4WD Adventures
4wd Adventures

Mountain Biking Adventures

Biking Adventures

Hiking Adventures

Hiking Adventures

Quick Trip Reports

I'm excited to announce my new book, Kokopelli Harvest, has been published. Click here for more details.

Who are the Experience Arizona Adventurers?

Matt Marine

Matt Marine is an Arizona resident who loves exploring Arizona's wonderful outdoor adventures. To find out more about Matt, click the link below.

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Cat-Dog is my faithful trail companion. Her real name is Cammie. Why do I call her Cat-Dog?

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Tobey Schmidt

Although I come from the flat lands of Indiana, I now call Arizona home where I love to rock climb, bike, backpack, paddle—and photograph it all. I can’t wait to share my adventures with the readers of Experience Arizona!


See Intern Page for previous interns

It's a Jeep Thing
Jeep people are awesome, but we do have our idiosyncrasies. Join me as we look at the humorous side of owning and loving Jeeps.

Feature Adventures
Want to try something different? These stories showcase a wide varitey of unique adventures that allow you to experience them first hand!

My first book. It's a mystery called Devil's Moon and has already received outstanding reviews. Set in Sedona, Devil's Moon offers anyone who enjoys a good mystery (or who just loves Arizona) a great read.

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Outdoor Adventures based on Offroad Exploration!

Arizona N2O - The Lighter Side of Experience Arizona

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Do you know your Aizona trails? Figure out where I am in Arizona and win some cool stuff!

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Click to explore Arizona ghost towns and mines


Read the Experience Arizona Disclaimer before attempting any of our adventures. Check with local authorities (FS, BLM, etc.) before heading out on any adventures for updates road conditions, closures, etc.

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Road Closures

Trails and roads listed within this site may be closed at any time by the Forest Service, private property owners or other governmental agencies. It is your responsibility to verify state of trail prior to attempting to run it.

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New Adventures


Click here for the latest 4WD Adventure

Mountain Biking

Click here for the latest Biking Adventure


Click here for the latest Hiking Adventure

Arizona Authors (fiction)

Whether you're looking for a great mystery, romance or a young adult novel, local Arizona authors have it all. Not only does Arizona offer some awesome outdoor adventures and beauty, but we also have some truly fabulous writers. Below are Arizona authors that you may enjoy.

I am just beginning to populate this page. If you are a writer living in Arizona and have a book about (or set in) Arizona, contact me for consideration.

Note: If you're looking for non-fiction books about Arizona history or adventures, click here.

Arizona Fiction Writers (in alphabetical order)

Mike Alvarez

Mike is a native Arizonan, who has been writing for over thirty years. His stories, poems, and articles have appeared in such publications as the Arizona Daily Star and Writer's Digest. A number of his short stories have appeared in several anthologies, including his Writer’s Digest award-winning story, "The Human Element," which was included in the short fiction anthology: Computer Legends, Lies and Lore (Ageless Press, 1994).

Mike has published two Nick Madrid mysteries, Deliver Us From Evil and The Last Place God Made. His other books include The Treasure of the Santa Ritas, a young adult mystery novel and the suspense thriller, Kino's Gold. He has also published a book about writers and their craft, Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Writers.

Mike is on the writing faculty of Pima Community College, where he has taught writing since 1990. He is a member of the Arizona Mystery Writers and the Society of Southwestern Authors.

Kino's Gold

Deep in the Santa Rita Mountains lies a treasure trove of gold and silver worth billions, buried for over three hundred years. Richard Hatchfield arrives at the top-secret computer installation where he works and discovers that three of his coworkers have been murdered. Before notifying the police, Hatch finds a vital clue. Hatch's own seven-year-old daughter is kidnapped and used as a pawn in a last desperate attempt to stop Hatch and his friends from finding the fortune in gold. The long trail of corpses and mayhem leads everyone deep into the Santa Rita Mountains, where all the forces converge and explode in a shattering, unforgettable climax .

