arizona ranches


The Las Cienegas National Conservation Area in Arizona includes more than 45,000 acres of rolling grasslands and woodlands that connect several “sky island” mountain ranges and lush riparian corridors.
Located in the heart of the Las Cienegas NCA, the historic Empire Ranch includes a 22-room adobe and wood-frame building which dates to 1870 and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The setting makes it a favorite of classic western film fans. Red River, Duel in the Sun, Hombre, Winchester 73, The Big Country, and many others were filmed on or near the Empire Ranch – still a working cattle ranch to this day.

You can camp in this historic NCA for up to 14 days – just stay at least one-quarter mile from wildlife and livestock watering areas. Check out the two designated primitive camp and picnic areas: Cieneguita Camp Area and Road Canyon Camp.

Video by Bob Wick, BLM

Desert cottontail rabbit (Sylvilagus audubonii), at the Riparian Preserve at Water Ranch, Gilbert, Arizona. This is the most rabbity place I have ever seen. Between the green stuff and the steady supply of mesquite pods from trees in the dense bosques, the rabbits here are abundant, well-fed, fat, and sassy. And they are surprisingly fearless. There are many walkers with dogs, but all of the canine visitors are kept on leashes. These are rabbits that have never felt the thrill of being chased.  


These images were taken in Double Adobe, Arizona on my family ranch. Springtime tends to be windy out here so I wanted to concentrate on this tree to get that really shaky look. The fast moving clouds were a happy byproduct of the breeze and they cleared just enough for the Milky Way to be seen fairly well.
This is 597 (I shot 600 but I pulled out 3 where you could see the headlights from my Jeep as I drove away) photos taken with a D750 and Nikon 14-24 @14mm. F/2.8 ISO 2500, 20 second exposure with 4 seconds between exposures. Edited in Lightroom, merged in QuickTime 7 with the motion effect added in Adobe Premiere.