To put the issue in perspective, a quote
from “The Daily Coyote” by Shreve Stockton: “We romanticize that wild animals enjoy an idyllic life of freedom, when really,
they are fighting to survive, for food and
shelter and safety and against the infringements of man.”
Kathy is a wilderness volunteer and wolf advocate.
Lessons from Pete Seeger’s Life
By Gary Beverly
I’m sure that you noted the passing of
Pete Seeger at 94 years of age in January.
The legacy of Pete Seeger has so much
to teach us. I always “liked” him, but I didn’t
realize the length, depth, breadth, and value
of his contributions to our society. I’m embarrassed to admit that his death taught me
more than his life – I guess I had my head in
the sand on this one.
He was an amazing scholar of folk music, but, more importantly, he used music as
a tool of social change. For 70 years, Seeger
had a huge influence on every major social
issue in America: workers rights, fair pay,
free speech, anti-nuclear, women’s rights, racial equality, civil rights, voting rights, peace
movement, Vietnam war opposition, and
environmental protection (especially the
Hudson River).
During Joe McCarthy’s 1950s anticommunist witch-hunt, Pete refused to
answer questions, was blacklisted, and was
sentenced to prison. In spite of the blacklist,
he founded the Weavers, a wildly successful
folk group with many hit songs in the ’50s.
Seeger, a contemporary of Woody
Guthrie, wrote or popularized some of the
most moving and memorable activist ballads
of our time: “Turn, Turn, Turn,” “We Shall
Overcome,” “Where Have All the Flowers
Gone,” “If I Had a Hammer,” “Waist Deep
in the Big Muddy,” and many others. His
music and voice renewed the spirit and resolve of activists across the land while inspiring Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, and other folk
Today, as we work to clean our air and
water and to preserve our wildlife and public
Mexican gray wolf howling. Photo courtesy of Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center.
lands, we battle powerful corporate forces.
It can sometimes feel hopeless. But Seeger
was an incurable optimist, urging activists
to keep at it, even when success seemed impossible. Seeger believed in persistence. Paraphrasing Pete: You never know when something you said, someone you talked to, will
change them many years later. Keep at it.
Pete asks us to imagine a teeter-totter
that has a basket on each end. One basket
is loaded with heavy rocks. The other basket
is empty. The heavy end, representing those
that would destroy our quality of life, is rooted in the status quo. And we are working to
change the balance – trying to make the
world right again and to create a sustainable
future – by using a teaspoon to trickle sand
into the empty basket. One spoonful at a
time; the rocks are laughing at us. But, if we
get enough people with enough teaspoons,
we will fill up that basket. At the tipping
point, the teeter-totter begins to move, and
suddenly tips to our side. And then everyone
else looks up wondering, “What? How did
that happen?”
Pete called this “horizontal power.” That
is his legacy to us, the people.
To learn more about Pete Seeger
and to see a remembrance of his life, visit
Gary is Chair of the Yavapai Group.
Sierra Club
Grand Canyon Chapter
Happenings Around the State
Six groups make up the Grand Canyon Chapter. All the events and meetings listed below are open to members interested in learning more about the Sierra Club. You can
find out more at our website: http://arizona.sierraclub.org/meetings_events.asp. Schedules are subject to change.
(x) Group ExCom members
Rincon Group (Tucson)
Palo Verde Group (Phoenix)
Michael Brady (x)
Fareed Abou-Haidar (x)
Jerry Nelson (x)
Blair McLaughlin (x)
Don Steuter (x)
Jim Vaaler (x)
Lisa Vaaler
Ariel Lebarron (x)
David McCaleb (x)
Natalie Melkonoff (x)
Inner City Outings:
Ex-Com (At-Large):
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
602-840-7655 [email protected]
[email protected]
MAY 6, JUN 3 (TUE) 6:30 p.m. Conservation Committee meetings. Contact Don Steuter.
MAY 8, JUN 12 (THU) 6:30 p.m. Executive Committee meetings. Contact Mike Brady.
Meetings are held in the 2nd floor conference room in the SE corner of the Quality Inn, 202
E. McDowell Rd., Phoenix.
APR 17, MAY 15, JUN 19 (THU) 6:30 p.m. Free monthly programs. The Palo Verde Group
offers monthly programs on the third Thursday of each month from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the
Quality Inn Garden Room, 202 E. McDowell Rd., Phoenix. Monthly programs are open to the
public. Visit http://PaloVerdeGroup.org or call 480-990-9165 for more information.
