Juan Bautista de Anza Trail

In 1774, Juan Bautista de Anza was helped by American Indian guides to discover a land route from Mexico to California. Various times in my travel I noticed Juan Bautista trail signs, and now I know it is an auto tour marking the more than 1200 mile historic trail from Nogales, AZ to Monterey, CA which includes many historic sites. In 1775, Juan brought about 240 people across the new frontier of New Spain from Mexico to California. With military escort and 1000 head of livestock, the journey took 5.5 months for the settlers to complete.

The settlers camped at some historic places I have visited, such as Historic Canoa Ranch – campsite #15, Mission San Xavier del Bac – campsite #17, and Picacho Peak State Park – campsite #21. Someday I will visit other historic sites on this national historic trail. I walked a couple of miles of the trail in the Rio Rico area beginning at the Guy Tobin Trailhead.

A short distance from the trailhead there is a chained gate. It was a local man, Guy Tobin, who had the foresight and public support to contribute land and establish a 13 mile segment of trail from Rio Rico to Tubac. He worked with the Anza Trail Coalition and National Park Service. Guy Tobin died in 2008 and a few months later the trailhead was dedicated to him. In 2011, Friends of the Santa Cruz River and Tucson’s Watershed Management started a year-long project constructing rainwater harvesting features at the trailhead.

Once upon a time, there were Mexican wolves and jaguars here, but now one may see bobcat, coyote, javelina and mule deer. I was happy to photograph this mule deer!

It is a very sandy trail with plenty of birds singing in the trees. The only flower I saw was the southwestern prickly poppy.

It was a wonderful place to escape everyone and have a trail almost to myself. I saw 2 people the entire time!

Tucson Rodeo Parade

After asking many Tucson locals about the Tucson Rodeo Parade, I decided to check it out. For the locals I spoke with, they had been bringing their young children in years past, but now many were on their way to ski or swim elsewhere for a holiday weekend (school is out for 2 days during the rodeo week). The Tucson Rodeo is a weeklong event, one morning for the rodeo parade. It is the longest non-motorized parade in the world and I was there for it all!

People lined the streets with their chairs, strollers, backed-in pick-up trucks and tail-gate food, along with food truck vendors and food stalls. Did I say kettle corn? Yes, that too.

Cowboy hats of all sizes and colors were for sale too. Along with every other item you can imagine.

how about this color?
how about this color?






how about this snack?
how about this snack?

Marching bands, wagons pulled by horses…only one horse ran free for a few minutes before being caught by a cowboy…do not know where its rider was!?! Many organizations, schools, restaurants, businesses of all sorts were represented, even the National Park Service… thank you for maintaining our Saguaro National Parks!

many beautiful horses!
many beautiful horses!

Many riders...
many riders…


lasso work!
lasso work