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Q&AZ: How Many State Parks Does Arizona Have?

By Nicholas Gerbis
Published: Monday, August 12, 2019 - 5:05am
Updated: Monday, August 12, 2019 - 8:14am

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Q&AZ is supported in part by Sierra Nevada Brewing Company

Big Room at Kartchner Canverns
Arizona State Parks
The Big Room at Kartchner Caverns State Park.

The U.S. boasted more than 8,500 state parks totaling more than 29,000 square miles as of 2017, according to the National Association of State Park Directors.

One listener wanted to know how Arizona's state parks stack up against the rest of the country.

Arizona State Parks and Trails manages 35 parks covering more than 100 square miles, plus land provided by entities like the Arizona State Land Department, U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management.

That lags behind California's 300 parks, but keeps pace with western states of similar size: Nevada has 27; New Mexico, 35; and Colorado, 42.

Michelle Thompson, chief of communications for Arizona State Parks and Trails, said Arizona parks are notable for their landscapes and natural resources.

"You can do anything from paddleboarding to kayaking, to hiking, backpacking. We have campgrounds and cabins," she said. 

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