Saguaro Group (North Maricopa County)
Service Outings:
Bev Full (x)
Dianne Leis (x)
Lynne Cockrum-Murphy (x)
Urb Weidner (x)
Peter Weinelt (x)
Doug Murphy (x)
Jim Wilkey
Bob Moore (x)
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
For information on any event, contact Bev Full.
APR 19 (SAT) 8 a.m. Breakfast discussion. Join us at Songbird’s Nest Café, 6033 E. Cave
Creek Rd. Our guest, Meg Weesner, will talk about wilderness and its role and history in
Arizona. Arizona has 90 wilderness areas covering 4.5 million acres of federal land. It is one of
only five states that have wilderness areas managed by all four federal wilderness agencies.
During 2014, we are celebrating the 50th anniversary of passage of the Wilderness Act,
and Meg will describe some of the activities that will be held and how Sierra Club members
can get involved. Meg is a 35-year life member of Sierra Club. She has been serving as the
chapter’s Wilderness 50th Anniversary Coordinator since early 2013, and she is retired from
a 34-year career in the National Park Service. To be followed by a short hike at 9 a.m.
MAY 15 (THU) 5:30 p.m. Executive Committee meeting/potluck. Located at Urb Weidner’s
home. All interested members are invited to participate.
Inner City Outings:
Ex-Com (At-Large):
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
APR 24, MAY 22, JUN 26 (THU) Conservation Committee (6 p.m.) and Executive Committee
(7:15 p.m.) meetings. The meetings are open to the public. Sierra Club members, in
particular, are urged to attend and to participate. Hope you see you there! Located in the first
floor conference room of the Historic YWCA, 738 N. Fifth Ave., Tucson.
The following programs are located at SEIU, 1600 N. Tucson Blvd., Tucson. Free and open
to the public. For more information, contact Keith Bagwell.
APR 10 (THU) 7 p.m. Seeking Action on Global Climate Change. Since the early 1990s,
the United Nations, under its Framework Convention for Climate Change, has sought global
collective action on climate change. Sierra Club and its youth chapter, Sierra Student
Coalition, have sent a 20-member delegation each year to try to persuade U.S. negotiators to
take bold action to reduce global climate disruption. Rincon Group Membership Chair Natalie
Lucas has participated on this delegation for several years, this year in Warsaw, Poland. She
gives a brief history of the talks, tells us where they stand, and describes the Sierra Club
strategy to move us forward in a positive fashion. MAY 8 (THU) 7 p.m. Energy Issues from Fukushima to Tucson. Rincon Group Energy Chair
Russell Lowes fills us in on today’s major energy issues – international, national, and local.
He answers these questions: Does Japan have Fukushima under control? What is the status
of solar, wind, nuclear, and coal energy in Germany and in other leading renewables nations?
What is fracking, and what is its impact on climate change? What is going on in Arizona’s
solar industry? Does it still make sense to go solar after Arizona politicians’ anti-solar assault?
What is the status of Tucson’s coal/gas power plant? What, individually and collectively, can
we do to move from fossil fuels to renewables?
JUN 12 (THU) 7 p.m. Wilderness in Arizona. Meg Weesner tells us about wilderness and its
role and history in Arizona, which has 90 designated wilderness areas covering 4.5 million
acres of federal land. It is one of only five states with wilderness areas that all four federal
land agencies manage. This year, we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the 1964 Wilderness
Act. Meg describes some activities that are part of the celebration and how Sierra Club
members can get involved. Meg, a 35-year life member of Sierra Club, has been serving as
the Grand Canyon Chapter’s Wilderness 50th Anniversary Coordinator since early 2013. She
is retired from a 34-year National Park Service career.
Canyon Echo encourages contributors to use Creative Commons licensing.
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://
creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.5 or send a letter to Creative
Commons, 543 Howard Street, 5th Floor, San Francisco, California 94105.
MAY 17 (SAT) 8 a.m. Breakfast discussion. Join us at Songbird’s Nest in Cave Creek. A
member of the Raptor Rescue Foundation will present a short program and will bring a bird
or two.
JUN 21 (SAT) Wildlife rehabilitation center tour. Meet at Southwest Wildlife Conservation
Center to view native animals being cared for. Bring a sack lunch to enjoy after the tour.
