As trails and outdoor recreation coordinator with the Payson Parks, Recreation and Tourism Department, I would like to express my sincere thanks on behalf of our department to the following people/organizations that enabled us recently to finally construct the Payson Area Trails System (PATS) Goat Camp Ruins trail and protect this special archaeological site off of Tyler Parkway:
• The PATS Volunteers and Rim Country Chapter of the Arizona Archaeological Society (RCCAAS) volunteers for their labor in trail construction;
• Archaeologists Penny Minturn, Denise Ryan and Scott Wood for their expertise regarding site development and protection;
• Chelsea Muise and Jeff Leonard of the Payson Ranger District for their trail construction management, equipment and labor;
• Joe Longbotham for the donation of timbers used to construct trail steps;
• Ty Chilson of Payson Fence for construction of the protective fencing around the Goat Camp Ruins site, which included a significant donation of labor and materials;
• Buzz Walker and Scott from the Payson Water Department for providing boulders along Tyler Parkway to secure the new PATS trail for non-motorized use only;
• Last, but not least, the Holbrook Pyle Foundation for their generous grant to the RCCAAS, which then was used by RCCAAS to pay for the protective fencing around the site.
Without the involvement of all of these parties, this project would not have been possible.
I encourage people in the community to experience this new, short section of PATS trail that passes through the Goat Camp Ruins and connects with the Houston Trail to the north. It is a beautiful addition to our PATS system and will include a side interpretive trail through the ruins themselves in the near future.