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Art in Tubac, Arizona

Tubac art by SearchNetMedia
Tubac art, a photo by SearchNetMedia on Flickr.

For more information on what there is to do and see in Tubac, visit

A short road trip from Tucson to Madera Canyon

Madera Canyon by SearchNetMedia
Madera Canyon, a photo by SearchNetMedia on Flickr.

We took a short road trip from Tucson to Madera Canyon yesterday. It was cool temps and fragrant pine air. A great “birding” spot! Yesterday we were fortunate to see some “wild turkeys”.

For a slide show of the big birds:

Madera Canyon – slideshow #1

For a slideshow of another Madera Canyon visit, from Tucson through Sahuarita and Green Valley, see:

Santa Cruz Valley – Madera Canyon-Green Valley-Sahuarita – slideshow #2

For more places to visit around Madera Canyon, visit

Santa Cruz Valley folks seek reform of nation’s 1872 mining law

The Sahuarita Sun reports, “Sahuarita has seat at Washington talks on mines”, and that “Farmers Investment Co. owners Dick Walden (Waldens own 5,000 acres of pecan groves) and Nan Stockholm Walden of Sahuarita and two other local activists attended the hearing and presented senators with an inch-thick set of documents on the proposed Rosemont Copper mine in the Santa Rita Mountains titled, “An Example of the Devastating Impacts of an Antiquated Law in One of the Most Scenic Areas of Arizona.”

Murray Bolesta photo of proposed mine site

Murray Bolesta photo of proposed mine site

The Sun further stated, “Senators were given a 2008 letter from the Arizona Game and Fish Department to the Forest Service says the mine would virtually destroy wildlife habitat in the northern Santa Rita Mountains, and could jeopardize groundwater supplies in the Santa Cruz Valley for decades.”

Photographs of the of Santa Rita Mountains by Santa Cruz Valley’s own, Murray Bolesta of CactusHuggers Gallery in Tubac, were used as part of effort at US Senate on Tuesday to confront US mining law and the Rosemont situation.

Nice shootin’, Murray!

For more information visit these sites:

US Senate link on issue
Save the Scenic Santa Ritas (SSSR)
Sky Island Alliance
CactusHuggers Photography
Image used with permisson.

Those beautiful Santa Rita Mountains

Santa Rita Mountains off Highway 83

Santa Rita Mountains off Highway 83

We love the outdoors and nature, especially here in unique beautiful Arizona. We are so fortunate to be able to explore Southern Arizona, including Tucson, the Santa Cruz Valley and Cochise County. While I do not consider myself a “tree hugger“, Murray Bolesta, who is an amazing photographer and a real “cactus hugger” (he owns Cactus Huggers Gallery in Tubac, Arizona), would send me regular emails in support of an organization called “Save the Scenic Santa Ritas (SSSR)“.  I never got around to really diving into the information on the website until last weekend. Lainie, at SSSR, was very helpful pointing out some things to look at on the site. SSSR’s mission is “To protect the scenic, aesthetic, recreational, environmental and wildlife values of the Santa Rita Mountains, Patagonia Mountains, Canelo Hills and San Rafael Valley through education and outreach, including protection of these areas from degradation due to mining activities.”

I never really appreciated that the beautiful landscape that you see traveling down Highway 83 to Sonoita – Patagonia from Tucson, was about to change forever. The Proposed Rosemont Copper Project would be an open pit mine much larger than what you see in Bisbee, Arizona. SSSR’s site has all kinds of information, including photos and maps, that show the area. This area also includes beautiful Davidson Canyon. There is also excellent information, including videos, on the Hilton Ranch Road Community Organization website.

The Santa Rita Mountains are included in a National Heritage Area, which was designated as such with the help of The Santa Cruz Valley Heritage Alliance. This is relatively new organization and is an advocate for this region’s valuable heritage. They successfully coordinated with the US House of Representatives to gain approval as a federally designated National Heritage Area. Tourism in this area, and the revenue it will generate, is just beginning.

The Santa Cruz Valley has only recently started to make the world aware of it’s spectacular beauty, history, culture, and all the great places to stay and visit. And with this increased tourism, there is a wonderful opportunity to bring in long-term clean jobs, while still preserving the environment.

The Rosemont Mine may bring in some short-term jobs, but it will forever disfigure the spectacular Santa Rita Mountains, and the damaging effects and costs of this open pit mine will not be known for many years.

We encourage you to drive south of Tucson down Highway 83 to see the views for yourself – “The proposed Rosemont mine would be visible from Highway 83. If you stop at the overlook at Mile Marker 45-46 (Save the Scenic Santa Ritas adopted that section of the highway back in 1997), you will be looking right at the site. Nearly everything you see from there would be covered with mine waste, pit, roads, and processing facilities. Check out the photos on the SSSR website, on the Impacts Page, under Scenic View. That’s a real photo from the overlook, and a photo with the Silverbell Mine superimposed on the site. It’s an idea of what the Rosemont mine might look like……The overlook is a great spot to view the area, but if you drive back on Rosemont Junction Road about a mile or two, you’ll be in the area that would be buried hundreds of feet deep of waste rock and tailings.”

Some of the scenic beauty off Highway 83 can be seen in our Sonoita-Elgin Slideshow.

Visit Save the Scenic Santa Rita’s (SSSR) for more information.


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