Randy Serraglio (x)
Keith Bagwell (x)
Roy Emrick (x)
Ken Bierman
Russell Lowes (x)
Mitch Stevens
Judy Rubin
Lee Oler
Natalie Lucas (x)
Michelle Crow (x)
Carl Kanun (x)
All other contributions, including photos, cartoons, and written work, fall under
standard copyright restrictions.
Spring 2014
Canyon Echo
Plateau Group (Flagstaff)
Keep Up to Date with Our Chapter!
Ex-Com (At-Large):
Joe Shannon (x)
Sienna Chapman (x)
Sarah Johnson (x)
Sharon Galbreath
Rick Resnick
Heath Emerson (x)
Dick Hingson (x)
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
For information about activities in the Flagstaff area, contact Joe Shannon.
Are you into social networking? So are we!
Chapter page – http://bit.ly/gcc_fb
Arizona Water Sentinels page – http://bit.ly/azsentinels_fb
Borderlands Campaign page – http://bit.ly/border_fb
Energy – http://bit.ly/cleanenergy_fb
Grand Canyon Campaign page – http://bit.ly/gccampaign_fb
Sedona/Verde Valley Group
Ex-Com (At-Large):
Brian Myers (x)
Anne Crosman (x)
Carole Piszczek-Sheffield (x)
Margaret Anderson
Tina Choate (x)
Angela Lefevre
Duane Edwards
John Sheffield
Carol Grieshaber (x)
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
928-204-1517 [email protected]
928-592-9222 [email protected]
For information about activities in the Sedona/Verde Valley area, contact Brian Myers.
Sandy Bahr – https://twitter.com/SLBahr
Borderlands Campaign – https://twitter.com/SC_Borderlands
Grand Canyon Campaign – https://twitter.com/SC_GrandCanyon
Chapter – http://bit.ly/gcc_meetup
Sign up for monthly emails at http://bit.ly/signup_email.
Wilderness continued from pg. 1.
Yavapai Group (Prescott)
Ex-Com (At-Large):
Gary Beverly (x)
Tom Slaback (x)
Joe Zarnoch (x)
Robby Alley (x)
Bart Brush (x)
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
For information about activities in the Prescott area, contact Gary Beverly.
Classified Ads
(To inquire about advertising, contact 602-253-9140 or [email protected])
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In late 1976, portions of Chiricahua
National Monument and what was then Saguaro National Monument (now a national
park) were added. The Pusch Ridge Wilderness in the Coronado NF was designated
early in 1978, and, in November of that year,
the huge National Parks and Recreation Act
of 1978 designated most of Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument as wilderness.
These laws, however, merely set the
stage for the larger and more comprehensive
wilderness laws that were to come. Dedicated members of Sierra Club and other
conservation organizations worked tirelessly,
and, in August 1984, the Arizona Wilderness Act was passed. It designated more than
one million additional acres of wilderness
in Arizona, most of which was on national
forest land. It also designated the first nine
wilderness areas on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands in the state – including
Aravaipa Canyon in the southeast and Paria
Canyon-Vermillion Cliffs on the Plateau.
Then, late in 1990, the number and
acreage of wilderness areas in Arizona more
than doubled. The Arizona Desert Wilderness Act was the culmination of almost 20
years of work by local conservationists to
protect roadless areas on BLM lands and
wildlife refuges. The bill designated 38 new
BLM wilderness areas and additions to Aravaipa Canyon Wilderness. It also designated
the largest wilderness in Arizona – Cabeza
Prieta – and areas on three other wildlife refuges.
Hundreds of conservation activists,
many of them with Sierra Club, deserve
thanks for these designations. In Congress,
Morris K. Udall, Jim McNulty, Dennis
DeConcini, Barry Goldwater, and John McCain were the leaders whose work resulted
in these areas being protected as wilderness
Is Arizona’s wilderness system complete?
Not at all. Stay tuned for our next issue to
learn about potential additions to wilderness
in Arizona.
Additional information about Arizona
wilderness areas can be found http://
www.wilderness.net. Information about
50th anniversary events is posted at http://
www.azwild50th.org and http://www.
Meg chairs the chapter’s Wilderness 50th
Anniversary Working Group.
Sierra Club
Grand Canyon Chapter
Explore and Enjoy Arizona
For up-to-date information about outings, visit http://arizona.sierraclub.org/outings.asp.
