By Rusty Bradshaw
Sun City resident Art Huseonica got into the record books Dec. 12 when he completed a second leg of hiking the 800-mile Arizona Trail.
The feat made him the oldest person to yo-yo hike the trail, meaning he has made the trek from south to north, then again from north to south. At 67, he is the oldest hiker to complete the 1,600-mile journey. Only two other hikers completed the round trip adventure, both in their 20s, according to Mr. Huseonica.
The Arizona Trail “grit” hike is the latest in a series of adventures for Mr. Huseonica. Others include a hike up the Amazon River, mountain climbing in Idaho and an appearance on the television show hosted by Bear Grylls.
After overcoming the challenges of extreme weather and uncertain water sources, Mr. Huseonica completed the last two miles of his 1,600-mile adventure in the company of four friends, including officials from the Arizona Trail Association.
“I thought the second leg of my extreme hike might be in jeopardy,” said Mr. Huseonica. “The heavy rains at the Utah border forced me to wade through running washes to get to the tailhead.”
This resulted in a five-mile hike that is normally done in a vehicle.
The trek for Mr. Huseonica ended southwest of Sierra Vista where a monument marks the Arizona border with Mexico. He got an interesting welcome, as seven U.S. Border Patrol agents congratulated him on his feat as they patrolled the border fence.
The hike took 22 pounds off Mr. Huseonica’s frame. He plans to get some rest and gain back some of that weight before taping a CBS news story about the Arizona Trail adventure.
Mr. Huseonica lives in Sun City with his wife, Karen Carlsen Huseonica, and is an active member of the Sun City PRIDES and the Sun City Hikers.
Mr. Huseonica was interviewed 3:30 p.m. Dec. 21 at Piestewa Peak by CBS News about his Arizona Trail adventure. The segment aired 6 p.m. Dec. 21 on Phoenix station 3TV and 10 p.m. on Phoenix station CBS 5 and again on 3TV. The segment will also be linked online with Arizona Trail Association and Briana Whitney TV PC: Jim David.