Colossal Cave Mountain Park, Nature Walk 12/7/2019

On Saturday, December 7th, Deb Petrich (C1) and Kathy Carter-McLin (C3) participated in a PCNRPR interpretative (?) hike, led by Sandy Reith, Program Specialist with the Environmental Education Team, on part of the Arizona Trail located in Colossal Cave Park.  Did you know that the Hohokam, primarily hunter/gatherers and occasional farmers, used this area from 800-1450 AD.  Eventually they moved towards advanced agriculture and began settling in more permanent, larger villages, or “Plazas”.  The actual cave was used as a seasonal shelter and storage facility.

December in the Park area is usually mild with an average high of 65 degrees, low of 39 degrees and average rainfall of almost 1″  We used the Seek app on our hike to identify such flora as Christmas Cholla, Berlandier’s Wolfberry, Wheeler Sotol, Mariola, Brownfoot, various types of Agaves plus much more.  In addition, we spotted and heard a mockingbird, curve-billed thrasher and cactus wren.  Kathy was inspired to compose this poem after our walk.    In addition, please see our photos after reading.

Come walk with me
Upon this land where ancients farmed and prayed for rain.
Where spirit gods kiss desert and plain
Whence from it springs the seeds of life.

That I can see this life and bathe in the sun’s warm blanket
To watch and record her mysteries
As they change from month to month
A pleasant task filled with beauty and unexpected surprises.

Rejoice that we are here
And now to see it and do what we can to protect
And nurture in ourselves and others
Such a love that we preserve it
For those yet to come for eternity.

Photos:  Deb Petrich (C1) and Kathleen Mclin-Carter (C3)


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