APR 5 (SAT) “C” Upper Verde River Wildlife
Area (3 mi., 300’ EC OW). After eagle-spotting at Del Rio Springs, we’ll hike down a trail
to the Verde River, where hikers can choose
a) to hike 2 mi. to the confluence with Granite Creek or b) to cross the river and explore
sights on the rim. Either way, we’ll find beaver dams, wildlife, and stories about the
river. Bring your camera. We’ll learn about
the natural history of and the conservation
issues surrounding the Verde River. Reservation required; 15-hiker limit. Contact Chuck
Dorsey at [email protected] (preferred) or 503-686-4274. Prescott
APR 5 (SAT) “B” Bronco Ridge–Bronco
Creek (11 mi., >800’ EC). This partially exploratory on- and off-trail ridge trek will take
us into the New River Mountains near Seven
Springs. We’ll begin at Bronco Trailhead but
head northward off-trail along a prominent
ridge. Eventually we’ll descend to Cottonwood Trail and follow it back to Bronco Trail,
then return to our cars. Expect abundant
up- and downhill travel, steep slopes, spiny
plants, spectacular vistas, and untold adventure. Drive 40 mi. from Scottsdale. Call Ken
McGinty at 602-265-2854. Phoenix
APR 9 (WED) “C” Brins Mesa Trail
in the Red Rock Wilderness (6
mi. RT, 1000’ EC). Carpool to the
trailhead a few mi. north of Sedona
off Hwy 89A for this very nice hike.
Bring water and snacks. Contact Bev Full at
480-221-2554 or [email protected] Phoenix
APR 12 (SAT) “C+” ICO (Inner City
Outings) Sierra Anchas Reynolds
Creek (6–7 mi. RT, 1200’ EC).
Come enjoy this great wilderness
area with kids. We will be hiking
Reynolds Creek Trail in the beautiful Sierra
Ancha Wilderness. Spend the day with kids
enjoying the breathtaking views! Contact
Lisa Vaaler at 602-468-4158 or [email protected]
gmail.com. Phoenix
APR 12 (SAT) “A” Miller Peak
– Miller Peak Wilderness (7.4
mi. RT, 3800’ EC). Miller Peak, at
9470’, is the highest mountain in
the Huachuca Mountains and is located 4 mi. north of the U.S.–Mexico border.
We will hike Lutz Canyon Trail and then Crest
Trail to the summit. Along the trail we will see
Celebrate Wilderness!
Red Rock-Secret Mountain Wilderness. Photo by Darrell Foster.
Throughout 2014, outings leaders will be commemorating the
50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act by leading hikes and other
trips to Arizona’s 90 wilderness areas. Help us celebrate by joining
one of these outings! Look for this logo for a wilderness outing.
remnants of 100-year-old mining operations
and equipment. Be prepared for a stiff climb
as we ascend to the peak. This hike will be
limited to those in excellent physical condition. Contact Donald Smith at 520-5919938 or [email protected] Tucson
APR 12 (SAT) “C” Saguaro NP
Wilderness (East): Bridal Wreath
Falls (6 mi. RT, 1100’ EC). We will
go up Douglas Springs Trail to Bridal Wreath Falls and will discuss the
Wilderness Act and national parks. Limit 18.
Contact Meg Weesner at 520-290-1723 or
[email protected] Tucson
APR 13 (SUN) “C” Thunderbird Park Sunset Hike (3.5 mi., 500’ EC). We’ll travel the
Cholla Loop and part of Coach Whip Trail.
This hike loops around and then up the top
of a hill on the east side of the park. The last
2 mi. is a gradual downhill and offers nice elevated sunset views of much of the west valley. Contact Pete Weinelt at 623-388-2209
or [email protected] Phoenix
APR 13 (SUN) “C” Honey Bee Canyon Nature and Photography Hike (2–3 mi., 100’
EC). This will be an easy hike focusing on
wildlife and bird viewing opportunities. Bring
an interest in learning about desert ecology.
Basic desert plant, bird, and wildlife identification included, so don’t expect a highspeed hike. Photography is encouraged.
Families with quiet, well-behaved children
over 10 are welcome; please be sure that
your child can hike the distance. Limit 12.
Contact Beth Ann Krueger at 520-405-5470
or [email protected] Tucson
APR 13 (SAT) “B+” Cottonwood Mountain
(6–7 mi., 1760’ EC). This exploratory hike
in Tonto Basin south of Gisela will take us
across a riparian area and along ridges to
the 4497’ summit of Cottonwood Mountain.