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Robert L. Hunton

Robert L. Hunton is the author of novels of mystery and adventure for young readers, including the Borderlands Trilogy—Gift of the Desert Dog (2010), Secrets of the Medicine Pouch (2012), and Coyote-meeter’s Abyss: Adventure in the Borderlands (2012).

Hunton’s career as a middle school teacher in the Colchester, Vermont School District spanned thirty-two years, during which time he taught 7th and 8th grade language arts/social studies lessons on topics as diverse as cartoon storyboards, plains Indian winter counts, and medieval castle construction, in places extending beyond the classroom—under a cantilevered rock on a mountainside, in the sanctuary of old barns and covered bridges, or in the woods surrounding Fort Ticonderoga on Lake Champlain, where he walked with his students in the footsteps of Montcalm, Washington, and Ethan Allen.

You can visit Robert at: http://www.robertlhunton.com/

Gift of the Desert Dog

A twelve year-old reservation boy, who feels lost and unwanted, makes a last valiant attempt to redeem himself in the eyes of his family and community. The danger and high adventure never stops for Danny Rivas and grandfather, Joseph, as they encounter ruthless drug smugglers, climb treacherous mountain passes, solve the mysteries of ancient petroglyphs, and come face-to-face with the powerful spirits of their people. It’s a quest to discover their roots, gain a glimpse into the tribe’s future, and find salvation together at the place where I’itoi, the first O’odham, walked Mother Earth.

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Secrets of the Medicine Pouch

At the death bed of Jonathan Luhya Gray Horse, great chief among all the O’odham, old Joseph learns of a lost manuscript, The Book of the Ancients, secreted away by missionary priests ages past. Gray Horse warns Joseph of  impending disaster for the O’odham people if the sacred text is not located and returned to tribal leaders.

Joseph also discovers the importance of the medicine bag his grandson Danny received earlier——a gift from Gray Horse. He must warn Danny of the power he possesses, and teach him to control the pouch’s mysterious contents.

Danny, his friend, Diego ‘Digs’ Ramirez, and Joseph begin a desperate search for the manuscript, exploring hidden canyons and isolated villages on a quest to save the O’odham people from terrifying destruction.

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Mary Ann Hutchison

Hailing from the Midwest, Mary Ann Hutchison is a transplanted Wisconsinite who spent over 40 years in the legal field as: a legal secretary, Administrative Assistant for the Pima County Sheriff’s Department, Courtroom Clerk and Judicial Administrative Assistant for the Pima County Superior Court.

After retiring she began to seriously put words on paper and writes short stories, memoirs, middle-grade, and suspense stories.

Visit Mary Ann at: www.bloomincane.com

Cascabel - Treachery's Reward

The wide-open western frontier in 1865 is the backdrop for murder and revenge. A young man’s manic need to avenge the deaths of his family is aided by an Apache woman warrior, who is skilled in the art of war and killing; she becomes his teacher and his lover. Although they both knew that one day he’d leave her to avenge his family, he wasn’t prepared for the day she and their son left him.

Murderers seek the anonymity of driving cattle and become prey, venom replaces guns, knives and ropes as a weapon, and catacombs hide the bodies of the wrongdoers.

El Cascabel (Spanish for rattlesnake) was a part of daily living in the mid-1860s Southwest. Cowboys or settlers, cattle or horses—neither man nor animal was safe. No one suspected murder when death visited, with snakebite as a calling card.

This novella is available from Open Press Books (www.openpressbooks.com) and is also an
e-book on Amazon.com.

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Forged by their love of music and their dream, their teen friendship is tight. All Moochi, Chico, Ladybug and Turo have to do is work hard and save money, and they’ll be able to leave their small Arizona town to take part in the International Mariachi Conference in Tucson. No worries, until the strength of their friendship is tested and then shaken by unforeseen problems that shatter their security and trust, forcing them to deal with an intolerance they've never felt before.  The answers they need may lie in the desert that surrounds their world and has always offered them peace as well as danger. 

This Young Adult novel is available from Open Press Books (www.openpressbooks.com). The e-book version is available on Amazon’s Kindle and Barnes and Noble’s Nook.

