Spotlight

  • How Tumamoc Hill balances popularity with preservation

    Sunday, November 11, 2018
    How Tumamoc Hill, a Tucson hiking hotspot, balances its popularity with preservation Linda Valdez, Arizona Republic Published 6:05 a.m. MT Nov. 11, 2018 Opinion: How do you protect fragile history and important research in a place with 1,000 visitors a day? By making it more accessible. Tumamoc Hill is a beloved Tucson landmark with an existential challenge: How to balance its popularity with hikers and its role as a living scientific laboratory. Benjamin Wilder, Tumamoc’s new director, has some interesting insights that could benefit wild and beautiful places statewide that are in danger of... Read More
  • Benjamin Wilder Named New Director at Tumamoc Hill

    Thursday, October 18, 2018
    Ben Wilder, director of the Desert Laboratory, wants to create a public display of fossils, like the packrat midden he’s holding, near the facility on Tumamoc Hill. Ron Medvescek / Arizona Daily Star  What does it take to run one of the most anthropologically, ecologically, gastronomically and culturally important places in Tucson and beyond? Just ask Benjamin Wilder, the new director of Tumamoc Hill. The area surrounding Tumamoc Hill is the longest continuously inhabited site in the United States, with evidence of maize cultivation from over 4,000 years ago. This was a leading factor in the... Read More
  • New Journal focused on Desert Discovery

    Saturday, December 2, 2017
    Dear friends of the Desert Laboratory, I am pleased to announce the release of a new on-line, peer reviewed, open access journal, The Proceedings of the Desert Laboratory. This scholarly endeavor aims to continue the over 100 years of foundational desert research on Tumamoc Hill initiated by the Carnegie Desert Botanical Laboratory in 1903. This journal will be a space to feature the highest caliber research on arid environments. With it, I am exploring a new model that best fits the digital age – on-line, open access, and on demand. This is a movement away from pay walls and the discriminatio... Read More
  • App Gives New Perspective to Walk Up Tumamoc Hill

    Tumamoc Tour Features Image, Image © Paul Mirocha
    Monday, September 11, 2017
    Do you know why there is a boathouse in the middle of the desert on Tumamoc Hill, or why ants are commonly found near barrel cacti? Can you identify Tumamoc's namesake plant or explain the historical significance of the rock fence that circles the mesa at the top? If you answered no, you're not alone. Thousands of visitors walk Tumamoc's paved path each year, but few are aware of the ecological and archaeological value of the site. The University of Arizona’s College of Science hopes to change that with a new mobile app. "So many people already love Tumamoc Hill but are not aware of its hi... Read More
  • Change in Hours

    Monday, August 28, 2017
    Tumamoc Hill Walker Hours Extended and App Created TUCSON, Ariz. — Tumamoc Hill has increasingly become an important destination for Tucsonen’s looking for a great workout and a break from the city. To better accommodate this use, Tumamoc is undertaking a few changes to both enhance the walking experience and preserve the plants, animals, historic structures and scientific research occurring there. Tumamoc is an 860-acre ecological reserve and U.S. National Historic Landmark owned and operated by the University of Arizona in partnership with Pima County. Beginning Monday, Sept. 5, the Universi... Read More

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