Wild Arizona: Escudilla Mountain and More

James Robert Terrell | Escudilla Wilderness

James Robert Terrell | Escudilla Wilderness

EDITOR’S NOTE: Each afternoon in September, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act, we’re spotlighting three of Arizona’s 90 wilderness areas. For more information about any of the state’s wilderness areas, visit Wilderness.net, a collaboration between several wilderness-related organizations. The information here comes from that site and the wilderness areas’ managing agencies. Always contact the managing agency before visiting a wilderness to learn about any restrictions that may be in effect. To see our entire Wild Arizona series, click here

Escudilla Wilderness
The 2011 Wallow Fire burned much of this wilderness’ namesake mountain, but it’s already renewing itself, with aspen thickets and native grasses growing amid burned trees. Large elk herds can be found on Escudilla Mountain, and naturalist Aldo Leopold wrote about the peak in A Sand County Almanac.

Location: North of Alpine
Established: 1984
Size: 5,200 acres
Managed by: U.S. Forest Service
Contact: Alpine Ranger District, 928-339-4384 or www.fs.usda.gov/asnf

Grand Wash Cliffs Wilderness
Located in Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument, this land is among the most remote and infrequently visited in the world. The wilderness features rugged canyons, scenic escarpments and colorful sandstone buttes. One maintained 11-mile trail traverses the length of the wilderness.

Location: West of Grand Canyon National Park
Established: 1984
Size: 37,030 acres
Managed by: Bureau of Land Management
Contact: Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument, 435-688-3200 or www.blm.gov/az

Mount Tipton Wilderness
You’ll find Joshua trees, among Nature’s most bizarre-looking plants, in this wilderness, which includes part of the imposing Cerbat Mountains. Mount Tipton, at 7,148 feet, dominates the area. Mule deer, bobcats and Gambel’s quail can be found here. Bring plenty of water if you plan to stay awhile.

Location: North of Kingman
Established: 1990
Size: 31,380 acres
Managed by: Bureau of Land Management
Contact: Kingman Field Office, 928-718-3700 or www.blm.gov/az

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Wild Arizona: Celebrating Arizona’s Wilderness Areas All September

Peter James Nature Photography | Superstition Wilderness

Peter James Nature Photography | Superstition Wilderness

If you’ve picked up our September issue (on newsstands now), you know that the cover story celebrates Arizona’s wilderness areas — the 90 places in our state given the ultimate protection under federal law. That’s in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act, signed into law September 3, 1964.

Now that it’s September 1, we’re excited to announce a 30-day blog series titled Wild Arizona. Each afternoon in September, we’ll be spotlighting three of those 90 places on the Arizona Highways blog.

With each post, you’ll get information on what can be found in each wilderness, where it is, how big it is, when it was established, and which government agency manages it. We’ve included contact info for those agencies so you can learn about any closures or restrictions before visiting.

Look for the first entry in Wild Arizona later today. We hope you enjoy this series!


Filed under Mother Nature, News, Wild Arizona

Friday Fotos (Classic): Babies!

Jody M. Tanner

Jody M. Tanner

As we mentioned last week, Friday Fotos is on hiatus because our blog editor is on paternity leave. To celebrate, here’s a “classic” Friday Fotos gallery that appeared last May. Everyone loves baby animals, right?

We’ll have one more throwback gallery next Friday, and regular Friday Fotos will resume the week of September 8. Enjoy your weekend, everyone.

By submitting photographs to Arizona Highways via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr or other social networking sites, the photographer grants Arizona Highways electronic rights. No financial consideration will be paid to anyone for publication on the Arizona Highways blog or website.

By publishing a photographer’s work to its blog, Arizona Highways does not endorse the photographer’s private business or claim responsibility for any business relationships entered into between the photographer and our readers.

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Throwback Thursday: Arizona Highways, August 1990


From the issue: “A violent storm showers the desert with lightning bolts.” The issue included several more storm photos, along with a story about how University of Arizona scientists were researching new ways to pinpoint lightning strikes. Photo by William L. Wantland.

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Filed under Covers, Throwback Thursday, Vintage AZ

U.S. Postal Service Debuts Grand Canyon Stamp

Courtesy of U.S. Postal Service

Courtesy of U.S. Postal Service

If you’re looking for a reason to send something via U.S. mail, look no further: A new book of stamps from the U.S. Postal Service features paintings from the Hudson River School art movement, including Thomas Moran’s Grand Canyon.

The “forever” stamps, available in books of 20, are the 12th installment in the USPS’ American Treasures series. The other three stamp designs are Thomas Cole’s Distant View of Niagara Falls, Asher B. Durand’s Summer Afternoon and Frederic Edwin Church’s Sunset.

Of Moran’s painting, the USPS had this to say in a news release:

Thomas Moran is represented by the 1912 painting Grand Canyon, from the collection of the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, Mo. The painting embodies Moran’s ability to convey scenes that are both idealized, but also recognizable to people who have seen the actual landscape themselves. “My aim,” Moran said in 1878, “was to bring before the public the character of the region.”

You can buy the stamps at any post office or on the USPS website.


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You Tell Us: What’s the Best Burrito in Arizona?

We’ve been closely following the Burrito Bracket, a FiveThirtyEight project in which burritos around the country face off, March Madness style, to see which is the best burrito in America. Arizona’s own Carolina’s Mexican Food advanced to the Sweet 16 with its red machaca burro, but last week, it lost out to a Los Angeles bean-and-cheese burrito in a closely contested semifinal.

Some of us here can personally vouch for the deliciousness of Carolina’s burritos, but there are plenty of other great burrito joints in the Grand Canyon State. In fact, it’s a travesty that the FiveThirtyEight bracket included only one other Arizona restaurant, Vincent’s on Camelback in Phoenix. (While Vincent’s is a fine establishment, its entry was a lobster chimichanga, which isn’t really a burrito and also isn’t on the menu anymore.)

This isn’t the first time we’ve polled you on this, but you tell us: What’s the best burrito in Arizona? (We’ve started with a few old favorites in this poll, but feel free to add your own suggestions.)


Filed under Loco for Local, Poll