Expect fine views, steep and slippery slopes,
brushy and spiny vegetation (leather gloves
recommended), and possibly wet feet. Drive
70 mi. from Scottsdale. Call Ken McGinty at
602-265-2854. Phoenix
APR 19 (SAT) “C” Upper Verde River Wildlife Area (3 mi., 300’ EC OW). See description of April 5 outing. Reservation required;
15-hiker limit. Contact Gary Beverly at [email protected] (preferred) or 928-6362638. Prescott
APR 20 (SAT) “B+” Bronco Butte (10 mi.,
1200’ EC). On this trek near Cave Creek, we’ll
follow a ridge and bag several high points
until we reach the 4800’ summit of Bronco
Butte. Our return route will be equally interesting. Total gain and loss will exceed 1200’.
Expect truculent vegetation, steep and slippery slopes, up- and downhill travel aplenty,
and other tribulations. Leather gloves recommended. Drive 35 mi. from Scottsdale. Call
Ken McGinty at 602-256-2854. Phoenix
APR 25–27 (FRI–SUN) “B” Mt.
Graham Backpack. Day one, we
will hike 4–5 mi. on Ash Creek Trail
(4400’) to Oak Flat (6300’) or to
the 7000’ level. Day two will take
us to the “cat walk” at 8300’, then 6 mi. to
the “Horse Camp” on Shingle Mill Trail at
6000’. The final day, we will walk 6 mi. on
Shingle Mill Trail, ending at 3600’. Ash Creek
Trail features waterfalls and a beautiful riparian area. Shingle Mill Canyon is wide open
with expansive views. We will talk about the
wilderness potential for area. Contact Jim
Vaaler at 602-553-8208 or [email protected]
com. Phoenix
APR 25–30 (FRI–WED) “D”
Canoe/Kayak the Green River
through Labyrinth Canyon. This
area is designated “wilderness
study” and is currently threatened
by potential mining. Camp 4 nights along
the river with awesome views. Carpool from
Phoenix to Moab to group camp on Friday.
We will be inviting members of the local
Southwest Utah Wilderness Alliance to talk
about their preservation efforts. Cost: $195,
includes the group camp, shuttles, canoe
rental equipment, and the food while on the
river. Contact Bev Full at 480-221-2554 or
[email protected] Phoenix
APR 26 (SAT) “B” Sycamore
Creek Wilderness to Railroad
Draw (6 mi., 300’ EC OW). We’ll
begin at Sycamore Wilderness
Trailhead but will quickly detour
away from other hikers. When we reach Sycamore Creek, we’ll hike down to the Verde
River, then up river 3 mi. through the riparian
forest, pausing for outstanding views of the
red rock Verde Canyon and searching for osprey, bald eagle, black hawk, and great blue
heron. There is no trail, but the walking is
easy. Occasional shallow wading is required.
Reservation required; 12-hiker limit. Contact
Spring 2014
Canyon Echo
Explore and Enjoy Arizona
For up-to-date information about outings, visit http://arizona.sierraclub.org/outings.asp.
Gary Beverly at [email protected] (preferred) or 928-636-2638. Prescott
APR 26 (SAT) “B” Salome Jug –
Salome Wilderness (6 mi. RT).
Salome Creek is a major drainage
for the Sierra Ancha Mountains;
the Jug is the narrow section before Roosevelt Lake. This technical hike in
a water-filled canyon cut from pink granite
is for beginner to intermediate canyoneering
enthusiasts. There is a considerable amount
of wading and swimming; all participants
must be experienced at scrambling and
rappelling. Everyone will provide their own
gear, such as harness, descending device,
carabineers, helmets, and slings. We’ll discuss the amazing geology of this canyon.
Contact Mitch Stevens at 520-991-1199 or
[email protected] Tucson
APR 26 (SAT) “B” Maverick Butte (7 mi.,
1200’ EC). This peakbag will take us to the
4870’-high summit of Maverick Butte in the
New River Mountains near Seven Springs.
We will mostly follow a jeep trail, but the final
mile of the climb will be off-trail with steep
and rocky slopes and punishing vegetation.
