New trailhead expands quality recreation - The Explorer: Editorials

New trailhead expands quality recreation

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Posted: Wednesday, September 21, 2011 3:00 am

Just in time for the fall hiking season, the Town of Marana has completed construction of the Wild Burro Trailhead located just

south of the Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain Resort.

The landscaped trailhead features a stabilized decomposed granite surface, parking for more than 60 passenger vehicles and 10 recreational vehicles, restrooms, benches, a shade ramada and table, horse hitching post and water.

Dove Mountain developer Cottonwood Properties dedicated the two-acre trailhead parcel to the Town of Marana in 2007 and was a key partner, along with the Ritz Carlton, Dove Mountain. The project was funded by 2004 Pima County General Obligation Bonds as part of the Tortolita Mountain Trail System. Robin Riley, a local artist, created two large rock cairns that mark the way to and from the trailhead. 

In 2006, the Town of Marana began constructing trails in the Tortolita Mountains with the help of volunteers and contractors. Today, the Tortolita Trail System continues to expand and includes more than 25 miles of backcountry trails for hikers, mountain bikes and equestrians.

The trails provide access to Pima County’s Tortolita Mountain Park and offer incredible views of the Tortolita, Tucson and Catalina Mountains. There is a trail suitable for every fitness level.

On the third Saturday of the month, from September through April, the town’s Parks and Recreation Department offers guided hikes from the Wild Burro Trailhead. Descriptions of the hikes can be found at the Marana Parks and Recreation web page at www.marana.com.

The Tortolita Mountains are a fantastic outdoor recreation destination right outside your back door. The Town of Marana is committed to quality recreation opportunities for residents throughout the region, and construction of the Wild Burro Trailhead is further proof.

For more information about Marana’s path and trail system, please contact Jen Ward, outdoor recreation coordinator, at 382-1950.

Tom Ellis is the Town of Marana’s parks and recreation director.

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