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Aravaipa Canyon Vinca Removal: August

August 10, 2018 @ 6:00 pm - August 13, 2018 @ 6:00 pm


Sky Island Alliance has been helping TNC and the BLM in Aravaipa Canyon for several years on a variety of projects to increase watershed health along this perennial riparian area. During this trip we are continuing our work to eradicate invasive plant vinca (or periwinkle) from the understory of the creek banks. We will also be planting native plants in and around areas that have been cleared of vinca. We’ll be bending, cutting, digging, getting dirty, and getting wet. We will be working to clear vinca right along the banks of the creek, meaning that we will be wading in and out of the water throughout each day. This work is part of our long-term goal of removing vinca from the entire canyon!

Please note that we are working at The Nature Conservancy Aravaipa Preserve, NOT in the BLM Aravaipa Wilderness Area. You may not enter the BLM Wilderness Area without a permit (available here: https://www.recreation.gov/). Visitors to the Wilderness Area are carefully managed to protect the wildlife and other natural resources; unauthorized visitation to the Wilderness Area puts SIA’s relationships in jeopardy and will not be tolerated. Don’t worry, though – there is plenty of beautiful creek to explore at the TNC Aravaipa Preserve!


The Nature Conservancy (TNC) has donated the use of the Aravaipa Canyon Preserve guesthouse, nestled right along Aravaipa Creek. TNC’s Aravaipa Canyon Preserve guesthouse has 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms, with showers and a full kitchen (with basic implements). There is also a screened sleeping porch, and a bunkhouse with two rooms with beds. You may choose to sleep on a bed (bring your own comfy bedding) or camp under the stars in your tent. Beds will be first-come/first serve, unless you let us know that you need to have priority, and there are no single-occupancy rooms available.

Bring your own meals for the weekend – a minimum of 3 breakfasts, 3 lunches, and 3 dinners, with snacks.
Potable water is available onsite, along with communal refrigerator space.
Be prepared to unplug – there is no cellphone or internet service at Aravaipa Canyon.
Bring work clothes and appropriate close-toed shoes that you don’t mind getting dirty and wet. You will also want sandals or water shoes for our work in the creek.
Insect repellent is a good idea this time of year!


During monsoon season, a high-clearance vehicle is strongly encouraged. There are 2-3 wet wash crossings (yes, there is perennial water!) before arriving at the guesthouse.

Option 1:
Meet at the SIA office at 406 S 4th Ave to caravan/carpool to Aravaipa Canyon at 2:30 pm on Thursday. We have limited room for passengers in vehicles – please let us know ahead of time if you need a ride so we can ensure space for everyone (or if you’d like to drive your personal vehicle and have space for a passenger).

We will head east on 1-10 toward Willcox (and a bathroom break) before heading off toward the northwest for the canyon. The last 40 miles or so are on a well-maintained dirt road.

Option 2:
If you have been there before and would like to meet us out there, just let us know when to expect you on Thursday or Friday evening.

From Tucson: (155 miles) Take I-10 east to Willcox exit 340. Turn left onto Fort Grant Road and go north 30 miles to Bonita. Turn left onto Klondyke Road and go 32 miles to Klondyke. Preserve entrance is seven miles past Klondyke. The last 38 miles is a gravel road and subject to closure during wet weather.

From Phoenix: (190 miles) Take Highway 60 east to Globe, then U.S. 70 south to Fort Thomas. Travel eight miles past Fort Thomas and turn right onto Klondyke Road. Travel 28 miles to Klondyke. Preserve entrance is seven miles past Klondyke. The last 38 miles is a gravel road and subject to closure during wet weather.

THIS TRIP IS FAMILY FRIENDLY! Just let Bryon know if you plan to bring any youngsters and if you have special concerns!

If you have further questions, please email Bryon Lichtenhan at: bryon@skyislandalliance.org




August 10, 2018 @ 6:00 pm
August 13, 2018 @ 6:00 pm
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The Nature Conservancy Aravaipa Preserve
39000 Aravaipa Canyon Rd
Willcox, AZ 85643 United States
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