New Mexico thistle

New Mexico thistle

Part of the Maricopa County Regional Parks System, Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area encompasses 2,154 acres of diverse, rugged upper Sonoran Desert. The park offers ranger-led programs each month. Pre-registration is required for all ranger-led events, and social distancing, masks and other safety measures are in place.

Here are a few of the programs coming up in March.

March 6: Rock Art of Spur Cross (8–10am)

The petroglyphs found in Spur Cross were created hundreds of years ago by the Hohokam people. Walk in their footsteps and visit a few sites in the conservation area during this two-hour hike. Meet at the main trailhead area where restrooms and picnic tables are located. No dogs on this hike.

March 10 & 30: Desert Defenders — Spur Cross Invasive Species Weed Pull (7–11am)

This event includes physically removing invasive plants by pulling, bagging and disposing. Bring gloves; a hand tool such as weed digger or screwdriver can be helpful (depends on species and recent precipitation). Bring water, snack and dress appropriately for working around desert plants (spiny plants) in long sleeve shirt, pants and closed toed shoes.

Owl clover

Owl clover

March 13: Dragonfly Trail Hike (8–11am)

Join park ranger Kevin on this exploration of the Dragonfly Trail. On this moderate 3.5-mile hike, visit a prehistoric rock art site as well as stroll along a beautiful section of riparian habitat on Cave Creek. Bring plenty of water. Meet at the main trailhead area where the restrooms and picnic tables are located.

March 20: Hohokam Houses-the Ruins of Spur Cross (8–11am)

Join staff for this 2.5-mile hike that will introduce visitors to the rich archaeological history of the area. See evidence of prehistoric Hohokam dwellings and learn about their culture while trekking up to one of their mesa-top compounds. Bring plenty of water. No dogs on this hike. Meet at the main trailhead area where restrooms and picnic tables are located.

Full moon at Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area

March 27: Moonlight Hike through Spur Cross (7–9pm)

The conservation area is a different experience when seen softly illuminated by the silver moon. While the aim is to minimize the use of flashlights, bring one in case it is needed. Meet at the main trailhead area where restrooms and picnic tables are located. 

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