register help

Romero Canyon Loop Trail, AZ

76 154 0
Guide 154 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Tucson > Tucson NW
2.8 of 5 by 5
clicktap icons for details
Difficulty 1 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance Loop 2.25 miles
Trailhead Elevation 2,705 feet
Elevation Gain 187 feet
Accumulated Gain 202 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 1 hour
Kokopelli Seeds 3.26
Interest Seasonal Creek
varies or not certain dogs are allowed
editedit > ops > dogs to adjust
feature photo
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Inaugural Calculation on Button Tap!
1  2019-09-06 fricknaley
18  2018-01-29
Romero Loop and Oracle Rumble
6  2016-01-14 sirena
2  2015-11-22 fricknaley
13  2010-09-08
Hidden Falls
10  2009-08-23 fricknaley
12  2008-11-08 tecdivr
2  2008-10-31 tecdivr
Page 1,  2
Author fricknaley
author avatar Guides 93
Routes 383
Photos 3,724
Trips 2,743 map ( 18,146 miles )
Age 43 Male Gender
Location Tucson, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
Expand Map
Preferred   Dec, Jan, Feb, Mar → 7 AM
Seasons   Early Autumn to Late Spring
Sun  6:09am - 6:27pm
Official Route
1 Alternative
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Meteorology Nearby
Named place Nearby
Culture Nearby
Water? Really?
by fricknaley

Catalina State Park is a popular place here in Tucson, the vast majority come to hike to Romero Pools. The beginning part of the Romero Canyon trail provides the first leg of a nice, short loop hike that wanders through the foothills of Catalina State Park and avoids much of the crowds. This is a great short hike for kids in a backpack as well.

Begin this short loop from the popular Romero Canyon trailhead and immediately cross over Sutherland Wash, which may have water flowing in it depending on the recent precipitation activity in the mountains. The trail breaks left just after the wash. A sign for the Birding trail breaks away right. Stay left and climb briefly up the slope overlooking Sutherland Wash, then follow the broad sandy trail through the relatively flat land before it truly starts to climb up to the Pools. There are great views over the north side of Pusch Ridge here, particularly the vertical north face of Table Mountain and also Pusch Peak. After 0.6 easy miles on the Romero Canyon trail you come to the first signed intersection.

Hang a left onto the Canyon loop trail which now swings generally north. Again this trail is mostly flat. There are nice views along the north part of the Catalinas, country not often seen in Tucson. There are some nice canyon overlooks along the way too. The trail eventually starts swinging west and comes to some stairs where you descend down to the Sutherland Wash again. You will now stay on the south side of the wash for a while. This part of the trail along the wash is surprisingly lush with nice trees and shade. You may be surprises to find water here even if the wash is dry farther down at the Romero Canyon trail crossing. This is a very nice area to relax. Soon the trail crosses over the wash at a sign. Just beyond this you come to a signed intersection with the Sutherland Trail. This is after 0.9 miles on the Loop Trail.

Hang a left onto the Sutherland Trail and follow it about 0.8 miles back to the trailhead. This section is basically flat the whole way. It crosses over the wash again twice. Again there may some nice areas with water here. In the spring there is nice, tall grass along the way.

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2008-04-19 fricknaley
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Most recent of 11 deeper Triplog Reviews
    Romero Canyon Loop Trail
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    one of my best friends from childhood came out for a visit! :y:

    Shell and I took him to catalina state park to give him a classic desert experience. had some exceptional cloud cover. saw 2 tortoises and some great scenery!

    after being here for quite a while now, it is always really cool to see the desert for the first time through someone else's eyes every now and then. reminds you of all the great things out here
    Romero Canyon Loop Trail
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Evening hike up Sutherland and back. Cool moonrise over snow-encrusted Mount Lemmon summit on the drive on the drive in, and a good sunset photo of snowy Table Mountain. Heard a Great Horned owl hooting away on the hike in, and a pack of coyotes burst into yipping right next to me as I hiked back in the moonlight. I love having this hike so close to my house.
    Romero Canyon Loop Trail
    rating optionrated 4rated 4rated 4rated 4
    Romero Loop and Oracle Rumble
    This hike was Plan B as we had hoped to do some of the Baby Jesus trail but after two tries to find the TH, we just went to the main park. But FIRST, we drove down to Rancho Sonora out of Florence where we would meet up with Karl. We got there in time for a little happy hour out on the picnic bench before having a nice pasta dinner in preparation for Karl's first 50k race at the Oracle Rumble by the Arizona Trail.

    The next morning we got up way before the roosters even thot of waking up so that we could be at Passage 14/15 Freeman Road TH at 6:30 per the request of the race organizers. We arrived and no one from the Race showed up until 7:20ish when two large yellow school buses rolled in from the northeast. It took awhile for the buses to unload all of those runners. They had started from Oracle State Park at 5AM. The race started about 7:45.

    Kathy and I went back to Rancho Sonora for breakfast: pumpkin pie and whip cream before loading up our vehicles for our hike on the Baby Jesus Trail. We both put the route on our phones. I think Tonto Jr actually ended up hiking a little on the Baby Jesus Trail. I believe the TH for this hike was at the top of the hill we had driven by but it wasn't jiving with the way-point. Kathy said she thot it was somewhere else so I followed her and we ended up doing a giant 3/4 circle back to the main road so we threw in the towel and just went to Catalina State Park.

