BISBEE — Cochise County has announced the opening of a new, two mile multi-use trail around the Palominas Recharge Project located on State Route 92 just west of Palominas Elementary School.

Camila Rochin, county public information officer, stated in a press release, “Residents of Palominas and the greater Hereford area now have access to yet another recreational opportunity in their neighborhood.

“After months of planning and development, the trail is open to hikers, strollers, bikes and horseback riding on the county’s 285 acre recharge property. The public now has access to a safe and scenic landscape for exercise and fresh air.”

The multi-use trail is open for daytime use only and no motorized vehicles are allowed on the property.

Rochin added, “The main access to the trail is from Palominas Road about one-quarter-mile west of the school. This access has a parking area and gate to accommodate horse trailers and regular traffic. A pedestrian gate for hikers and mountain bikers is also located along Highway 92 approximately 800 feet west of the elementary school.”

The Nature Conservancy holds a conservation easement on the parcel of the flood control and recharge project, which conserves an estimated 24 acre feet a year of groundwater that will not be pumped due to precluded development, according to the Cochise Conservation and Recharge Network.

“The views of the Huachuca Mountains to the west and the Mule Mountains to the east are spectacular throughout this mesquite and grasslands landscape,” said Mark Apel, environmental projects coordinator for Cochise County. “We wanted to provide yet one more opportunity for the public in this area to safely recreate and learn about the county’s recharge efforts, where we’re capturing stormwater to help sustain flows in the San Pedro River.”

It follows on the heels of the shorter, educational walking path around the eastern end of the recharge project on the east side of Palominas Road. The facility is designed to recharge up to 98 acre feet a year via its large detention basin and 13 recharge cells, though actual volume of recharge is dependent on the amount of rainfall each year.

For questions, contact the county at 432-9306 or email mapel@cochise.az.gov. For information on the project, visit the CCRN website, https://ccrnsanpedro.org/palominas.