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The Phoenix Trails

Volunteers for Outdoor Arizona is building new trails
Two new trails in South Mountain Park, started in February 2010 and completed at the end of April, are connected to the National Trail. In the future, these trails will be served by a new trailhead to be built on Chandler Blvd, a short distance west of 19th Ave. While construction of the trailhead is some time off, the City of Phoenix contracted with VOAz for the construction of these new trails to help direct users onto a well planned, properly constructed trails. These new trails will reduce use of unsustainable paths people create on their own. Such paths can leave scars that are unpleasant to view from within and outside the park and contribute to erosion of fragile desert soils.

Volunteer Work
Volunteer opportunities for this project will be advertised on the Events Calendar. Please note: all VOAz events require advance registration.

Job 1 - 620 Preserve South Mountain Park Preserve


Upcoming Events
There are no upcoming events.

Completed Work
Number of Events: 13
Total Volunteer Hours: 584
Total Participants: 109
Project Outputs
Feet of rock wall built: 50
Feet of existing trail maintained: 500
Feet of new trail built: 800
Feet of new trail built (Additional tread finishing): 300
Hardened drainage(s) built: 9
Feet of degraded trail rehabilitated (on old road): 40
Tread hardening (stone pitching, etc.): 20
Other (feet of Stone Pitching): 15
One rock dams or media lunas built: 2
Other (Feet of Stone Pitching): 37
Feet of realigned trail built (4 ft wide tread cleared of rock): 1700
Feet of new trail built (finishing road to trail conversion): 1400
Hardened drainage(s) built (Armoured existing drains on Trail 2 of 620 Project): 5
Tread hardening (stone pitching, etc.) (Feet): 15
Feet of trail closed for revegitation: 1000

Completed Event Reports

March 5, 2011  Interim Trail Link to Chandler Blvd
VOAz volunteers were joined by volunteers from the American Legion to complete a link between 19th Ave. and West Chandler Blvd. that now provides a safe and authorized access to the nearly six miles of the "620" trail completed by VOAz in 2010.

Thanks to the American Legion Post for providing snacks before and after the work and the Rick Plautz, South Mountain Preserve Park Manager and Ranger Susan Arbogast for their energetic assistance and overall support for this event.

Funding for this work was provided through the City of Phoenix, JOC #00127109.
Total Volunteer Hours: 113    Total Participants: 27
Event Outputs
Feet of degraded trail rehabilitated (on old road): 40
Feet of new trail built: 800
One rock dams or media lunas built: 2

November 3, 2010  Construction
After hiking in, we split into 3 groups. The first group reinforced existing drain dips on the lower part of Trail 2, the second group sweep in more dirt on previously completed stone pitching, and the third group re-cached stone pitching rocks and added a new stone pitch section around 2 miles into Trail 2. We worked until 11:30am and hiked back to the parking area for snacks and cool water at 12:15pm.
Total Volunteer Hours: 29    Total Participants: 5
Event Outputs
Hardened drainage(s) built: 9
Tread hardening (stone pitching, etc.) (Feet): 15

October 27, 2010  Construction
With a sunny but cool morning, we hiked in at 7:30am to our first drain to be armoured about 1/4 mile from the parking area. Two drains were armoured and we continued up trail to armour 3 more. Volunteers completed work at 11:30am and hiked back to the car by noon for snacks.
Total Volunteer Hours: 17    Total Participants: 3
Event Outputs
Hardened drainage(s) built (Armoured existing drains on Trail 2 of 620 Project): 5

October 23, 2010  Construction
In spite of the lower than expected turn-out, stew volunteers and a paid crew member completed two sections and did the finishing on another.
Total Volunteer Hours: 7    Total Participants: 1
Event Outputs
Tread hardening (stone pitching, etc.): 20

October 20, 2010  Construction
We gathered at 7:15am and began hiking in at 7:20am for another day of stone pitching on Trail 2 of the 620 Project. Though raining on the hike in the rest of the day was cool and breezy. We began stone pitching on the next two sections above the "bee hive", completing about 10 feet in each section. After a break at 10:00am we finished work just before noon and hike back to the cars for snacks.
Total Volunteer Hours: 24    Total Participants: 4
Event Outputs
Other (Feet of Stone Pitching): 22

