On Saturday, August 22, nine volunteers worked together to close one-half-mile of old road and open the newest half-mile of the Arizona National Scenic Trail. The project took place on AZT Passage 31, south of Walnut Canyon, famous for its beautiful sandstone cliffs and cliff dwellings. This improvement had been identified as a priority by the Coconino National Forest and the Arizona Trail Association, so we worked together to make it happen. With ATA’s COVID-19 protocols in place, we kept the group size small and required everyone to remain physically distant. The hard-working crew enjoyed the beautiful weather of northern Arizona while accomplishing a quality improvement to the AZT. An entomologist with the Forest Service who hiked the length of the Arizona Trail last year, joined the volunteer crew. He shared his knowledge and experience about the western bark beetle and other scourges of the ponderosa pine forest. Everyone was safe, worked hard, and enjoyed some time together (but separate) in the pines. Additionally, ATA Staff assisted with the rescue of a hiker on the way out, and everyone made it back to their vehicles just before a monsoon unleashed on the plateau. If you’d like to join us for some upcoming trail work opportunities, please check out our Volunteer Website. Lots of great opportunities are being planned throughout the state over the next four months. The feeling of giving back to the Arizona Trail makes every future hike, run and ride even more meaningful. Fires in the Rincon Mountains
The lightning-caused Spud Rock and Mica Bowl Fires continue to burn in the higher elevations of the Rincon Mountains within Saguaro National Park, affecting Passage 9 of the Arizona Trail. The Spud Rock Fire has burned more than 520 acres. Firefighters have been clearing vegetation from nearby trails to serve as fire breaks. The Spud Rock Wilderness Campground and all trails in the Mica Mountain west of the Arizona Trail have been closed. The Arizona Trail remains open, however is subject to closure without warning due to the unpredictable nature of wildfires. Firefighters are using Manning Camp as their base of operations, so no camping permits are available at that location until all operations are complete. The ATA discourages visiting the Rincon Mountains until the fire has been contained and the National Park Service determines it is safe for visitation again. To learn more, visit the Saguaro National Park website or InciWeb. We Need YOU for AZT in a DAY
Have you registered for AZT in a DAY on October 10, 2020? We invite you to join friends and fans of the Arizona Trail as we hike, run, bike, ride and roll our way across the state in a collective community attempt to complete the entire Arizona National Scenic Trail in one 24-hour period. You can register for free on the AZT in a DAY web page, but spaces are limited to avoid crowding at trailheads and along the trail. The entire trail has been divided into 100 segments varying in length from 2 miles to 15 miles. The AZT in a DAY page includes each of these segments, along with directions to trailheads and access points, road conditions, photos, and which segments are closed due to wildfires and other impacts. There's even information on which segments are open to dogs.
In addition to motivating trail enthusiasts to enjoy the trail as one big community on October 10, AZT in a DAY is also an ideal way to help fundraise to support the trail. Our easy-to-use platform allows you to share your fundraising with friends through social media and email. Where do you dollars go?
One $500 campaign enables us to empower a student with outdoor and stewardship education for one full year
Two fundraisers reaching their $500 goal funds one full day of volunteer trail work, including coordination, staff supervision, travel reimbursement, insurance, lunches, and the purchase of tools to put in the hands of eight volunteers
Five fundraisers reaching their goals will allow us to hire a machine operator to construct 1/2-mile of new trail
Ten successful fundraisers help us design, purchase and install a two-panel trail-head kiosk
Twenty-five will allow us to hire a youth conservation corps for two weeks to conduct trail building and maintenance in remote areas beyond the reach of most volunteers.
Learn more online and register for free here. Then, get ready to hit the trail on October 10!
Create Your Free Postcard Online Today and Tell Arizona's Senators to Keep It Grand
A picture is worth a thousand words, and the Arizona Trail and Grand Canyon are priceless. That's why the Arizona Trail Association is urging Congress to pass the Grand Canyon Centennial Protection Act. In order to help deliver this important and timely message, we need your help. Please participate in the Keep It Grand campaign by using our online platform to create a postcard that will be printed and mailed to Arizona Senators Martha McSally and Kyrsten Sinema. You can choose from existing images and message, or create your own. Using your own personal photo on the Arizona Trail or within Grand Canyon is strongly encouraged. The entire process takes less than one minute and is completely free. Grand Canyon and the Arizona Trail are pillars of Arizona’s economy, with outdoor recreation generating $21 billion in consumer spending annually, supporting over 200,000 jobs, and sustaining rural communities. The Canyon’s watershed and the Colorado River it feeds provides life-giving water for wildlife, recreationists, and more than 40 million people in the West. The Grand Canyon Centennial Protection Act already passed the House of Representatives in a bi-partisan manner, and would protect over 1 million acres surrounding Grand Canyon National Park from new uranium mining by making permanent an existing but temporary 20-year moratorium on mining on the Canyon’s north and south rims. Visit www.KeepItGrand.net to create your postcard and deliver a powerful personal message to Arizona's Senators today! Job Opportunity
The Central Oregon Trail Alliance (COTA) is hiring its first Executive Director to chart the course for the organization’s next phase of growth. The ideal candidate is a positive, flexible, and team-oriented leader with the enthusiasm and vision to guide COTA in fulfilling its mission to develop, protect, and enhance the mountain biking experience in Central Oregon. COTA is dedicated to designing, constructing, and maintaining sustainable singletrack trails and preserving access for mountain bikers through trail stewardship, public outreach, advocacy, and education. Formed in 1992 as an all-volunteer organization, COTA has more than 1,300 members and chapters in Bend, Redmond, Crook County, Madras, Sisters, and South Deschutes County. The Executive Director will support and work closely with the leadership of the six COTA Chapters and report to the 15-member Board of Directors to ensure sound financial management while maintaining a safe and enjoyable work environment for COTA’s employees and volunteers. Salary range is $65,000 - $80,000 depending on qualifications and experience, plus a stipend for benefits. Learn more about the opportunity here. The deadline to apply is coming up soon!