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Arizona trails experience overcrowding during coronavirus pandemic

"I mean they closed all the gyms, so there's not much else to do. Hiking is just fun, good to be outdoors it's a nice day," Samantha Horn said.

PHOENIX — Arizona native Meghan McCain posted a series of tweets calling out State 48 and the proximity hikers are to each other on popular valley trails. 

As a resident now leaving in the Big Apple she tells 12 News, she just doesn't want to see extreme measures put into place because we're not practicing the CDC's recommendation to social distance ourselves.

Social Distancing: is the biggest way to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. While Arizonans aren't under a "shelter in place" order we should practice good habits especially when it comes to outdoor activities.

We know "one person can ruin it for everybody" so to steer clear of unnecessary trail closures, we've got to follow what's now the new protocol.

"I mean they closed all the gyms, so there's not much else to do. Hiking is just fun, good to be outdoors it's a nice day," Samantha Horn said.

Hikers are herding up trails like Camelback Mountain and Piestewa Peak, not panicked about potential germs.

"I have to go to stores and stuff like that I feel like there's less exposure out here," she added.

Samantha Horn heeding advice and staying socially distant, the message McCain hopes all hikers hear.

"All the pictures I saw are people crammed together and just working in New York, the trend that we saw went from a few hundred cases to more than 8-thousand," she said.

McCain sharing a similar sentiment to Doctor Kevin Stephan who agrees, outdoor activities are good for the soul but social distancing is the key.

"If you're packing onto a hilltop trail or you're congregating in the parking lot or hanging out in the public restrooms, and you're touching park benches and then you know touching your face and not washing your hands in those areas, they are more high risk for transmitting the coronavirus," Dr. Stephan said.

But by the dozens, people are definitely still enjoying the valley of the sun.

"I think maybe that's part of the good thing that's coming out of this, people getting outdoors, it's good people don't feel so cooped up," a hiker added.

Maricopa County Parks and Rec representatives tell us, there are no plans to close popular trails they just ask that you respect the rules in place by the CDC, so that we can all get through this one step, at a time.

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