In 2011 it was chosen by the Tucson Unified School District for use in its English as a Second Language program.

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J.A. Jance

J.A. Jance has a long history in Arizona. She grew up in the small southern Arizona town of Bisbee, graduating from high school in 1962. From there, she went on to college, obtaining degrees in English and Secondary Education. She taught English for two years in Tucson, then was the K-12 librarian in Sells for another five years.

After a rough marriage to an alcoholic husband, she was divorced, raising two children by herself and selling life insurance full time. Her first books were written between 4 a.m and 7 a.m.

Now, years later. She's a New York Times best selling author who has numerous mystery and thriller series set in Arizona. Her work includes the Joanna Brady books set in southeastern Arizona where she grew up, and the Ali Reynolds books, set in Sedona, AZ. In addition, the Walker series are set in the Tohono O’Odham reservation, west of Tucson.

You can visit J.A. Jance at: http://www.jajance.com

The Walker Series

A predator is free to kill again–and hour by hour, he draws closer: After only six years in prison, Andrew Carlisle has ben released. A brilliant psychopath convicted of the brutal torture-murder of a Papago (Tohono O’Odham) Indian girl, he is free once more to prowl the Arizona desert to feed his insatiable hunger for blood and fear . . .and revenge.

A teacher on the Tohono O’Odham reservation, Diana Ladd’s testimony once helped put Andrew Carlisle behind bars. And now the terrified young widow can’t ignore the dire peril foretold in dark, mystical omens and ancient Papago lore: a hunter is stalking Diana Ladd and her son . . . and his hour is at hand.

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The J.P. Beaumont Series

The little girl was found with her pink nightgown twisted around her throat. She was only five. The woman who came to the funeral and threw a single rose on the little girl’s coffin was alive and beautiful. . .the kind of beautiful that Homicide Detective J. P. Beaumont couldn’t resist. 

Beau saw the little girl’s battered body. And he saw the insane eyes of the “Reverend” who ran Faith Tabernacle where little children were beaten and punished for the sake of salvation.

J. P. Beaumont was certain he had his man . . . as certain as he was of the beautiful woman he wanted to spend his life with. But lurking in the dark corners of this bizarre case was not just a demented mind obsessed with murder . . . not just a series of murders about to happen . . . but secrets so deadly, so close to Beaumont’s life, that even a street-tough cop could die guessing.

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The Joanna Brady Series

Life is good for Joanna Brady in the small desert community of Bisbee. She has Jenny, her adored nine-year-old daughter, and solid, honest, and loving husband, Andy, a local lawman who’s running for Sheriff of Cochise County. But her good life explodes when a bullet destroys Andy Brady’s future and leaves him dying beneath the blistering Arizona sun.

The police brass claim that Andy was dirty–up to his neck in drugs and smuggling–and that the shooting was a suicide attempt. Joanna knows a cover-up when she hears one . . . and murder when she sees it. But her determined efforts to track down an assassin and clear her husband’s name are placing herself and Jenny in serious jeopardy. Because, in the desert, the truth can be far more lethal than a rattler’s bite.

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The Ali Reynolds Series

The end of her high-profile broadcasting career came too soon for TV journalist Alison Reynolds—bounced off the air by executives who wanted a "younger face." With a divorce from her cheating husband of ten years also pending, there is nothing keeping her in L.A. any longer. Cut loose from her moorings, Ali is summoned back home to Sedona, Arizona, by the death of a childhood friend. Once there she seeks solace in the comforting rhythms of her parents' diner, the Sugarloaf Café, and launches an on-line blog as therapy for others who have been similarly cut loose.

But when threatening posts begin appearing, Ali finds out that running a blog is far more up-close and personal than sitting behind a news desk. And far more dangerous. Suddenly something dark and deadly is swirling around her life . . . and a killer may be hunting her next. .

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Jude Johnson

Jude Johnson has been enamored of all things historical since childhood. Follow the adventures of the Welsh immigrant Jones family during the wildest days in the Arizona Territory through the Dragon & Hawk novel trilogy: Dragon & Hawk, Out of Forgotten Ashes, and (coming in July 2012) Dragon's Legacy.

