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279 S Linda Ave, Tucson, AZ 85745, USA
For about two decades now, this city in the Sonoran Desert has become a February gathering place for artists and vendors from all over Africa. For a couple of weeks, a tent city pops up and about a hundred vendors set up shop. Associated with the...
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Arizona, USA
Few cities in the U.S. can claim to be 'sandwiched' by a National Park; Tucson might well be the only one. Saguaro National Park is divided into Eastern and Western divisions that flank the city--plenty of wilderness hiking within a half-an-hour's...
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311 N Court Ave, Tucson, AZ 85705, USA
El Charro sits in a converted set of historic houses & buildings a block off Tucson's old town district—the same location where it began serving food in 1922. We had lunch here, at a big old wooden table in a warmly decorated dining room. Ask to...
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5501 N Hacienda Del Sol Rd, Tucson, AZ 85718, USA
The Grill is the only restaurant in Arizona to receive the “Award of Ultimate Distinction” from Wine Enthusiast. History, quiet service, and the most romantic dining in Tucson are all here. For the best dinner-with-a-view, ask for a table in the...
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6300 N Swan Rd, Tucson, AZ 85718, USA
At the foot of the Santa Catalina Mountains is the ten-acre complex, the DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun. A national historic district, the grounds are a blend of natural desert garden, adobe architecture, and museum—all the vision of one man. Ettore...
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Hohokam Road, Tucson, AZ 85745, USA
Just beyond the western edge of Tucson, you'll find these Hohokam petroglyphs in Saguaro National Park. No one knows precisely when they were carved into the rocks, but Hohokam settlements in the Sonoran desert date back almost two thousand years....
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8451 W McCain Loop, Tucson, AZ 85735, USA
We had gone to Gates Pass, just west of Tucson, to watch the sun set—one of the 'must-do' things in this desert city, for residents and visitors alike...On this cloudless evening, though, this particular sunset was not turning into one of those...
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1100 W Ruins Dr, Coolidge, AZ 85128, USA
Don't go looking for Casa Grande, the national monument of pre-Columbian ruins, in Casa Grande, the sprawling exurb of a town about halfway between Phoenix and Tucson. You have to drive about 20 miles away to the small town of Coolidge to find the...
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5425 N Kolb Rd #115, Tucson, AZ 85750, USA
A little over a mile from where the deer roam in the saguaro-studded foothills of the Santa Catalina Mountains, sit down for some izakaya-style dining. Japanese "tapas" might not be a completely accurate description for this genre of shareable...
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446 N Campbell Ave, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA
In Tucson, gelato is, understandably, becoming part of the cityscape. A handful of Italian gelato-masters have settled here, educating desert palates with tempting desserts. Here, just a few blocks from the University of Arizona, Allegro rotates...
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Tanque Verde, AZ, USA
Late June in southern Arizona: the 'snowbirds' have fled, but for the hardy souls who endure the heat, the promise of rain eventually appears...Saguaro blooms morph into crimson fruit, harvested by the native Tohono O'odham people who turn it into...
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Tumacacori, Tumacacori-Carmen, AZ, USA
Want hot chiles? mild peppers? powder? paste? Across from the old Spanish mission in Tumacácori, you'll find it. For decades, family-owned and family-run Santa Cruz Chili & Spice Co. has been providing flavors in Southern Arizona. There's even a...
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Hike into Bear Canyon on the northeastern edge of Tucson, and you'll be rewarded (most of the year) with a view of Seven Falls, gushing out of the Santa Catalina Mountains. Even though the hike in and out is around seven miles, it's mostly flat....
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Tanque Verde, AZ, USA
"Monsoon." The word evokes images of the endless summer rains of South and East Asia...But in the American Desert Southwest, 'monsoon' means scattered but intense thunderstorms from late June through September. The hottest part of the year can...
