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Contact: Sue Walter, (520) 387-6846 x7301
Ajo, Arizona –The U.S. Border Patrol Ajo Station has increased its Horse Patrol Unit (HPU) with the recent graduation of agents through the class. The Ajo Station HPU patrols at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument in an effort to reduce mechanized equipment in the wilderness. The horses are wild horses captured on Bureau of Land Management lands and trained at the Arizona Department of Corrections –Florence West Facility and the Colorado Department of Corrections' Cañon City prison for the Border Patrol for use on public lands.
In addition to their regular patrols, the HPU has been collaborating with the monument to develop a virtual equestrian trails system. Riders will be able to download waypoints from the parks website to guide them on "virtual" routes through different areas of the park. Currently there are seven trails under consideration and review that have been designed by members of the HPU and staff at the monument. "We are working towards having these trails open for use by fall" says monument Superintendent Brent Range. "They have the knowledge of the terrain and the skill in riding to create something that will benefit our visitors."
For more information about recreational opportunities at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument please visit www.nps.gov/orpi or call 520-387-6849, extension 7302.
About the National Park Service: More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 407 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit us at www.nps.gov, on Facebook www.facebook.com/nationalparkservice, Twitter www.twitter.com/natlparkservice, and YouTube www.youtube.com/nationalparkservice.