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Gilbert Riparian Preserve, AZ
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1.4k 128 0 0 official
Description 128 Triplogs  1 Topic
RatedFavorite   Wish List Region
 
0
0
 Phoenix SE
Statistics
Difficulty 0.5    Route Finding
Distance Round Trip 2.5 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1,273 feet
Elevation Gain 3 feet
Accumulated Gain 6 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 1 hour
Kokopelli Seeds 2.53
Course Muli-Loop Hike
Author rally_toad
Descriptions 18
Routes 0
Photos 484
Trips 376 map ( 2,200 miles )
Age 24
Location Boulder City, NV
Photos
Rated Viewed All Mine Friends
4  2015-03-10 The NaviG8R
13  2015-03-04 Digital Sherpa
52  2015-01-06
More Birding/Photography
Outdoor Lover
23  2015-01-05 gummo
11  2014-12-23 gummo
14  2014-12-03 The NaviG8R
12  2014-12-02 gummo
11  2014-11-27 gummo
28  2014-11-25 gummo
43  2014-11-06
Birding / Photography Tri
Outdoor Lover
35  2014-09-28
Birding/Photography Trips
Outdoor Lover
4  2014-08-24 jochal
Page 1,  2,  3,  4,  5 ... 9
Trailhead Forecast
Historical Weather
Radar
Backpack - No
Seasons - ALL
Official Route
 
Alternative Routes
 
Water
Nearby Hikes Area Water Sources
direct air miles away to trailhead
7.4  9L Peak
7.5  Desert Trails Park - Mesa
8.0  Mesa Grande
8.8  Spook Hill - Mesa
8.9  Apache Junction Fissures
9.1  Channel Trail - Usery
[ View More! ]

does this count as hiking? well sorta I guess...
by rally_toad

Ok, so I have been throwing around the idea of posting this as a "hike" for quite some time, being as this preserve is so close to my house, and the fact that I actually go there somewhat often. Well its also an "Important Bird Area", which supports the argument for it being listed on HAZ. The fact that Scottsdale Greenbelt, Rio Salado and other urban hikes are listed on hikearizona also finally persuaded me to go ahead and list this as a hike. That being said, I don't really consider this hiking, more of a city stroll where once in a while you might see something cool.

The Gilbert Water Ranch or Riparian Preserve is a 110 acre preserve,is a series of ponds or "lakes" which are filled with reclaimed water. There are seven ponds in all, as well as a lake that is stocked with fish and where fishing is permitted. This is man-made urban riparian habitat in the middle of the city, and draws lots of interesting birds. Close to 200 species of birds have been reported at the preserve, and according to the preserve website people come from different states and countries to see the sometimes rare birds that can be found at the preserve. I'm not sure how truthful that statement is, but I must say if you are visiting Arizona from elsewhere, PLEASE go to the Grand Canyon, or the Petrified Forest, or the Sky Islands down south, don't waste your time in a silly town like Gilbert. I can't imagine visiting another state to visit an urban, city park. So in conclusion, this is not a destination, but rather a good sunday morning stroll if you live within a few miles.

On to the actual "hike". Well essentially there are various paths that weave in and around the ponds and lake and provide viewing areas for the birds. Some of the more common birds that I've seen are ducks, geese, avocets, great blue herons, and black-necked stilts. I've also seen burrowing owls and some other pretty neat animals there. Other than birds, not much in the way of wildlife. There are Pond Sliders, Bullfrogs, and feral cats, all of which are introduced pests. Supposedly there are native Mud Turtles, and Kingsnakes at the preserve but I am a bit doubtful about that, this is an island habitat surrounded by city, so unless the preserve staff introduced some of the natives I have to question where they came from. You can make a nice easy loop walk by connecting some of the paths, and you might learn a thing or two about desert plants or birds from the informative signs. I'd say you could make a loop of 2-3 miles pretty easily, and on the preserve map they actually have suggestions for routes you might take and the mileage of each route. Once you've had enough, or found that elusive bird, head on back to the parking lot and back home.
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    Directions
    Map Drive
    Water Drinking fountains
    Sun5:22am - 7:40pm
    Preferred Mar, Nov, Feb, Jan → Any
    RoadPaved - Car Okay
    Permit $$
    None

    Directions To hike
    The "trailhead" is basically the Southeast library parking lot, located at Guadalupe and Greenfield Roads in Gilbert.
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.
    page created by rally_toad on Mar 27 2010 8:11 pm
    Since 1996! Member driven since 1996! or

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