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11570 N Oracle Rd, Tucson, AZ 85737, USA
When the southern Arizona desert gets just the right mix of rains at the right time in fall and winter, the following spring can produce a riot of wildflowers. People around Tucson said that the spring of 2010 was one of the best displays in...
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5700 North Sabino Canyon Road,, Tucson, AZ 85750, USA
Many who have not visited Arizona think that its saguaros grow in a Sahara-like setting...but the mountainous desert around Tucson hides many lush spots, like this riparian canyon on the NE edge of the city. Late fall paints the cottonwoods along...
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The trail up Blackett's Ridge on the northeastern edge of Tucson leads to a rocky 'island' in the sky, some four thousand feet high, perched above two desert riparian canyons. Arizona's second largest city feels a world away from up here, even...
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Arizona, USA
Few things are as evocative of the American Desert Southwest as the saguaro cactus. One of the best places to get up close to these spiky giants (as tall as 60 ft, as old as 200 yrs, as heavy as 2 tons!) is near Tucson. Arizona's second largest...
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Archaeological evidence shows human presence around this warm-spring-fed oasis NE of Tucson going back thousands of years. The grounds were a ranch from the late 19th through the mid-20th centuries; today it's free and open to the public. Weekends...
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2021 N Kinney Rd, Tucson, AZ 85743, USA
Mountain Lion. Cougar. Puma. Panther. Any way you call it, it's majestic but fear-inspiring... At the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum, on the western edge of Tucson, you can get face-to-face with one of these massive felines; their well-designed...
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Catalina Hwy, Arizona, USA
Downpours are isolated but intense during a Tucson summer. The mid- to late-summer "monsoon" in the Desert Southwest of the U.S. can be the most uncomfortable time to visit, if you're only considering the thermometer. So often, though, the vast...
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7768 W Picture Rocks Rd, Tucson, AZ 85745, USA
Follow the yellow flower road in the Sonoran Desert; wildflower displays of poppies don't necessarily happen every year. (Last year was a bust in Saguaro Nat'l Park near Tucson; this year the timing of the winter rains was just right!) So, spring,...
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15000 North Secret Springs Drive, Marana, AZ 85658, USA
No matter how posh, there's always a place for something deep-fried to go with drinks, eh? Tucked into its own private canyon on the far northwestern edge of Tucson, the Ritz-Carlton Dove Mountain resort is the epitome of understated desert...
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11570 N Oracle Rd, Tucson, AZ 85737, USA
There's more than sand in the southern Arizona desert. Come mid-winter through spring, or after the mid-summer monsoon rains, and you'll find flowing water and reflecting pools among the cacti-studded hills. On the northwest flank of the Santa...
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6300 N Swan Rd, Tucson, AZ 85718, USA
The desert foothills garden in front of Tucson's "De Grazia Gallery in the Sun" is full of palo verde trees. Each spring they erupt into brilliant yellow blooms. I'd gone to visit the gallery, (legacy of painter Ettore "Ted" De Grazia), but the...
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Que Bonita offers furniture from the Sierra Madre, textiles from Guatemala, Peruvian ceramics, Native American jewelry from the Southwest—all on the way to (or from) Mt. Lemmon on Tucson's northeast side. This family-owned...
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Gates Pass, Arizona 85745, USA
Residents and visitors alike drive out to the western edge of Tucson on most evenings. The area averages 350 sunny days a year, so viewing the sunset is almost always a possibility. Summer evenings are predictably hot, but you're in for a...
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4280 N Campbell Ave, Tucson, AZ 85718, USA
When you hear the phrase, "summer in southern Arizona," naturally your thoughts will tend toward heat and sunshine. Most wouldn't think of mounds of fresh produce at a farmers' market in the desert city of Tucson. But the arrival of the monsoon...
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1950 San Xavier Rd, Tucson, AZ 85746, USA
Just to the southwest of Tucson, on the San Xavier Reservation, sits the late XVIII-century Mission San Xavier del Bac, one of the finest examples of Spanish colonial architecture in the U.S. The combination of late Baroque and Moorish-inspired...
