Explore EAC Discovery Park’s Nature’s Hideaway Trail System

Contributed Photo: EAC’s Discovery Park Campus invites the public to discover its Nature’s Hideaway Trail System.

By Paul Anger/EACDPC

THATCHER — Eastern Arizona College’s Discovery Park Campus [EACDPC] invites the community to visit and enjoy its Nature’s Hideaway Trail system.  The four-mile, nature preserve trail system on the 120-acre campus offers an outdoor experience for everyone.  

“With the beautiful weather and cooler temperatures, mornings and evenings are a great time to get out and get healthier by walking, running, or mountain biking without having to worry about cars, crossing roads, or going nowhere on an indoor treadmill,” said EACDPC director, Paul Anger. “As a bonus, hikers are guaranteed to see a variety of native animals and vegetation along the trails.”

Contributed Photo

Those walking and hiking through the trails will be surprised by the variety of native vegetation and wildlife in the area, from desert scenery with hawks, roadrunners, and quail (and possibly javelina and coyotes in the distance) to the cool green riparian areas with great horned owls, western coots and a variety of colorful songbirds that rest in the reeds at different times of the year.  It is a native area, so visitors are cautioned to watch their step – all of the trails are at least eight feet wide so you can keep your distance in case you happen to come across one of our local reptile friends soaking in the sun.  

Runners will love the diversity of terrains along the 5k route which includes winding desert trails, sandy wash crossings, straightaways, and sloping and steep hills (if you choose). There are also several shade areas and benches along the way.  

Mountain bike enthusiasts are welcome and will also love the challenge of the varying terrains and the beauty of the area.

All the trails are native-soil dirt paths that are wide and cleared regularly but are subject to weather.  The trails are open from dawn to dusk, and no motorized vehicles are allowed. Dogs and even horses are welcome, but visitors are asked to keep all dogs on leashes for safety and peace of mind of all visitors.

Come and discover what Nature’s Hideaway at EAC’s Discovery Park offers you! 

Current trail information and any warnings for visitors are posted on a kiosk just inside the Campus gate on the Safford Walking Trail along Discovery Park Boulevard. For more information on EAC’s Discovery Park Campus and Nature’s Hideaway trail system, call (928) 428-6260.