    The main parking area was full and the secondary had one empty spot and we made another. We didn't want to hike too long as we needed to get back to Oracle State Park to wait for Karl's finish. He thot somewhere around 2:30 I think. So we opted for the Romero Canyon Loop Trail. We got the extra mileage because of the distance to and from its actual start.
    After visiting the restroom we were off and up the main trail to the west. This part of the trail should really be called a road or avenue as it's quite wide. I reminisced about my last hike over here which was a backpack to Romero Canyon below Romero Pass in April 2010 when it was a little toasty.

    Eventually you hang a left and head down into the canyon drainage via some nice steps and past some benches. It's a typical wash/canyon bouldery area and would be beautiful in non-winter time I think. The boulders were pretty cool and it narrowed in some areas before widening out. There were nice stances of saguaros here and there and a couple different groves of trees. There were quite a few people out enjoying the day both on and off the trail. It wasn't the hike we wanted to do but it was still a nice hike where you got a lot of bang for your buck so can't complain.
    We headed back to Oracle State Park where once again we had a parking issue where we had to make one of our own spots. A few runners had already come in and were enjoying the food and beverages provided by the Arizona Trail Association. There was music as well. We ate a snack and cheered for the runners that came in. Soon enough Karl would be one of them; smiling as he came through the finish line. He said the hills he had feared the most weren't bad so that was good.

    A nice day. Video is done, I just have to upload it.
    Romero Canyon Loop Trail
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    The usual Preston after work hike up to Breccia Hill. Water came roaring down Romero Creek while I was there. Wonderful, brown, frothy, cascading monsoon water. Felt so nice to wade through, but also felt a little too turbulent to safely attempt a swim in. Humankind and Nature breathed a collective sigh of relief as Summer relaxed its hellish death grip on the desert, ushering in a low 80's high temperature, cloudy skies, greenery, and flowing water. I love watching the desert come back to life!
    Romero Canyon Loop Trail
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Catalina State Park trails
    good early morning run in catalina state park utilizing some of the shorter trails. all the water crossings were pretty manageable. surprised myself with a couple sub 9 minute miles. i don't score too many of those :y:
    Romero Canyon Loop Trail
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    found my water bottle i lost yesterday in the tucson mountains. how did i find that same bottle at catalina state park you ask? why simple. it was in my car the whole time because i never took it with me on my run in the first place :y:

    28 degrees at 6:30 am
    Romero Canyon Loop Trail
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Half day visit & hike at Catalina on our way to Picacho Peak.
    Clockwise loop - Bridle :next: 50 Year :next: Trail Link :next: Sutherland :next: Romero Canyon.
    Lots of wild flowers throughout, especially along Sutherland & Canyon Loop.
    Some cool water flow along the way to splash the face on this warm afternoon.
    Enjoyable stop!
    On to Picacho .....

    Substantial along the Sutherland & Canyon loop trail.
    Romero Canyon Loop Trail
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    shake out run after big one yesterday :wlift: :stretch: :bdh:
    Romero Canyon Loop Trail
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Move Across 2 Ranges
    my buddy Eli wanted to do this so we signed up and decided to try and run as much as we could.

    fun event with a nice turn out. weather was ideal for a big effort. felt pretty good most of the day especially so on the first leg in the tortolitas

    saw a big angry mojave rattler on the sutherland. second big angry rattler of the season already :scared:
    Romero Canyon Loop Trail
    rating optionrating optionrated 3rated 3rated 3
    Out for a quick run before work. Good water at all 6 crossings, made it across the first 5 dry. The last one would require a 175 long jump or Preston legs to make it over. :), let the games begin :sweat:

    Permit $$
    Visit this link for full details.

    There are four specific day use areas that require a Coronado Recreational Pass or a National Pass/America the Beautiful Pass.
    1) Sabino Canyon - located on the Santa Catalina Ranger District (520)749-8700
    2) Madera Canyon - located on the Nogales Ranger District (520)281-2296
    3) Cave Creek - located on the Douglas Ranger District (520)364-3468
    4) Mt. Lemmon at 11 day use sites.

    Catalina State Park $6 per day. Sabino Canyon Tram is $10 extra.

    Coronado Forest
    MVUMs are rarely necessary to review unless mentioned in the description or directions
    Coronado Motor Vehicle Use Maps (MVUMs)

    Catalina State Park State Park

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To Catalina State Park Trailhead
    From Phoenix take 1-10 south to the 241 exit (Tangerine). Follow east to AZ 77 (Oracle Road). Turn right (South) on AZ77 and signs for Catalina State Park lead the way.

    From anywhere in Tucson, connect to Oracle Rd (Highway 77) and head north past Pusch Ridge. After you have gone about 15-20 miles you will see the sign for Catalina State Park on the right. There is an entrance fee to get into the park. To get to the trails, just drive in and follow the signs to a large parking area marked "trailhead".

    From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 107 mi - about 1 hour 44 mins
    From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 14.0 mi - about 23 mins
    From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 251 mi - about 3 hours 50 mins
    3 pack - loud whistle
    go prepared
    help comment issue

    end of page marker