Ranger Al Watson to Lead Anza Trail History Walks at Tumacácori National Historical Park
Contact: Anita Badertscher, (520) 398-2341
In October 1775, over 240 adventurous residents of New Spain and their livestock set off from what is now southern Arizona to colonize present-day San Francisco,CA. Juan Bautista de Anza, the charismatic captain of the Presidio of Tubac, led this 1300-mile trek. The expedition traveled along existing indigenous trails sometimes enlisting assistance from the tribal communities along the way. This route is known today as the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail.
Please join National Park Service Ranger Al Watson for a walk on the Anza Trail and learn more about the fascinating history of the expedition and the hardships endured by these intrepid travelers. The Anza Trail History Walks are scheduled for December through March on the last Friday of each month (December 28, January 25, February 22, and March 29). The 1.5-hour walks will leave the Tumacácori Visitor Center at 10:30 a.m. and will follow the level, unpaved trail to theSanta Cruz River. The total distance is approximately ½ mile. Participants will need comfortable walking shoes and water.
In addition to the Anza Trail History Walks, Tumacácori National Historical Park continues to offer guided walks to the Santa Cruz River every Wednesday at 10:30 a.m.from December 2012 through April 2013. These 1-hour, ½ mile walks focus on the relationship that people have had with the river through history. These walks begin at the Tumacácori Visitor Center.
Although these guided walks return to the mission, participants may choose to continue on their own along the Anza Trail north for 4.5 miles to Tubac. (Please note that this is a total of 9 miles roundtrip back to Tumacácori.) The trail closely follows the river, crossing twice, once on a narrow bridge and once over a log jam. The trail is level, and-although sandy-walking is relatively easy. Because the area is rich in wildlife, particularly birds, binoculars are useful.
The entrance fee for Tumacácori National Historical Park is $3.00 per person, with no additional charge for participation in the guided walks. Interagency Senior, Access, and Annual Passes are accepted. For information about the guided walks, call Tumacácori National Historical Park at 520-398-2341, ext. 0
Did You Know?
Soldiers of New Spain's frontier who protected the missions were known as soldados de cuera, or "soldiers of the leather jacket."