What we're about

This is a group for those interested in hiking, backpacking, and even horse-packing in Arizona's designated Wilderness Areas. With appreciation for Arizona’s wild lands and waters, we make tangible contributions to enhance the integrity and ecological condition of Arizona’s wild places.

As part of the Arizona Wilderness Coalition (http://azwild.org), the "Wild Stew" goal is simple: to get out into wilderness areas, report on what we see, and maintain and preserve public lands. Exploration, monitoring, and maintenance are key to the integrity and sustainability of our remaining wild places. What could be better? We hike/backpack into amazing places throughout Arizona and provide a huge benefit for our wild lands and waters!

Upcoming events (1)

Cedar Bench & Pine Mountain Wilderness Trail Maintenance

We are seeking experienced and enthusiastic volunteers for a four-day trail maintenance trip, June 12 – 15, in both the Cedar Bench and Pine Mountain Wilderness Areas. We will be focusing on a mix of treadwork, brushing and clearing deadfall with crosscut saws. Because this requires a 1 to 2 hour drive in on UTVs, everyone will need to commit to the entire length of time and be prepared to hike multiple miles daily on uneven surfaces carrying tools and work hard in potentially hot weather using primitive tools, including loppers, hand saws, crosscut saws, and tread tools for digging the trail surface. PROJECT LOCATION INFORMATION The Cedar Bench Wilderness falls along a broad northwest-southeast trending ridge or "bench," and from this elevated perch visitors can glimpse stunning views of the desert's vivid colors. The Wilderness occupies the dividing line between the Verde River and the Agua Fria River drainages, with the Wild and Scenic Verde River forming a portion of its eastern boundary. Elevations in the area range between 4,500 feet and 6,700 feet with a primary vegetative cover of chaparral and lesser amounts of pinion pine and Utah juniper. The Pine Mountain Wilderness was designated in 1972 and has a total of 20,053 acres. At 6,814 feet, Pine Mountain is the highest point on the Verde River Rim, which slashes across this area from northeast to southwest. On the mountain's southeastern side the unmistakable steep and rocky Skeleton Ridge falls toward the Verde River, a National Wild & Scenic River. On the rim you'll find an "island" of tall ponderosa pine and Douglas fir surrounded by desert mountains and hot dry mesas covered in pinion and juniper, cut by rugged canyons. The rim overlooks the Verde River with fine views out across the desert. We will be focusing our efforts on the Cold Water Trail #27 in the Cedar Bench Wilderness and the Verde Rim Trail #161 in the Pine Mountain Wilderness. HOW TO PARTICIPATE Because space is limited for transportation, we are looking for hard working, experienced and committed volunteers who are willing to spend the full trip at the project site. If you are interested or have any questions, please call Brian Stultz at (775)[masked] before RSVPing to this event to discuss the trip. MEETING LOCATION AND DIRECTIONS Sycamore Cabin Admin Site, Dugas, AZ — 8 AM - From I-17, take Exit 268, Dugas/Orme Road exit - Head East towards Dugas on Forest Road 68 approx. 8 miles - Continue past Dugas approx. ½ mile and turn right (South) at the Sycamore A.S. road sign (Forest Road 68F) - Continue approx. 1 mile to the cabin Google Maps Link: https://goo.gl/maps/YcmZ4Lq4KbYgkjjz8 High clearance is not needed to get to this location, but the road is dirt and washboard in some locations. There may be people renting the cabin, so if you get there before we do please park near the barn away from the front of the cabin. We will carpool from this location to the project site. GEAR LIST - Please provide your own meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks) for the four days of the trip. - Capacity for 3 - 4 liters of water per day. Water will be provided - Day pack - Personal protective equipment: work gloves, eye protection (sunglasses are fine) — hard hat will be provided. - Under our volunteer agreement with the Forest Service, you must wear closed-toe shoes or you will not be able to join us. - Appropriate clothing. Work clothes must be long pants and long sleeve shirt. Warm layers for the evenings. - Sun protection (sun screen, sunglasses, hat, etc.) - Camping equipment: sleeping bag, sleeping pad, tent/shelter, flashlight (batteries), plate/bowl, utensils, toiletries/toothbrush, first aid kit, other? - Optional: Hiking poles WEATHER As the event gets closer, please check the weather to ensure you are properly prepared. Click the following link to see a weather forecast for the area. https://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?lon=-111.81452661752701&lat=34.280745506200745

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