Organ Pipe National Park

Organ Pipe National Park

About Me

I purchased "Sadie''s House On Wheels "in late 2007 and loved traveling in a motor home so much that I went on the road full time in late 2008. I started writing this blog to help me remember all the wonder places I have been and it allows me to share those places with my family and friends. Summer of 2013 I decided to hang up the keys for a while and moved back into my stick house. After nearly two years, I am on the road again.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Quitoboquito, Organ Pipe Cactus NM, February 1

Quitoboquito is a natural Oasis in the desert, and part of the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument. OrPi also borders on Mexico's Reserve de la Biosfera El Pinacate with only Highway 2 separating the two parks.  Although the  road to Quitoboquito is closed, free van tours are offered by the park on the weekends in February.  The area is perceived by the media as "potential threat" to visitors (thus the reason this part of the park is closed) and  the van tours are escorted by park rangers and park rangers have a presence while touring the pond.  The "perceived threat" is due to proximately to the Mexican boarder, which is only a few feet from the road in places.

Our visit was not really a tour, but a training exercise for the volunteers who would be driving the vans and volunteers who would be narrating and answering questions.  Although Joel and I are not part of the interpretive volunteer force we were invited to go as volunteers of the park, thus leaving room on the vans for others during future tours.

Quitoboquito is a very beautiful and serene place. The pond is fairly shallow and supports an abundance of wildlife including the endangered pupfish and mud turtle.  It is fed by nearby springs which run through a series of small ditches to reach the pond.

The spring was a popular stop between Sonoyta and Yuma on the Camino del Diablo.  It is thought the first European to visit Was Spanish Jesuit priest Eusebio Kino in 1698.

 The area has been used for agriculture and roughly in 1860 Andrew Dorse settled in the region and expanded the pond.  There were evidence pomegranite stumps and berms were crops grew at one time.

 The head stone marks one of the earlier settlers who was french and is thought to have established a store for weary travelers.
The park is working to keep the pond in its natural state because it is such an important landmark for wildlife. The cotton wood tree in the picture above started to lean and the roots were effecting the intigrity of the pond and it started to leak.  The breach has been fixed.

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