April 2015 Program Schedule News Release

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Date: March 11, 2015
Contact: Saguaro East - Melanie Florez, (520) 733-5153
Contact: Saguaro West -  Richard Hill, (520) 733-5158

Saguaro National Park is offering a variety of hikes and talks this spring that explore the park's wonderful natural and cultural histories. Program listings also are available on the park's website, www.nps.gov/sagu, or visit us on Facebook. Interpretive programs are free, but park entrance fees apply. Program schedules are subject to change; call the visitor centers for updates or reservations.

Naturalist Programs at Tucson Mountain District (West, 2700 N. Kinney Road):

March 31    3:15 p.m.    Wasson Peak     Hike: 7 hours, 8 miles roundtrip
This hike climbs 1,700 feet to the highest point in the Tucson Mountains. Enjoy a 360-degree view of the sunset before descending by the light of the moon. The hike is at an easy pace but is considered difficult due to elevation gain, distance, and hiking after dark.Ages 10 and older. Reservations required: 733-5158

April 1    5:15 p.m.    Twilight Glow To Moon Shadows  Hike: 3 1/3 hours, 2 ½ miles
This walk bridges sunset into moonlight, letting hikers experience the desert in both the glow of twilight and the light of the waxing moon.It ascends a hill with a gentle, packed slope,then changes trails to descend a sandy wash. The hike is completed with a return on a dirt road. Ages 10 and older. Reservations required: 733-5158.

April 2    4:30p.m.    Sunset Hike    Hike: 3 ¾ hours, 3 ½ miles
The route gains 700 feet (with some switchbacks near the top) before reaching a ridgeline for sunset;the descent is by the light of the moon.Ages 10 and older.Reservations required;733-5158

April 3    5:15 p.m.    Nighttime Reflections     Hike: 3 hours, 2 ½ miles
This slower-paced hike of no more than 3 miles will follow paths taken by people and animals for centuries as we reflect on ages past and present and enjoy saguaro patterns in the moonlight. The walk follows a wash, then climbs a hill before returning on a dirt roadway. The hike is mostly simple but a few rock outcroppings in the wash require sure footing. Ages 10 and older. Reservations required: 733-5158

April 4    7:30 p.m.    Moonrise Over The Mountain    Night Patio Presentation: 45 minutes
Guitarist, singer, and songwriter Mark William will perform during this popular "campfire" program on the patio. Joining him will be Robert Hval, who plays the Native American flute. Listen to music while enjoying a relaxing view of the full moon as it rises above the cactus forest and mountains. No reservations are required; bring a lawn chair and warm clothing. No pets or food, please. All ages welcome. Wheelchair accessible.

April 11    9:45a.m.    Bird Walk    30 minutes plus optional additional 30 minutes, ½ mile
Learn how birds find food, water, and shelter during a 30-minute walk in the sandy wash behind the Visitor Center. This walk will continue for a second 30 minutes at Sus Picnic area to see what wrens, hawks and other birds live there. No reservations required.

April 2, 9, 16    2:15 p.m.. Geology of the Tucson Mountains    Talk: 45 minutes
Geology professor Richard Liebe explains how the Tucson Mountains were formed –and what is shaping them today. April 16 will be Dr. Liebe's final presentation of this popular program that he has presented in the winter season for years. He is retiring and returning to the East. Join us to wish him bon voyage.

April 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 10:15 a.m.    The Plants Tell All    Hike: 2 hours, 1 ½ miles
Learn the secrets of what ties the plans and animals of the Sonoran Desert together in the web of life. For this moderate walk wear closed-toes shoes and a hat, and bring water.


Naturalist Programs at the Rincon Mountain District (East, 3693 S. Old Spanish Trail):

April 1, 8, 15, 22, 29  11:00 a.m. Flash, Whoosh, Gush, and Growth: Sonoran Desert Monsoon Rain*
The summer heat and humidity bring the mighty and sometimes destructive monsoon rain. Saguaros, frogs, and others depend on these drenching afternoons to begin a new season of life in the dry desert. Wheelchair accessible.

April 2, 9, 16 2:00 p.m.    The Saguaro Nursery    ½ mileguided walk
The reports of the saguaro's demise were greatly exaggerated! Take a stroll along a trail to see the next generation of young saguaros and the gradual renewal of the "Cactus Forest".

April 3    8:00 a.m.    Desert Bird Walk    1 mile guided walk
Join volunteer naturalist Ralph Terry for an easy 2-hour walk in search of desert birds. Wear comfortable walking shoes and bring water.

April 3, 10, 17  2:00 p.m.    Drive-Thru Geology    1 hour auto tour
Hop in your car for a journey through 25 million years of earth history…in one hour! We'll observe the varied landforms of the desert –bajadas, washes, outcrops –and find out why geology students from around the world come to see the Rincon Mountain foothills. (Hint: it's the mylonitic gneiss!)

April 3, 17    7:00 p.m.    Night Walk    1 mile guided walk
Join a park naturalist for this easy two-hour hike to explore and experience the Sonoran Desert at night. Dress for the weather, wear comfortable walking shoes, and bring water and a flashlight. As space is limited, advanced reservations are required, and can be made by calling 733-5153.

April 4    2:00 p.m.    Dynamic Duos    guided walk
Peanut butter and jelly. Day and night. Abbott and Costello. Sal y Limon. When two things combine, the result can be a great partnership. Learn how plants and animals have formed dynamic duos in Saguaro National Park in this easy, 2-mile walk.

April 4 6:00 p.m.    Sunset Stroll    ½ mile guided walk
Sonoran Desert sunsets are famous for their blazing colors. Join a park ranger to discover how nature will paint the sky tonight.

April 7, 14    2:00 p.m.    Reptiles of the Sonoran Desert    Presentation
Join park naturalist Bob Brandner for this 30-minute presentation to discover the fascinating world of reptiles and amphibians. Wheelchair accessible.

April 12    3:00 p.m.    Medicinal Plants of the Desert    presentation
Learn about some of the native plants that are both easy on the eye and can make you feel better as well. Wheelchair accessible.

April 16    7:00 p.m.    Star Party    illustrated program &activity
Join park naturalists for an introduction to astronomy and a look at the desert night sky. Telescopes and binoculars will be available. Reservations required. Call 733-5153. Wheelchair accessible.

Visitor Center Locations/Phone Numbers
Both visitor centers are open daily from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, except Christmas Day.

Red Hills Visitor Center (Saguaro WEST)       Rincon Mountain Visitor Center(Saguaro EAST)
2700 North Kinney Road                                 3693 South Old Spanish Trail
Tucson, AZ85743                                           Tucson, AZ85730
(520) 733-5158                                               (520) 733-5153

For more information about Saguaro National Park and some of its partners, Friends of Saguaro National Park, Western National Parks Association, and the Rincon Institute, visit these websites:

www.nps.gov/sagu                                                    www.wnpa.org

www.friendsofsaguaro.org                                        www.rinconinstitute.org

Last updated: March 20, 2015

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Mailing Address:

3693 S Old Spanish Trail
Tucson , AZ 85730


(520) 733-5153

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