The views of the Verde Valley and surrounding mountains are spectacular. Drive 45 mi.
from Scottsdale. Call Ken McGinty at 602265-2854. Phoenix
MAY 3 (SAT) “B” Elephant Head (6.2 mi RT,
1053’ EC, 2343’ accumulated EC). Elephant
Head (5607’) is a prominent natural landmark in Santa Cruz Valley on the west side
of the Santa Rita mountain range. Climbing
this steep 1000’ monolith will require some
class-3 off-trail scrambling and a class-4
move near the summit. The summit affords
magnificent views of the Santa Cruz Valley,
Arivaca, Tubac, and Baboquivari Peak. This
hike will be limited to those with experience
in off-trail hiking and in good physical condition. Contact Donald Smith at 520-5919938 or [email protected] Tucson
MAY 3 (SAT) “C” Eagletail Mountains Wilderness (7 mi. RT). The
97,880-acre Eagletail Mountains
Wilderness was created as part of
the Arizona Desert Wilderness Act
of 1990 and contains the 15 mi. of the Eagletail Mountains and Courthouse Rock. We
will hike Ben Avery Trail and, along the way,
will learn more about this special wilderness,
its plants and animals, and the people who
helped it gain wilderness protection. Contact Sandy Bahr at 602-253-8633 or sandy.
[email protected] Phoenix
MAY 3 (SAT) “B+” Peak 5630 (9 mi., 1600’
EC). Northeast of Superior, several peaks exceeding 5000’ in elevation overlook Queen
Creek Canyon. The highest of these is 5630’
but is unnamed. This hike will take us up a
ridge to the summit, following a steep, rocky,
and brushy route. Views are superb. Our return trip will mostly follow dirt roads. Drive 70
mi. from Tempe. Call Ken McGinty at 602265-2854. Phoenix
MAY 4 (SUN) “C” Chiricahua National Monument Wilderness:
Heart of Rocks and Rhyolite
Canyon (7 mi., 1500’ EC). This is
a one-way hike, ending lower than
we started, but there are some uphill sections. We will take at least two cars to do the
shuttle. The views are stunning, and during
a lunch break we will discuss how historical
resources in wilderness are managed. Limit
12. Contact Meg Weesner at 520-290-1723
or [email protected] Tucson
MAY 10 (SAT) “C” ICO (Inner City Outings)
Red Mountain Flagstaff. Come enjoy this
Cinder Cone estimated to be over one million years old. Hiking with kids as we travel
into the heart of this breached-out cone, with
dramatic changes in soil and rock features!
Truly a unique geological formation! Contact
Lisa Vaaler at 602-468-4158 or [email protected]
gmail.com. Phoenix
MAY 10 (SAT) “C-” Lake Pleasant Hike, Picnic, and Swim. We’ll hike Pipeline Canyon
Trail (3.8 mi. RT, 250’ EC), then we’ll have
a picnic lunch (bring your own). After lunch,
we’ll head for the visitors center and do the
short Roadrunner Trail (1.2 mi. RT) on the
lake’s shore by the dam. We can do some
swimming from Roadrunner Trail. You’re
welcome to do some or all of this. Contact
Pete Weinelt at 623-388-2209 or [email protected]
yahoo.com. Phoenix
MAY 17 (SAT) “B” Apache Creek Wilderness (7 mi. RT, 500’ EC). Apache Creek is
one of the least visited wilderness areas on
the Prescott National Forest and offers beau-
tiful vistas, remote quiet, and abundant wildlife. Elevations are around
5400’, and water is perennial in
the creek. Drive time from Prescott
is approximately 75 minutes, and
roads are suitable for passenger cars. Camping is available at dispersed campsites. Reservation required; 5-hiker limit. Contact Gary
Beverly at [email protected] (preferred)
or 928-636-2638. Prescott
MAY 18–19 (SUN–MON) “C”
Strawberry Crater Wilderness (4
mi. RT, 800’ EC). Hike from Painted
Desert Vista into Strawberry Crater
Wilderness. This outing is part of
an overnight camp at O’Leary Group Campground by Sunset Crater National Monument. Cost: $20, includes one dinner, one
breakfast, and campground fees. Contact
Pete Weinelt at 623-388-2209 or [email protected]
yahoo.com or Bev Full at 480-221-2554 or
[email protected] Phoenix
MAY 24 (SAT) “B” Muldoon Potential Wilderness Area (4 mi. OW,
300’ EC). Join us for an off-trail adventure in a wild and beautiful section of the upper Verde River that
lies within this Potential Wilderness Area.