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5201 S 12th Ave, Tucson, AZ 85706, USA
Come to "El Güero Canelo" if you're in southern Arizona. It's a Tucson institution where you can get the best "Sonoran/Mexican hot dogs" north of the border... But what's a Sonoran hot dog? It's a wiener wrapped in bacon(!), served atop beans in a...
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Popsicles that are prickly? Well, prickly as in 'prickly pear' juice from the cactus fruit that ripens into a sweet, amethyst treat in midsummer in the deserts of the Southwest. They're called tuna in Spanish. Stop by the Farmers' Market on a...
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3061 N Campbell Ave, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA
Cholla (pronounced "choyah") cactus are common in the American Southwest, but not many outside of the region know that you can eat the flower buds. They're high in calcium, and even help balance blood sugar. Many Tucson residents have never tried...
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375 S Stone Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
Casa Vicente is an institution in this desert city—Tucson's outpost for tapas a la española. Just south of the downtown core, a couple of blocks from the neo-Baroque façade of the Cathedral of San Agustín, this restaurant also features live music...
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348 S Meyer Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
Just south of downtown Tucson is a reminder of the city's Hispanic-and-adobe past: the Barrio Viejo. One of the most eye-catching buildings is the Teatro Carmen, which opened in 1914. For the rest of the teens and on into the mid-1920s, this venue...
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Barrio Viejo, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
Adobe streetfront: door...window...sky. Color. Much of Tucson, like most western U.S. cities, is devoted to strip malls and parking lots, but the historic core still has blocks of 19th-century Sonoran-style row houses. In the 1960s, acres and...
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A, 2221 I-19 Frontage Rd B102, Tubac, AZ 85646, USA
Tucson is predictably well-endowed with Mexican restaurants...But it's still worth driving about an hour south to the little town of Tubac for a meal at Elvira's. Upon entering the cool space, you won't be surprised to learn that the chef/owner...
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5700 North Sabino Canyon Road,, Tucson, AZ 85750, USA
One of the best things about Tucson is what's all around it: desert and mountains. It's anything but barren, if you know where to go. All along the northern edge of the city are the Santa Catalina Mountains, rising to over 9100ft/2770m. Hikers,...
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311 E Congress St, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
This small historic hotel in downtown Tucson wears many hats: a "best bar in America," serving drinks continuously since 1919; site of the 1934 capture of infamous bank robber John Dillinger; dance club; and the longest-running music venue of its...
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Hotel Congress, 311 E Congress St, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
A destination since 1919, Tucson's Hotel Congress is home to the Cup Café—one of the best places in town from breakfast to happy hour and on into late night. Look up when in the restaurant. A couple of 'dead soldier chandeliers' will light your...
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110 E Pennington St, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
No, you don't have the wrong address—this is indeed a downtown office building and parking garage. But don't be alarmed. Walk through the door, and Café Poca Cosa's stylish interior tells you immediately that this is no boring strip mall Tex-Mex...
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13700 N Oracle Rd, Tucson, AZ 85739, USA
In a large and ever-growing city, remnants of Tucson's past can still be found with the working cowboy/girl on ranches that provide trail rides to those wishing for a glimpse into western life of old.
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2200 E Elm St, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA
I always stay at the Arizona Inn while in Tucson, the service is what many come for, but the architecture and old time Tucson feel is what I can't get enough of.
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Arizona, USA
If, like most visitors, you head for Tucson between Thanksgiving and Easter, you're probably seeking sun and warmth while the rest of the country deals with the winter blahs. And you'll most likely find what you're looking for. There's a reason...
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7301 E Tanque Verde Rd # 191, Tucson, AZ 85715, USA
Far from his native Bologna, gelato master Nazario Melchiondo crafts tastes that have found a ready home in the desert city of Tucson, Arizona. Always fresh, it's made on site, and the flavors change seasonally. One decadent way to enjoy the...
