U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIORBUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
Old Ag Fields Group Site
This is one of three areas within Las Cienegas NCA used for group events. A popular place for staging group outdoor education and camping events, this 50-acre, undeveloped old agriculture field is naturally converting to mesquite and sacaton grasslands. Located adjacent to Cienega Creek, there is one large cottonwood tree on the west side, offering plenty of shade. The Las Cienegas National Conservation Area (NCA) can be enjoyed year-round since each season provides opportunities to enjoy the unique features of the NCA’s landscape.
The Las Cienegas NCA is located in southern Arizona, west of Tucson. The Old Ag Fields Group Site is the most remote of the three group sites in the NCA, located about eight miles east of State Road 83, along dirt and sandy roads in the “heart” of Las Cienegas NCA.
To access the NCA, travel along State Road 83, turn east near mile marker 40 into the NCA entrance on BLM road marker LC 900 and drive approximately three miles. From there, branch off to the left from LC 900, onto the LC 901 BLM road marker near the Empire Ranch Headquarters and drive approximately five miles north on the LC 901.
This site is designated for group use only on a reservation basis. A Special Recreation Permit is required for group events. Group activities may include camping and horseback riding.
Surrounded by views of the Empire, Rincon, Whetstone and Santa Rita mountains, the site is located across from the Cienega Ranch House. The area is an active grazing pasture for up to 1,500 head of cattle several times a year.
Permits, Fees, Limitations
A Special Recreation Permit (SRP) is required to use the group site from the BLM Tucson Field Office. Applications for a permit must be received by the BLM Tucson Field Office at least six months in advance of the event date. The general fee for an SRP is $5 per person/per day. No other passes or permits are necessary.
A four-wheel drive or high clearance vehicle is not required to access the site. The Old Ag Fields Group Site allows motorized use on the designated roads. There are no wheelchair accessible features or facilities at the site.
Camping and Lodging
Dispersed camping is available on public lands; campers should choose previously disturbed sites to reduce impacts. Several small hotels and bed-and-breakfasts are located in Sonoita and Patagonia. A listing of nearby lodging can be found at the Sonoita-Elgin Chamber of Commerce. Larger lodging facilities are located in Sierra Vista, 35 miles away, and Tucson, approximately 50 miles away.
Food and Supplies
Several convenience stores and restaurants are seven miles south in Sonoita. Major grocery stores are in Sierra Vista and Tucson.
The nearest emergency care is available in Sierra Vista, at the Sierra Vista Regional Health Center. The nearest level 1 trauma care center is in Tucson, at the University Medical Center. Trauma injuries include bone fractures, internal bleeding and brain injuries.
Las Cienegas National Conservation Area