From the trailhead on the canyon rim, we’ll
hike down 300’ for 0.5 mi. to the end of the
trail at the river. From here, there is no trail
– just a very remote and beautiful canyon.
We’ll wade across the river (knee deep) a few
times to explore interesting sights. Reservation required; 10-hiker limit. Contact Gary
Beverly at [email protected] (preferred)
or 928-636-2638. Prescott
MAY 31 (SAT) “C” Upper Verde River Wildlife Area (3 mi. OW, 300’ EC). See description of April 5 outing. Pre-reservation required; 15-hiker limit. Contact Chuck Dorsey
at [email protected] (preferred)
or 503-686-4274. Prescott
JUN 6–8 (FRI–SUN) Navajo National Monument Camp (5 mi. RT, 700’ EC). Two nights
group camping and guided tour hike of the
ruins at Navajo National Monument. The
monument is at 7300’ elevation. Cost: $40,
includes 2 dinners, 2 breakfasts, and lunch
fixings at the campground. Optional side
trip to Antelope Canyon on Sunday. Contact
Pete Weinelt at 623-388-2209 or [email protected]
yahoo.com. Phoenix
JUN 7 (SAT) “B” Bear Siding to Perkinsville
Bridge (7 mi., 100’ EC). After shuttling vehicles (2WD, 12 mi.), we’ll bushwhack down
the Verde River through a very pretty and
wild part. There is no trail; be prepared to
push through brush and wade the river. This
See Outings continued on pg. 16.
Hiking Guidelines
The Sierra Club is a nationwide organization with active local outings for members and non-members.
Please join us as we make friends and explore life-enriching interests. Simply find an outing by date
and contact the leader for directions, reservations, time, and additional information. RESTRICTIONS: NO
FIREARMS, RADIOS, OR PETS (unless noted otherwise). Outings are by reservation. Call early (group limit
20). Each hike is rated for degree of difficulty and risk by the leader.
“A” “B” “C” “D” >16 miles or > 3,000 ft. elevation change (EC)
8–16 miles and 1,500–3,000 ft. EC
3–8 miles, 500–1,500 ft. EC
<3 miles and 500 ft. EC
Round Trip
One Way
The trip leader has absolute authority to question trip participants as to their equipment, conditioning,
and experience before and during the trip. All participants on Sierra Club outings are required to sign a
standard liability waiver. If you would like to read the liability waiver before you choose to participate in
an outing, please go to http://www.sierraclub.org/outings/chapter/forms or contact the National Outings Dept. at 415-977-5528 for a printed version. Sierra Club liability covers leaders only. Each person
is responsible for his/her own first aid equipment. If you are injured, notify the leader immediately. If you
leave the trip, with our without the leader’s permission, you are considered to be on your own until you
rejoin the group. Hikers are encouraged to carpool and share the driver’s fuel expense. Donations are accepted from all participants at $1 (member) and $3 (nonmember). Money is collected by the leader and
deposited with the group treasurer. For more information, contact Jim Vaaler at 602-553-8208. Hikes
and outings are also listed online and in the Sierra Singles newsletters. CST 2087766-40. Registration as
a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California.
Sierra Club
Grand Canyon Chapter
Sierra Service Opportunities
Get involved and make a difference! Join us for these exciting service outings!
Counting Ferrets
Friday–Saturday, April 18–19 and/or Saturday–Sunday, April 19–20
Contact: Carole Piszczek-Sheffield, [email protected]
Join us as we help the Arizona Game and Fish Department monitor endangered black-footed
ferrets! The black-footed ferret is the only ferret native to North America. After facing nearextinction, this species has been reintroduced in many areas through its historical range,
including in Arizona. Volunteers are needed to help spotlight from dusk until dawn (9 p.m. to
6 a.m.) in the relocation site just west of Seligman.
Granite Creek Clean-Up
Saturday, April 19
Contact: Steve Pawlowski, 602-254-9330, [email protected]
We will be teaming up with Prescott Creeks for the annual Granite Creek Clean-Up. This
annual event has removed 36 tons of trash from area creeks, lakes, and trails since 2007.
This year, we expect to cover more miles and to pull out even more trash, making the Prescott
area a more beautiful and safe place for everyone to enjoy. T-shirt and refreshments provided.
