The San Pedro River flows north, somehow a rarity in North America. It hosts over two hundred bird species. This is a major migration corridor for 85% of our bird species. The river is part of the two percent of Arizona’s landmass that is considered riparian area.
Ninety-five percent of these riparian water sources are damaged or destroyed. There has been an ongoing struggle to protect this natural treasure. It has dry spots and much of it only flows seasonally. The ground water, which feeds it from the surrounding mountains, is being sucked out with the growth of thirsty communities like Sierra Vista. Conservation measures are in place, but the influence of money, profit and politics, greed disguised as good economics, continue to whittle away at our true wealth.
There is a 40 mile long belt on the river that varies in width that is for wildlife preservation. The river is lined with huge cottonwoods. Mesquite bosques lie beyond. I only recently found how extensive that this preservation is. I called the visitor center and was told that there was water at the bridge there. Downstream, they didn’t know. We have been in drought for two years. We will use the visitor center bridge section as a backup, in case the river is dry.
There are fewer people downstream near the bridge close to the ghost town of Fairbanks. We are heading to Fairbanks to look for flowing water in the river. We are continuing our birthday celebrations weekend, traveling from a late morning start in Gardner Canyon.
Here is that story:
We’re picking up where it left off.