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Jun 13, 2012 2:40 PM

Girl Scouts to be first boaters ever on Rose Canyon Lake

MT. LEMMON - The Girl Scouts of Southern Arizona will be first-ever boaters on Rose Canyon Lake when they begin canoe and water rescue training there 10 a.m. Thursday, June 14.

"This is an exciting opportunity for our girls," said Kristen Culliney, chief operating officer of the Girl Scouts of Southern Arizona. "We are honored to be the first youth-oriented group on the lake and hope that what we teach girls will give them a lifelong appreciation for this mountain and our water resources!"

The training was made possible by a rule change enacted by the Arizona Game and Fish Commission last year as allows youth-oriented service programs to use canoes on the lake from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday during the months of June and July. Eligible organizations must have a permit issued by the U.S. Forest Service for such use of the lake by non-motorize watercraft.

"We're gratified that the Girl Scouts will be the first youth-oriented service program to take advantage of this opportunity to learn how to handle watercraft safely and effectively," said Regional Supervisor Raul Vega of Game and Fish in Tucson. "We are sure other qualified groups will do so as well."

Vega noted that this opportunity is not for the public at large, and that entry into the lake for swimming, wading or other devices - such as pool toys as well as float tubes and rafts -- is prohibited.

The seven-acre lake was closed to watercraft upon opening in 1960, and to all entry in 1985, to benefit rainbow trout fishermen. Rose Canyon Lake is at approximately 7,000 feet elevation amid Ponderosa pines, making it a popular summer retreat.

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