Wilcox Wine Trail
Thursday April 23 - Friday April 24| $50 – $329
Wilcox Wine Trail
& the Chiricahua National Monument
April 23rd-24th, 2020
$329 (Per Person, Based Upon Double Occupancy) $50 (Single Supplement)
Day One: We’ll leave the Valley, with a stop for coffee & goodies, on our way to Tucson, where we’ll enjoy lunch on self. We’ll journey into the heart of U of A’s campus and park on University Boulevard—a great place to stretch our legs. This region is home to so many wonderful little restaurants that it will be hard to choose one. After lunch it’s back on the bus, and we’re off to explore the Wilcox Wine Trail, where we’ll find world class wine, grown and produced in Southeastern Arizona—just a one-hour drive from Tucson. We’ll visit Birds and Barrels Vineyards, owned and operated by Chad and Monica Preston, who purchased their 50 acres in the spring of 2015 and have been clearing land, planting, harvesting and making wine ever since. The focus of Birds and Barrels Vineyards is not only to produce great wine but to offer its consumers an Arizona wine experience. Birds and Barrels is located on the Willcox Bench at an elevation slightly over 4300 feet. Currently they have 10 varietals planted—seven red and three white. The onsite tasting room overlooks the Willcox bench as well as Sulphur Springs Valley to the West with fabulous views of the Dos Cabezas over the vineyard to the North. We’ll taste a flight of five wines at Birds and Barrels, included. Later we’ll visit award winning Zarpara Vineyard, also located on the Willcox Bench. We’ll taste a great selection of white wines and reds in the tasting room, usually all dry. Rather than specializing in a style or region, Zarpara’s wines are produced from varietals that originated in the upper Mediterranean from Spain, across France, to Italy. The tasting room and winery are right there at the vineyard. Rhona or Mark are usually pouring wine in the tasting room, so chances are you get to visit with the owners themselves. We’ll taste a flight of five wines at Zarpara, included. Later we’ll head into Wilcox and check into the Holiday Inn Express, our headquarters for one night. After a refresh, we’re off to enjoy dinner on self at The Double S Steakhouse—a great favorite with the locals, offerings delicious chargrilled burgers, steaks and chicken. Nothing fancy—just good food at a great price.
Day Two: We’ll enjoy breakfast, included at the hotel, then we’re off to explore the “Wonderland of Rocks,” the Chiricahua Mountain Range. This fascinating area is where the Sonoran and Chihuahuan deserts, and the Rocky Mountain and Sierra Madre ranges all meet—a convergence that is rich in animal and plant life. For instance, you’ll find the Ponderosa pine and the Engelmann spruce—representatives of the Rocky Mountains, coexisting with the Soap tree yucca from the Chihuahuan desert. Many millions of years of geologic activity created the pinnacles, columns, spires, and balanced rocks of Chiricahua National Monument. The Apaches called this place “The Land of Standing Up Rocks.” Early afternoon we’ll be back on the bus, headed for home on the Old West Highway, with a stop for lunch on self and plenty of sightseeing along the way. It’s gonna be great!