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  • Writer's pictureTortolita Alliance

Tortolita Preserve-Planning For The Future

Tortolita Preserve

Strategic Concepts-Trail System Expansion & Connections Map


In early April, the Tortolita Alliance (TA) Board met with Marana Parks & Recreation (MPR) to discuss and plan for the future of the Tortolita Preserve (TP) and surrounding lands. The key topics were; (1) Infrastructure, (2) Environmental and (3) Planning Coordination. Here is a summary of the meeting. Please reference the Strategic Concepts-Trail System Expansion & Connections Map above.

The detailed Meeting Minutes are available by clicking on the link below.


  1. Remove legacy barbed wire fence-Phase I was completed on 5/2/24--see Desert Fence Busters Visit TP

  2. Convert portions of existing perimeter barbed wire fence to wildlife friendly fence.

  3. Relocate trail counter after getting at least one more year of data.

  4. Reduce number of carsonite trail signs and maintain existing metal signs.

  5. Improve North Trailhead (Brittlebush)

    1. Install by-pass around cattle guard to eliminate risk of injury-MPR already installed new bypass access gate-see photos below!

    2. Fencing, gate and erosion repairs.

  6. Expand TP Trail System now that the western portion of TP is completely fenced.

  7. Provide future TP Trail System connections:

    1. West-Connect TP Trail System to CAP Trail and the conceputal Cochie Canyon Trail.

    2. West-Connect Dove Mountain West Park parking lot to TP Trail System and Cochie Canyon Trail (when built).

    3. East-Connect TP Trail System to DMB Pedestrian Path and Tortolita Mountain Trails.

  8. Re-examine potential TP conservation land purchase options.


  1. Establish overall wildlife camera program.

  2. Saguaros

    1. Conduct inventory utilizing satellite imagery with field verification.

    2. Continue baby saguaro planting program.

  3. Invasive Plants-collaborate and monitor for invasive plants and pursue invasive plant management funding and programs for implemenation.

  4. Environmental Education

    1. Develop youth environmetal education program that builds on the El Rio Preserve program.

    2. Collaborate with Tohono Chul for environmental education programs at TP.

    3. Conduct Bioblitz III-maybe in five years.

    4. Update Animals and Plants of the TP annually.

Planning Coordination

  1. Coordinate TP Strategic Concepts with MPR Master Plan Update (2030-2040).

  2. Determine status of the Open Space and Wildlife Conservation Master Plan inlcuded in the Make Marana 2040 General Plan (Item RS-11-1).

Meeting Minutes-TA & MPR-TP Strategic Concepts w_map-4-1-24
Download PDF • 2.63MB

TA will be reviewing these Strategic Concepts and more at the TA Fall General Meeting (to be announced).

TP-North Entrance-New Bypass Gate To Avoid Cattle Guard


Thanks so much to MPR and especially Jay Grodman (Natural Resources Supervisor) for the fantastic collaboration!


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