Bob Findling of The Nature Conservancy discusses conservation work in the Santa Fe Canyon Preserve at the overlook above Four-Mile Pond.

Trail Program Manager Tim Rogers led a guided hike up Picacho Peak for visitors to Santa Fe participating in the National Land Trust Alliance (LTA) Conference.  Discussion along the way centered on the work of Santa Fe Conservation Trust and public and private partners to preserve the natural beauty of the east-side foothills and to maintain and establish trail easements through the area.


Medium- and longer-range hikers head south up the bank of the Acequia del Llano, using a recent trail re-route made possible through collaboration between SFCT, TNC, the City, and local volunteers.



The group first met with Bob Findling of The Nature Conservancy, who explained some of the history of the Santa Fe River watershed and the Santa Fe Canyon Preserve before a short hike and interpretive break at Four-Mile Pond (former Four-Mile Reservoir).  From there, Bob led a group of shorter-range hikers through the preserve area around the pond, while Scott Wilber of the New Mexico Land Conservancy and Tim Rogers took the bulk of the LTA hikers up through the south section of Dale Ball Trails toward Picacho Peak.

Longer-range LTA hikers enjoy the view at the top of Picacho Peak.




Those who completed the rigorous hike up to the peak enjoyed a beautiful view and a cool breeze before heading back down to the trailhead and into town to finish conference activities.  All along the way, there was an interesting exchange of ideas on land conservation and trail issues from Rhode Island to Washington State.  (It was noted that some of the southern U.S. contingent had ducked out to watch the Kentucky Derby!)  We are happy to say that everyone made it back to the bus in one piece, refreshed and hopefully inspired by our area’s wonderful natural landscapes and trails.