October 13, 2010  Construction
We gathered at 7:00am for another day of stone pitching on Trail 2 of the 620 Project. Temps were warmer today but we all pulled together to finish a 30 foot section of stone pitching begun last week and even began work on the next pitching section up trail. After a group photo and admiration of our hard work, we headed back to the trail head for snacks.
Total Volunteer Hours: 20    Total Participants: 4
Event Outputs
Other (feet of Stone Pitching): 15

October 6, 2010  Construction
Following a day of heavy rain and hail, volunteers braved the weather forecast to enjoy a beautiful breezy day on Trail 2 of the 620 Project. After hiking about a mile up the trail, three groups of 2 began stone pitching a steep section of the trail below the old bee hive area. This long section of stone pitching will continue in an upcoming event. The crews were back to the trail head by noon for snacks and refreshments.
Total Volunteer Hours: 24    Total Participants: 4
Event Outputs
Other (Feet of Stone Pitching): 15

May 8, 2010  Wildcat Trail Closure
The last event under our first City of Phoenix JOC Contract!
We had 14 volunteers from around the Valley (Cave Creek to Maricopa) join efforts to close a fall-line trail now that the new trails at South Mountain are complete. This social "wildcat" trail had been there for a long time, so we took bold measures to close off access and reduce visibility of the trail in order to allow the scar to heal. Volunteers performed a variety of tasks, including:
  • closed-off potential cross cutting areas with palo verde branches and other desert "debris"
  • blocked and closed social trail connections
  • minimized erosion along the old, heavily-used wildcat trail by building shallow drainage lines to disperse water
  • installed trail closure signage and used Cholla balls to deter use
We followed up the morning's work with ice cream sundaes and root beer floats to celebrate.
Total Volunteer Hours: 42    Total Participants: 14
Event Outputs
Feet of trail closed for revegitation: 1000

March 20, 2010  Rock Armoring
On a perfect Saturday AM, volunteers hiked into the big wash crossing on Trail1 of the 620 project. The back slope of the new ramp on the east side of the wash was reshaped to receive a horse-proof base course. Additionally, armoring above that will help to reduce debris accumulation on the trail. That work done, the crew walked back toward the trail head and shaped several small drainage crossings and armored outflow points to prevent trail damaging head cutting.
Total Volunteer Hours: 47    Total Participants: 9
Event Outputs
Feet of rock wall built: 50

March 6, 2010  Construction
Cairns built and/or rebuilt; machine built trail finished; plants replanted; vegetation in corridor removed/cut back; some drainage ditches built; section of new hand cut trail finished; guides stones placed, divots smoothed. No injuries reported, no complaints lodged.
Total Volunteer Hours: 117    Total Participants: 15
Event Outputs
Feet of existing trail maintained: 500

February 27, 2010  Construction
A dozen volunteers, including four first time volunteers, finished the road segment of trail one at the 620 site. The cloudy day made for perfect working conditions. This road-to-trail conversion included four hardened cross drains and 1000 feet of armored side drains installed to reduce runoff damage where the roads plunge into wash crossings
Total Volunteer Hours: 74    Total Participants: 12
Event Outputs
Feet of new trail built (finishing road to trail conversion): 1400

February 20, 2010  Corridor Clearing & More
Five volunteer and their leader open a small reach of trail and working on "post-excavator" finishing before the rains drove them away.
Total Volunteer Hours: 31    Total Participants: 6
Event Outputs
Feet of new trail built (Additional tread finishing): 300

January 23, 2010  Corridor Clearing
Five volunteers cleared rock from 1,700 feet of four foot wide tread across very low sloping ground to start the work on Trail 1 of this project. A primary reason for the work was to open the path for the excavator to be used to cut trail bench further in.
Total Volunteer Hours: 39    Total Participants: 5
Event Outputs
Feet of realigned trail built (4 ft wide tread cleared of rock): 1700



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