Oak Creek Social Trails and Erosion

Since 2020, NCDE has worked with Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ), the U.S.F.S. Coconino- Red Rocks, National Forests Foundations (NFF), Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT), and others on managing erosion from social trail use in Oak Creek Canyon. NCDE worked with ADEQ to assess all potential work areas along 89a in Oak Creek Canyon and has documented over 400 social trails and erosive areas relating to visitation. NCDE work with the USFS and ADEQ to develop low impact design structures (LID) and best management practices (BMPs) in managing erosion while addressing concentrated visitor impact. This project has gone through multiple phases of work where with the help of conservation crews (Ancestral Lands Conservation Crew, Arizona Conservation Crew, and American Conservation Experience), we have successfully treated and rehabbed hundreds of erosive areas throughout the Oak Creek Canyon watershed. This is a diverse project working with multiple agencies and dozens of stake holders. Since the project commenced, the project team has won an award from Arizona Forward for Natural Environmental Preservation (2022) and National Association of Environmental Professionals for Environmental Management, Stewardship, Conservation, and/or Protection (2023).

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