Rio Salado Habitat Restoration
An endangered black-footed ferret in the spotlight. Photo courtesy of USFWS Mountain Prairie.
Water Sentinels Monitoring
San Pedro River: Thursday, April 10, May 22, June 12
Verde River: Saturday, May 17 and June 14
Contact: Steve Pawlowski, 602-254-9330, [email protected]
Get your feet muddy and your hands wet with the Arizona Water Sentinels! These are great
opportunities to help protect our important rivers. Volunteers are needed to take water
samples and to make field observations. A group also monitors shallow groundwater levels
in wells in the Murray Springs Clovis Site near Sierra Vista. These data help track impacts to
the rivers and to advocate for their protection. What could be better than spending a day in
gorgeous scenery while working to make a difference?
Outings continued from pg. 15.
will be a long day, but there is outstanding
scenery, photography, and other remarkable
features. Frequent shallow wading required.
Bring your camera. We’ll learn about the
natural history of and conservation issues
surrounding the Verde River. Reservation required; 12-hiker limit. Contact Chuck Dorsey
at [email protected] (preferred)
or 503-686-4274. Prescott
JUN 14 (SAT) “C” Woodchute Wilderness Father’s Day Hike (4 mi.
OW, 600’ EC). Bring your kids (we’ll
have some learning activities for
them). And Mom! We will walk a
good trail into Woodchute Wilderness to the
top of Woodchute Mountain for views of the
entire Verde Valley, Sycamore Canyon, San
Francisco Peaks, and Bill Williams Mt. Reservation required; 15-hiker limit. Contact Gary
Beverly at [email protected] (preferred)
or 928-636-2638. Prescott
JUN 14 (SAT) “B” Miller Peak
Wilderness: Ramsey Vista Camp
to Miller Peak (10 mi. RT, 2400’
EC). Our route includes a section of
the Arizona Trail and some ups and
downs along the way. During a lunch break,
we’ll discuss fire management in wilderness.
Limit 12. Contact Meg Weesner at 520-2901723 or [email protected] Tucson
JUN 18 (WED) “C” Kendrick
Mountain Wilderness (5 mi.,
1000’ EC). Carpool 21 mi. NW of
Flagstaff to Kendrick Mt. Trailhead
for this hike. Contact Bev Full at
480 221 2554 or [email protected] Phoenix
JUN 21 (SAT) “A” Sundance Canyon –
West Clear Creek Wilderness (5 mi. RT).
Sunday, April 27, May 25, June 15
Contact: Steve Pawlowski, 602-254-9330, [email protected]
Help us restore habitat! Join us for an invasive weed pull and clean-up at the Rio Salado
Habitat Restoration Area, just south of downtown Phoenix. Once a dump site, the area is now
a lush riparian corridor that supports a variety of wildlife and recreation opportunities. We
need help removing trash and buffelgrass, a non-native, invasive species that alters habitat
and increases fire risk. Snacks, drinks, gloves, and tools provided.
Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Project
Saturday, May 3
Contact: Doug Murphy, 602-569-6078, [email protected]
Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area is a popular county park north of Phoenix. Join us to
help remove barbed wire fencing and to conduct basic trail maintenance. The plan is to
meet at the park at 8 a.m. and tackle the jobs before it gets too hot. Carpooling is strongly
encouraged – please contact Doug for more information. Snacks provided, courtesy of the
Saguaro Group.
Sierra Ancha Trail Maintenance
Saturday, May 17
Contact: Jim Vaaler, 602-553-8208, [email protected]
We will continue our work on Rim Trail #139. Starting at 7200’ elevation, we will
walk in about three miles to the 6600’ level. This trail is level and has great views
off to the south and east. The leader will talk about the recent fire history of this area as well
as the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act. The work will consist of sawing and removing
dead trees from the trail as well as clearing brush as necessary. Participants need to bring
their own gloves. Tools provided.
Technical canyoneering through a
wet canyon on the Mogollon Rim.
Sundance Canyon is a tributary
of West Clear Creek, a red rock
gem. This technical hike is for advanced canyoneering enthusiasts. There is
a considerable amount of wading and swimming; the crux is a 180’ rappel into a gor-
geous amphitheatre. All participants must
be strong swimmers, experienced in rappelling and ascending, and provide their own
gear including harness, descending device,
ascenders, carabineers, helmet, and sling.
Contact Mitch Stevens at 520-991-1199 or
[email protected] Tucson