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“Nice variety of well marked trails” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Catalina State Park

Catalina State Park
11570 Oracle Road, Tucson, AZ
520-628-5798
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Ranked #9 of 122 Attractions in Tucson
Type: State Parks, Outdoors
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Attraction details
Owner description: This beautiful park north of Tucson is great for hiking, picnicking and other outdoors activities.
Tucson, Arizona, United States
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Nice variety of well marked trails”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2013

The views and the clean well groomed trails are so pleasant to use. Whether you are looking for challenging hikes or just an easy stroll Catalina state park offers it.

Visited July 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Tucson, Arizona
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
“You need to know where to go to avoid the crowds”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2013

I LOVE Catalina State Park, it is one of the places where you can find me most every weekend and even during weekdays for an early morning or evening hike or run. But you need to know where to go to find wildflowers in the Spring or how to escape the crowds. Yes, the park can be quite busy, especially on weekends.

The park itself is very well maintained, with facilities at the trail head which is around 1 mile from the entrance to the park. There is also a faucet in the small pick-nick are to fill your water bottles, in case you forgot to do that at home.

The most common trails are the Birding trail and the Canyon Loop trail. Those are nice trails, and therefore popular by most folks. If you have small kids, the Montrose pools are a nice hike (around 20-30 minutes from the parking lot) in spring time, when water is still there and the kids can play at the water. A more strenuous hike is up to the Romero Pools - plan at least 1h 15m for the hike up there, most likely you will need around 1 1/2 hours for the 2.7 miles from the parking lot. Bring plenty of water, as there is limited shade. Again a popular hike, so you will meet other folks on the trail up and down there.

If you want to go more remote, follow one of the trails that split from the Nature trail, or follow the Sutherland trail North. This is also where you will find the wildflowers in spring time - you won't see them on the Canyon Loop trail.

Another option is to hike up to Romero Pass - once you pass the Romero pools it's likely you won't meet another person on your way up there, but it's quite strenuous and takes about 4 hours all the way up to the pass. If you do so, let someone know that you go up there, in case of an emergency.

In summary, the park is a wonderful place, right at the footsteps of Oro Valley and Tucson. Be aware that it can be crowded, but there are paths out there where you can also enjoy the tranquility and the beauty of the nature.

Visited July 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Arizona
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
25 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Family Fun and Hiking”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2013

This is base camp for the hiking trails that lead up Mt. Lemmon or Pusch Ridge. The picnic areas are well-laid out and numerous. Parking is great. The view of the mountains is awesome. Pusch Ridge is 5004' Mt Lemmon is over 8,000. Trails range between easy to hard, but most are easy-moderate. Take water!

Visited April 2013
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Oro Valley, az
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Very nice state park”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2013

Camping, hiking, many trails, and some trails go from the desert floor into the Santa Catalina (not for inexperienced hikers) and shorter trails for a good view of the desert and the impressive mountains nearby. Most desert flowers in April-May following a wet winter. Early in the morning is best during the hot summers.

Visited December 2012
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San Antonio, Texas, United States
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
18 attraction reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Beautiful for a morning run..”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2013

Went to Catalina State Park for a distance run while visiting Tucson. There's a little something for everyone here with great trails that range from pretty flat to serious hills and elevation gain. Just ask the ranger at the entry gate and they'll advise you on what fits for your style.

While I didn't camp here this time, the campground sites looked pretty nice but limited hookups. Would be happy to camp here for a day or two in the spring or fall. Having visited in July, I'm not sure I'd camp here in the summer heat.

There are also some nice stables here for horses. I parked in the "equine lot" for my run and it was getting a fair amount of use from folks with quarter horses.

Would definitely go back.

Visited July 2013
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