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“Great little state park” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Roper Lake State Park

Roper Lake State Park
101 East Roper Lake Road, Safford, AZ 85546
(928) 428-6760
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Ranked #2 of 10 things to do in Safford
Activities: Fishing, Hiking, Swimming
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Attraction details
Owner description: This 400-acre park has five miles of hiking trails and plenty of water for swimming and fishing.
Phoenix, Arizona
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
17 attraction reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“Great little state park”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2014

A friend and I stopped by here on the way into Safford and we weren't disappointed. The was a great little beach for an Arizona lake, as well as a little hot spring tub, and some nice hiking trails. We saw a ton of different bird species, and the trails offered some really great places to take pictures of Mt. Graham and the surrounding desert.

Visited July 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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39 reviews from our community

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English first
Tucson, Arizona, United States
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Not good for fishing these days”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 10, 2014

We hadn't been to the lake in a long time and heard they upgraded their camp sites with electric and water so decided to return. Hookup sites cost $25 per night. We didn't stay,however, because there literally was no place to park the boat and step out. Due to the drought, there is thick,thick mud all over the perimeter and water so shallow the boat got stuck. We asked if we could put it over by the far side of the swim beach and were told "no" so packed up and left. Until there is more rain, not worth going if you have a boat and want to do any fishing.

Visited June 2014
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Tucson, Arizona
Top Contributor
72 reviews 72 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
88 helpful votes 88 helpful votes
“Simple, Scrubby, Small, and Serene”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 6, 2014

Roper Lake is small, even by Patagonia Lake standards (see my review of Patagonia if you so want to). The area close to Safford is scrubby, flat, and very HOT in the summer--there's sparse shade to be found, so this might be a place to visit in spring or fall. The drive from Tucson takes you through a really neat landscape of teetering boulders, so stop and take pics of them.

Roper Lake is very clean and quiet. One thing I noticed is that none of the cabins suffered from mindless grafitti carvings. The grounds were super clean, and a nice walking path included quaint little bridges around the west side of the lake. The showers are nice, despite having push button water flow with a 5 second burst at a time.

Unless you can reserve the three cabins directly on shore (they're literally booked for a YEAR in advance), the rest of the camp sites (RV, tent, cabin, etc.) are pretty close quarters--so you better be ready to talk to neighbors. Regardless, the cabins have the right mix of ammenities and rustic charm (bring linens, pillows and such, depending on the season).

Camping at Roper is pretty laid back, quiet, and comfortable. There's a boat launch area (only small boats allowed) and the east part of the lake is cleared of reeds enough to fish from shore--but that doesn't mean it's fantastic fishing (although AZSP does stock the lake with a variety of fish--chech the stocking schedule for better chances).

Roper's feature attraction is its artisan hot springs tub (98 degrees or so). A single, simple, concrete hottub resides between the RV/cabins loop and the regular RV sites. Weirdly enough, the water flowing through the hotsprings makes you float as if it were high in salt--but it isn't.

Word to the Wise though--Roper becomes a "party lake" on the weekends, especially in the day use area and the beach area. You may have a hard time getting any hotsprings visits to yourself during the weekends--we actually saw the hottub filled with no less than 10 people at one point--so visiting during the weekdays might be better.

Another really unique bonus is that Safford is just minutes away from Roper Lake, and the town boasts the largest Walmart in Arizona. So if you're smart, pack minimal provisions because you can pick up what you need in town for reasonable prices. Safford itself is a step back in time about 20 years or so, and there are plenty of "Mom-n-Pop" places to grab a homestyle meal, as well as some fast food places.

All in all, Roper Lake is a decent place to visit for a variety of reasons. The cabins are worth the extra expense, if not for the heating/cooling units that offset Arizona's more extreme seasons. Be prepared to RELAX.

Visited April 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lakeside, California
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
19 attraction reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Not what we hoped for”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2014

We drove first to the Dankworth Pond unit of Roper Lake State Park. It costs $7 to get in, we took a look and decided it wasn't worth it so we drove on to the main part of Roper Lake S.P. It looked bigger and more interesting so we paid our money and went in. Pretty disappointing. Not especially pretty or scenic, maybe the fishing was good, but if your just going for a visit to see it, save your money. If you're ever in Santee CA, check out Santee Lakes. It's a similar park only WAY NICER and only costs $3!

Visited February 2014
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Top Contributor
156 reviews 156 reviews
23 attraction reviews
Reviews in 77 cities Reviews in 77 cities
69 helpful votes 69 helpful votes
“Great cabins, going back. ”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2014

Found this park on the internet as it allows 24/7 reserving of sites and cabins. We have camped in many federal and state parks and this is one if the best but for little to no tree shade. We stayed two nights in a delightful cabin, one of eight. At about 2800 ft it's a nice option to northern and central Arizona. This cabin, Roadrunner, had two rooms, one double bed, three bunk beds, a ceiling fan, inside lights, porch light, huge covered porch with swing , outside kitchen with sink, running water, grill built into the counter, fire ring with $7 wood bundles and A WINDOW UNIT HEAT AND AC UNIT! It rained hard the night we were there and it was like we were in a motel but next to a lake.
Clean attractive shower facility, lake if you like to fish, cabins exceptionally clean - we watched the personnel as they cleaned the one next to us. Natural springs hot tub which we will try next time. Seemingly large park with many tent, RV and day use options. We are returning next month. The park is about 5 miles from Casa Mañana in Safford. Also check out Discovery Park nearby for educational options for Saturday evening.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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