A “virtual tour” of the 800-mile National Scenic Arizona Trail will be presented in the comfort of the Oracle State Park ranch house living room on Saturday, January 31, by Sirena Dufault, who has personally hiked the continuous Mexico-to-Utah distance. The slide-photo presentation begins at noon and is free with park admission.
Oracle is a “gateway community” for hikers, with three miles of the trail passing through Oracle State Park and the official trailhead adjacent to the historic American Flag Ranch just off Mt. Lemmon Rd. The Ranch is owned and maintained by Oracle Historical Society.
Ms. Dufault, Gateway Community Liaison for the non-profit Arizona Trail Assn., will also speak about opportunities for the Oracle community to expand its local support to hikers, day-hikers, mountain bikers, equestrians, and their teams. A detailed printed map of the trail, along with information about the association, will be provided. Their website is www.AzTrail.org
“Our” trail only recently earned the “National Scenic Trail” designation, thus becoming one of only 11 in the US. The Pacific Crest NS Trail is the longest (2,600 miles) and is featured in the best-selling book and current movie “Wild” by Cheryl Strayed. Second longest is the Appalachian National Scenic Trail (2,100 miles). Both were founded in 1968.
The park entrance is on Mt. Lemmon Rd; admission is $7 per car. More information at 520-896-2425 or visit www.azstateparks.com/Parks/ORAC for details of many upcoming events.