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Tucson, AZ 85721, USA
Every March, a temporary tent city sets up for one weekend on the grassy Mall in the center of the campus of the University of Arizona. Over 100,000 people gather under the palms. In just five years, the Tucson Festival of Books has grown to...
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N 4th Ave, Tucson, AZ, USA
Come here and you'll find a solar-powered bookstore, a Guatemalan restaurant, pubs, galleries, cafés, and this brick wall tribute to Gregory Colbert's "Boy Reading to Elephant." (The words that come to mind when I pass this street art are "tell me...
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50 E Broadway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
Chile en nogada is a poblano chile pepper, stuffed with peccadillo (shredded meat, aromatic diced dried fruit and spices), topped with a walnut-cream sauce and pomegranate seeds. This dish from Puebla is not often found on menus of Mexican...
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1859 W Grant Rd #103, Tucson, AZ 85745, USA
A husband-and-wife team have brought Canada's national junk-food, born in Québec in the 1950s, to Tucson—finally, you can eat "poutine" in southern Arizona! And it's even "local"...the "Zany Beaver" food-truck gets its cheese curds from local...
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1859 W Grant Rd #111, Tucson, AZ 85745, USA
Tucson may well be in the desert, but it's got a handful of good microbreweries—including Dragoon Brewing on the west side of the city. From their tasting room, you can get a view of the tanks as you sample their offerings. My favorite was the...
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9121 E Tanque Verde Rd, Tucson, AZ 85749, USA
Le Buzz is the place to hang out and caffeinate on Tucson's northeast edge. They roast their own coffee, bake their own pastries, and they're on the way if you want to pick up something for a picnic on your drive up to Mount Lemmon above the...
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2081 West Hardy Rd, Willcox, AZ 85643, USA
"Orchards" is not the word that comes to mind when most think of southern Arizona...but less than 2 hours east of Tucson, up in the high desert, Apple Annie's is a family farm destination for fresh summer fruit. At an elevation of 4400 ft (1300m),...
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6230 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85712, USA
It's not every day that you come across a classical Chinese zither in a bookstore...especially in southern Arizona...But you just might at Bookmans in Tucson. Generations of Tucsonans have gone to Bookmans to buy, sell, trade books and so much...
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1013 E University Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85721, USA
On the campus of the University of Arizona in Tucson sits the largest and oldest anthropology museum in the SW United States. If the history and culture of the region interest you, this is the place--the museum is an affiliate of the Smithsonian...
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Pima Canyon, Arizona 85718, USA
One of the quickest and most immersive city-into-wilderness hikes is a trip from Tucson to Pima Canyon. From downtown Tucson, it's a quick drive up through the Santa Catalina foothills to the trailhead parking lot—tucked into saguaro-studded...
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6260 E Speedway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85712, USA
For a decade and a half now, Tucsonans have been coming here for fresh-baked bread...and much much more. Get some challah French toast in the morning...or a chicken-green-chile omelette...and no shortage of croissants and scones... Mid-day, if you...
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7010 E Broadway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85710, USA
A faux Wild West building connected to a 1950s diner in a strip-mall parking lot—don't let the surroundings mislead you—the Gaslight Theatre has been a hit in Tucson for 35 years, and if you're in town, you should plan for an evening here. The...
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Mt Lemmon, Arizona 85619, USA
On the northern edge of Tucson, you can drive through a condensed version of western North America's ecosystem in about half an hour. On the way up the Mount Lemmon Highway (also known as "Catalina Highway" or "Sky Island Scenic Byway"), you...
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5350 E Broadway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85711, USA
You won't find any mediocre pastries or kitschy mugs at Savaya. Here, it's all about the coffee. Owner Burc Maruflu hails from Turkey, and his passion for coffee permeates this intimate space — which is just big enough for a long mesquite bar, a...
