Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan

Where are we in the process?

On October 12, 2022 The Arizona Outdoor Recreation Coordinating Commission (AORCC) recommended approval of the 2023 SCORP to the Arizona State Parks Board.

On October 20, 2022 the Arizona State Parks Board approved the final SCORP.

The 2023 SCORP has been posted ( while the National Park Service (NPS) reviews it to ensure it meets all requirements.

Arizona State Parks and Trails is working with the Arizona Office of Tourism and the Director of Outdoor Recreation to plan and implement the 2023 SCORP.  We will be kicking off this effort in 2024. Stay tuned for more information!

What happens next?

The SCORP guides the distribution of the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), the Arizona State Parks and Trails Heritage Fund and the State Lake Improvement Fund (SLIF) in Arizona.

Then comes the next big challenge - implementing the SCORP priorities, goals, objectives and strategies. In 2024, we will invite partners to collaborate and address the issues, challenges and opportunities identified in the 2023 SCORP. If you and your agency or organization want to work with Arizona State Parks and Trails and other partners across the state to “move the needle” and work to improve outdoor recreation sites and opportunities in Arizona, email

Check out this list of outdoor recreation resources we collected during the SCORP process and public comment period!

Blue Sky Ideas

We still want to hear more about your "blue sky ideas" to enhance and improve outdoor recreation in Arizona! A “blue sky” idea means there are no limits on your creativity. Please share your honest ideas about how we can make Arizona an even better place to enjoy outdoor activities!  

To give you an idea, here are a few “blue sky” ideas from our SCORP survey participants….

  • A dark sky state park, with opportunities for tent and RV camping - maybe even cabins with skylights for sky gazing. There could be special events held at this park during astrological events such as meteor showers or lunar eclipses.
  • Quiet Programs – Outings with elements of mindfulness and forest bathing to help participants feel stress relief and inner peace in nature, ranging from hour-long Quiet Walks, to day-long Quiet Retreats, to even overnight Quiet Campouts. 

How do we reach out to the public for the SCORP?

To inform this plan, data was collected from Arizona recreators beginning on October 1, 2021 and ending on February 28, 2022 in two different ways.

  • We received more than 1,300 completed surveys from members of the recreating public who wanted to let us know about their recreation experiences and opinions. The survey link was available on this webpage. Thanks to everyone who participated. 
  • More than 5,000 surveys were completed by selected Arizona households.  Because of the methods used to collect this information, we will be able to better understand recreation in Arizona as a whole and by regions.

We also asked recreation providers to weigh in.

Findings from the surveys above give us information about:

  • How many Arizonans are participating in particular activities;
  • What kinds of outdoor spaces people are using;
  • Benefits and barriers to outdoor recreation;
  • Whether recreators needs are being met;
  • Funding priorities; and
  • Other information.

This helps us to tell the story of outdoor recreation in Arizona right now.

We also ask Arizonans to review the draft of the SCORP before it is finalized and approved to let us know their thoughts.

Who else have we talked to?

Arizona State University (ASU) also talked to a group of 77 stakeholders across the state. These are individuals who recreate outdoors, employees and volunteers who work with or for agencies and organizations that provide outdoor recreation opportunities, non-profits and other organizations that have missions related to outdoor recreation, and private and for-profit interests. 

A subgroup of these stakeholders worked with ASU to delve more deeply into the issues facing outdoor recreation in Arizona and summarize the information from these discussions.

Opportunity for public review and comment

A draft of the SCORP was posted online on August 3, 2022 and a press release was sent out. The public, stakeholders and partners were invited to read the draft and submit comments by August 31, 2022. Information about the public comment period was distributed to partners, stakeholders, user groups and others via email. Sample social media posts and newsletter notifications were also sent to partners to distribute to their networks. Organizations such as the Arizona Parks and Recreation Association, the Arizona Preservation Foundation, the Arizona Office of Tourism, the Network for Arizona Trails and others distributed this information via social media, newsletters and email blasts to their members and followers.

