Fishing for roundtail chubs at Fossil Creek in northern Arizona

[Source: DeWayne Smith, Special for the Arizona Republic] — How many Verde trout have you caught lately?  No, we’re not talking about rainbow trout in the Verde River that drains into Horseshoe and Bartlett lakes in central Arizona.  We’re talking about the roundtail chub (taxonomically known as Gila robusta and more informally as the Verde trout) that can be found in perennial streams and rivers throughout the state, including the Verde River where there is a somewhat formidable population.  Yes, they are legal to catch and currently the limit is one fish measuring 13 inches or longer.

Roundtails are also found in Fossil Creek, the recently returned-to-nature stream that flows out from under the Mogollon Rim southwest of Strawberry.  And if the Arizona Game and Fish Department has its way, a stretch of the creek will become the state’s latest put and take fishery that will only be available to anglers during winter months.  That is one of seven proposals Kirk Young, state fisheries chief, is talking around during a series of public meetings prior to a formal proposal before the Arizona Game and Fish Commission in October.  “Since the reclamation of the stream, parts of it have a lot of roundtails in it and the fish are not fully established in other parts,” said Young of the chub which can get as large as 3 pounds.  [Note: to read the full article, click here.]

Take the Arizona Trail Users Survey

This study is part of an effort to develop plans for the State Trails Program and the Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Program.  The survey is being conducted among parks and trails enthusiasts and organization representatives to ask for input into the trail planning process.  This list was developed by the Arizona State Parks Board and Arizona State University.

Your participation in this survey is very important.  Your answers will help set priorities for trail management in Arizona, and help determine how a portion of the Heritage Fund and the Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) Recreation Fund should be spent.  The Heritage Fund comes from Lottery revenues and the OHV Fund comes from gasoline tax dollars.  Some of these funds go directly to provide recreational trail opportunities and facilities for all Arizona residents and visitors.

The survey will take approximately 15 – 20 minutes to complete.  Your answers to this survey are completely confidential.  Your name will not be connected to your answers in any way.  Your participation in this survey is voluntary; however, you can help us very much by taking a few minutes to share your opinions.  To take the survey, click here.

Footbridge, garden envisioned for Lizard Run Park in Surprise, AZ

The cost of the bridge has been estimated at $300,000 to $400,000.  The city has $283,000 budgeted.  City staff asked the council on Aug. 14 to transfer $81,000 to the Lizard Run project from a defunct alley-paving project in the Original Town Site.  However, council members voted 5-1 against the move, instead placing the money in the council contingency fund.  Members reasoned that there was not enough information about the project to make a smart decision.  They agreed that the money should be placed in their contingency fund, which the council can allocate as it sees fit.  [Note: to read the full article, click here.]

1904 Nogales courthouse symbolic site of entry to Anza Trail

[Source: Manuel C. Coppola, NoglesInternational.com] — Albeit symbolic, the Juan Bautista de Anza Historic Trail now has an official entry point from Mexico in Nogales at the 1904 Courthouse on Morley Avenue.  To celebrate the designation of the trailhead, a “fiesta” is planned Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 11-12, said Lillian Hoff, a founder and president of the Friends of the 1904 Courthouse board of directors.  The event will be highlighted by the first exhibition of 12 commissioned paintings depicting various scenes from the 1775-76 Anza Expedition, said Hoff.  She said that the courthouse will have an Anza Trail room commemorating the expedition and the trailhead into the United States.

Artist David Rickman, who has had an interest in the Spanish Colonial period, was commissioned by Anza Trail staff and has been creating the paintings over the last several years, said Margaret Styles, an interpretive specialist with the National Park Service in San Francisco, Calif.  Styles and Hoff will co-host the exhibition. [Note: to read the full article, click here.]