Or step onto the pitching deck of a British frigate during the Napoleonic Wars through the short story, Within The Mist.

You can even read about the real immigrants from Wales in her nonfiction book: Cactus Cymry--Influential Welsh in the Southern Arizona Territory. History isn't boring when recounted by a storyteller.

You can visit Jude at: www.jude-johnson.com

Dragon & Hawk

Evan is a Red Dragon of Wales, determined to get his brothers out of the copper mines of Bisbee, Arizona Territory by any means. But when a mysterious Mexican healer known to the Apache as Hawk Sister comes into his life, adventure, heartbreak, and love follow…

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Out of Forgotten Ashes

Evan Jones thought his troubles were over in 1886 Arizona, but sometimes a man’s past resurges with a vengeance…

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Matthew Marine

Matt has always enjoyed writing, which probably comes from his love of reading. Not surprisingly, his favorite books are mysteries and thrillers. Give him a good mystery and you won’t see him for a couple of days.

In 2004, he began freelancing for Arizona Highways magazine as a contributing writer, followed by a humor column in Irish Dance Magazine. No, he can’t dance a lick; remember, it was a humor column.

Then he got a brilliant idea: he was going to write his own novel. One full of all the action, mystery and suspense he craved. It was going to be easy. All he had to do was scribble some words together and bam, his book would be born. Yeah, right. Although it took a few years and he lost a great deal of hair in the process, Devil's Moon lives!

But that’s not the end of the story. Matt’s hard at work on his next novel. His continuing goal is to combine his love of Arizona and writing into the perfect mystery/suspense novel. He is a member of the Arizona Mystery Writers and the Society of Southwestern Authors.

Kokopelli Harvest

Central American rainforest: decades of research by pharmaceutical companies result in a drug capable of preventing many of the world’s deadliest diseases. It is never brought to market.

Southern Arizona desert: Mexican illegal immigrants are disappearing – hundreds vanishing without a trace. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agent Jason Holt rescues a group of terrified immigrants from a ruthless human trafficker and is unknowingly thrust into a chilling plot of biological terrorism. His only lead is Maria Escobar, a beautiful Mexican agent conducting her own covert investigation. As decaying bodies begin to accumulate in blistering Arizona desert, Holt finds he doesn’t know who he can trust. The only thing he’s sure of is that he’s in a race against time to prevent a madman from fulfilling his apocalyptic vision. If he fails, it means humanity’s extinction.

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Devil's Moon

Secrets shrouded in a tourist town

An FBI agent tortured by his past

A murder the local police don’t want solved

Sedona, Arizona: A young woman is found mutilated in a police officer’s basement, his confession scrawled on the wall above his lifeless body. The local police rule the case a murder-suicide, but the dead officer’s sister isn’t convinced. She persuades rundown FBI Agent Stuart Ransom to conduct an off-the-books investigation. With her help, Ransom realizes that the police appear to be hiding the truth behind the gruesome murder. Now he must question everything—from the case to his own beliefs—before his past becomes the killer’s next target.

Some small town secrets are best left alone

"Matt Marine has written a terrific thriller.  A sexual psychopath draws a troubled FBI agent into a series of murders.  The search for truth brings the agent horrifyingly close to his own worst nightmare… and it will keep readers on edge right up to the finish. Memorable characters and skillful plotting in some of Arizona's most intriguing settings." - James C. Mitchell, Shamus Award-nominated author of the forthcoming OUR LADY OF THE NORTH

J Carson Black, Author of The Shop, says Devil's Moon is "Fast-paced yet beautifully evocative, DEVIL'S MOON is a thriller that will keep you guessing until the very end."

Devil's Moon will be available in local book stores soon. You can order a a hard copy (or Kindle version) now from Amazon, Barnes & Noble or from Matt's website.

For more information, visit Matt's website at: www.mattmarine.com

Click here to order Devil's Moon from Amazon.

Click here to order Devil's Moon from Barnes & Noble.

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