What is SCORP?A flowchart of the process for statewide planning

The Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan (SCORP) serves as a guide for all public outdoor recreation in urban and rural neighborhoods, cities and regions for a given state. Each state is tasked with identifying outdoor recreation issues of statewide importance once every five years to be eligible for Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) dollars. 

How else can I get involved?

Tell us about your experiences!

  • Work with Arizona State Parks and Trails to implement SCORP objectives and strategies.

Please contact Dawn Collins at for more information about SCORP. 


What are some of the topics identified by special interest groups? Listen below to a podcast episode with Ability 360 for an example!

The outdoors is for everyone, and on this special episode of Arizona State Parks' podcast, we talk with Kaitlyn Verfuerth and Laurie Singer about outdoor recreation accessibility. Kaitlyn and Laurie are are leading advocates for people of all abilities, and through their work with Ability 360, are making a noticeable impact within the community. Check out their program 360Outdoors program in action!

We wanted to share Ability 360's work after speaking with their group on Arizona State Parks & Trails' Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan (SCORP). This plan is created every five years, after collecting data from the SCORP survey to recommend funding priorities and actions to improve and maintain Arizona’s outdoor recreation opportunities. Basically, where should land managers spend money to make outdoor recreation better for everyone? SCORP involvement for our agency also means working with diverse partners like Ability 360 and other special interest groups throughout the state!



SCORP Related Successes Since 2018

We would like to highlight some of the initiatives, programs or projects that our partners accomplished linked to the 2018-2022 SCORP priorities….

  • Natural Restorations - We remove trash & graffiti from outdoor recreation and wilderness areas, and revitalize natural areas through replanting projects. We accomplish our mission by hosting volunteer cleanup events throughout the year for community members, including youth volunteers, and we manage and support a Dedicated Restoration Team with contracted Military Veterans who conduct restorations beyond the reach of most volunteers. More and more studies are showing the benefits of time spent in nature for Military Veterans. For more information, go to
    • Addresses the following SCORP 2018 priorities: 
      • Preservation and Conservation
  • Red Spring Trail - This project  provided a much needed, safe and maintained recreational opportunity for serious dirt bike riders in Southern Arizona by creating the first legal 25 mile single-track trail system, which can be used by motorcycles, mountain bikes, equestrian & hikers. Furthermore had a positive economic impact to the towns of Amado and Tubac. This project was completed through a partnership between the Trail Riders of Southern Arizona (TRS) and the Coronado National Forest, Nogales Ranger District. TRS club members contributed 1,600 hours (valued at $62.6K) of volunteer support and the partnership continues today with annual organized trail trash cleanup and maintenance days. For more information, go to
    • Addresses the following SCORP 2018 priorities: 
      • Accessibility and Inclusion
      • Collaboration and Partnerships
      • Funding

      • Verde Valley Public School Mountain Bike Clubs - Verde Valley Wheel Fun (FUN) operates after-school mountain bikes clubs at 13 of the 19 Verde Valley public schools, providing opportunities for many students who may not otherwise have the resources, time or money to spend on these activities. The clubs ride on National Forest trails near Camp Verde, Cottonwood, Cornville, Clarkdale and Sedona. But FUN’s programs are so much more - they’re about education, access, land stewardship, movement, health, wellness, nutrition and changing behavior outcomes by offering healthy alternatives and encouraging healthy lifetime habits. Over 160 students annually participate in these after-school clubs, and must meet identified grade standards. FUN also runs Spring, Summer and Fall mountain bike camps and has built the first two mountain bike skills parks on public school property in the state of Arizona. In addition, FUN engages students in educational and volunteer events at school sites and on trails.The group has also created a scholarship fund for participating students. For more information, go to

    • Addresses the following SCORP 2018 priorities: 
      • Accessibility and Inclusion
      • Collaboration and Partnerships
      • Funding
  • Arizona Alpine Trail - A 770 plus mile multi-use OHV trail connecting multiple towns in central-eastern Arizona. The connected cities will provide services to OHV visitors through food, lodging, local tourist attractions, and OHV services. For more information, go to
    • Addresses the following SCORP 2018 priorities: 
      • Funding

Thanks to our partners for sharing their success stories!

If you have other successes to share linked to 2018-2022 SCORP priorities, send them to


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