Four Forest Restoration (4FRI) Initiative

Four national forests – the Kaibab, Coconino, Apache-Sitgreaves and Tonto – are actively managed in a collaborative initiative to carry out landscape-scale restoration of the ponderosa pine forests in northern Arizona. Various types of restoration work including wildlife habitat improvement, grassland restoration, watershed maintenance, spring restoration, stream channel restoration, trail and road maintenance, road decommissioning as well as thinning and prescribed burning are part of this vast initiative. Arizona Trout Unlimited supports many of these efforts to create sustainable ecosystems hand in hand with sustainable industries.

Arizona Trout Unlimited Tracked Conservation Projects:

Upper East Verde River Watershed Restoration

Working in partnership with Arizona Trout Unlimited, Gila Trout Chapter of TU, Tonto National Forest and Arizona Game and Fish Department, Gila Trout protections are being implemented to ensure the native trout’s recovery.

Christopher Creek R – C Scout/Summer Camp

The overall goal of this project will create a model desert fish habitat and refuge populations of native roundtail chub and longfin dace in the R-C Scout Ranch pond. Once established, this refuge population of Roundtail chub will provide youth recreational fishing opportunities, and nature study. Additionally, we are restoring native Gila Trout in nearby Christopher Creek. These projects will provide improved youth fishing and conservation education opportunities for both the summer campers, as well as Mogollon Rim area youth. The camp is also used for various environmental youth camps, including STEM programs, American Cancer Society, and others.

Black River Landscape Restoration

In the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest, Arizona Trout Unlimited is working to advance forest resiliency and maintain a healthy ecosystem on the Alpine and Springerville Ranger Districts.

Glen Canyon Dam Adaptive Management Plan

The Upper Colorado Basin requires ongoing monitoring and protection of endangered species. Arizona Trout Unlimited is helping to utilize science to identify best practices to manage the land, foster relationships with tribal entities and create a balanced plan of stewardship to ensure a harmonious relationship between recreation and environmental concerns.

C. C. Craigin Watershed (formerly Blue Ridge Reservoir) Protection

Reducing the risk of wildfire and reestablish a fire adapted, resilient, diverse and sustainable forest ecosystem surrounding the City of Payson’s primary water supply. This project is a combined effort between Salt River Project, the Town of Payson, Bureau of Reclamation, Coconino National Forest, National Forest Foundation and Arizona Trout Unlimited to provide actionable mitigation of the risks to the watershed and the surrounding resources.

Native Trout Catch/Release and Recovery Stream Signage

In conjunction with Arizona Game and Fish Department and the US Forest Service, AZTU is working to place informational signage informing anglers of efforts to protect our native trout species.

Position On Native And Wild Non-Native Salmonid Management

Arizona is fortunate to have historic populations of native trout species (Apache, Gila) and many well-established populations of several wild (naturally reproducing) non-native salmonids (Rainbow, Brown, Brook, and Grayling). The conservation of all Arizona’s native trout and wild non-native salmonids is a priority of the Arizona Council of Trout Unlimited (AZTU) and we believe that both native and wild non-native fishes of all salmonid species are important components of the state’s aquatic communities. Both native and wild non-native salmonids have important cultural, recreational, scientific, economic and legacy values.

Citizen Science for Gila Trout

For those anglers targeting Gila Trout in Arizona, the Arizona Game and Fish Department asks that you please take the time to fill out this survey form after each fishing trip targeting Gila Trout. The form collects information on when and where anglers fished for Gila Trout, the type of fishing gear used, and how many fish caught. Filling out this survey is completely voluntary and responses are completely anonymous. The information will be used by the Arizona Game and Fish Department to better manage Gila Trout in Arizona.

The Conservation Committee meets:

Every second Monday of the month
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Contact Joe Miller at for more information or to attend.