Sonoita State Natural Area
Right next to Patagonia Lake State Park is a wilderness area where one can hike (or ride on horseback) for miles. We selected a 3.5-mile loop that started at the west end of the lake at the spillway and followed the Blackhawk Canyon Trail along the spillway creek to Sonoita Creek, then returned on the other side of the creek on the Sonoita Creek Trail. It was a beautiful walk. After descending from the parking area and crossing the spillway, we climbed to a highland above Spillway Creek before descending again to the creek level to cross before ascending again to the highlands. Lots of small birds and ducks in the creek bed. It is amazing how completely alone we felt out there — except for the occasional Border Patrol helicopter.