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300 E Congress St, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
While "eating local" has established itself as a trend across the U.S., many are surprised to find farm-to-table restaurants in Arizona—it's a desert, after all! Well, even in the desert southwest, there are ranches, orchards, farms, and even...
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Romero Canyon, Arizona 85619, USA
One of the best day-hikes from Tucson is just north of town, on the 'back side' of the Santa Catalina Mountains: Romero Canyon. Drive up to Catalina State Park for the trailhead, and you'll begin trekking through mesquite woods and towering...
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Mt Wrightson, Arizona 85624, USA
Tucson is surrounded by mountains. As you look south, however, the highest and most distinctive peak is Mt. Wrightson (9,453ft/2,881m) in the Santa Rita range. Hike to the top and you'll be rewarded with a 360-degree view from the highest point...
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Ventana Canyon, Catalina Foothills, AZ 85750, USA
The foothills around Tucson are home to some of the best spa-golf-resorts in the U.S. and you don't have to go far for a taste of the wilderness before you turn in. Just behind the Loews Ventana Canyon resort on the edge of the city, an unspoiled...
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1580 Duval Mine Road, Green Valley, AZ 85614, USA
Visitors flock to southern Arizona for sun and saguaros... ...but for a hole in the ground? Other than the ones on golf courses? From the 1960's to the 1980's, Tucson was ringed by eighteen steel-and-concrete-reinforced holes in the ground--highly...
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1891 I-19 Frontage Rd, Tumacacori, AZ 85640, USA
The wording is irresistible: "Get a taste of history." On the grounds of one of the oldest Spanish missions (est. 1691) in Arizona, tortillas cooked over a mesquite fire, in the shade of mesquite trees, steps from an adobe church--this is...
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Think of beverages in Arizona, and maragaritas may come to mind, but green tea? Lapsang souchong? Pu-erh? A few blocks east of the University of Arizona in Tucson, Seven Cups was recently named one of the best places in the U.S. to have authentic...
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119 E Toole Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701, USA
Mexican-Korean fusion has arrived in the desert! Every few weeks, all the food trucks in Tucson converge in different neighborhoods for a 'food truck roundup' fiesta, and now, Mafooco (the Mexican Asian Food Company) is among them. Folks in ...
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5039 East 5th Street, Tucson, AZ 85711, USA
In mid-town Tucson, along with the best Tom Kha Gai soup in town, this mural awaits you in Char's Thai Restaurant. The juxtaposition of mythical Southeast Asian creatures and Monument Valley desert scenery makes for some very unlikely, but...
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276 S Park Ave, Tucson, AZ 85719, USA
Drive a few blocks east of downtown Tucson, turn south on Park Avenue, and you'll find three blocks of historic warehouses that have been transformed into "The Lost Barrio." If you're on a road trip, you'll probably be okay with fitting your...
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Kitt Peak, Arizona 85634, USA
About an hour and fifteen minutes southwest of Tucson rises Kitt Peak—a 6875-ft mountain crowned with the world's largest concentration of optical telescopes, radio telescopes, and the world's largest solar telescope. And just south of Kitt Peak,...
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27 E Ramsey Canyon Rd, Hereford, AZ 85615, USA
When people think of southern Arizona and its border with Mexico, cactus and sun-baked sand may come to mind — but a mountain canyon with fall foliage, homestead cabins, and deer? Go high enough, and you'll find this and more. The Huachuca...
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E Bonita Canyon Rd, Willcox, AZ 85643, USA
A couple of years ago, on Black Friday, my wife and I headed away from the malls of Tucson and into the mountains: Chiricahua National Monument, just west of the New Mexico border in SE Arizona, was one of the last strongholds of the Chiricahua...
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4070 S Avenida Saracino, Hereford, AZ 85615, USA
Last April, I spent a morning hiking along the San Pedro River, just NW of Bisbee, AZ; the caterpillars were astoundingly abundant. When I stopped, I could hear them munching on leaves all around--a surround-sound of crunching, the aural fecundity...