Saguaro National Park – Arizona

Arizona

http://www.nps.gov/sagu
Completed: March 17, 2014
Junior Ranger – Senior Friendly

It’s right in my backyard! And it is considered to be Senior Friendly because there are no age limits listed, actually no age groups are given, nor a number of activities to complete. Even though the East unit, Rincon District, is within ten miles of my house it has taken almost a year, from when I started completing Senior and Junior Ranger programs, for me to to work on this booklet. It was worth the wait!

In the 18 page booklet there was a nice mix of reading, observation, identification and sketching. From completing several activities I learned that a saguaro on our property is probably 35-40 years old, as this year it has buds for the first time. Hopefully we’ll have blossoms soon.

Saguaro – crested (reason for anomaly unknown)

Activities provide information about plants, animals and the local Hohokam culture. One of the more challenging activities was titled “Tracks in the Desert”. Wow, trying to match nine different animal tracks with the correct animal took some time.

Visitor Center view

I spent approximately two hours completing the booklet, which included walking outside to record observations for “Desert Detectives” and “Junior Ornithologist”.

Cactus Flower – April 2014

Saguaro National Park has two units; Rincon and Tucson Mountains Districts. Even though I live on the east side of Tucson and picked up the booklet there, most of the activities were completed on the West side, at the Tucson Mountain District. The ranger on duty reviewed the booklet thoroughly and provided clarification on several items. I really appreciate when the rangers do take time to review the booklet with me. As I have stated previously I always learn something new, even in my backyard!

Junior Ranger booklet & badge

Junior Ranger certificate

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