Unlike some of the other national parks, you can explore a lot of highlights of this park in just a few of days, which makes it a great weekend getaway. Hiking groups are limited to a maxi-mum of eighteen people. Hope Camp is a fantastic trail that’s open to horses and extends for just over 6.5 miles. The giant saguaro is the universal symbol of the American west. If you come upon a part of the hike that’s too difficult, there are several great spots where you can relax and take in the scenery. While the park is hot and relatively unmanageable during the summers, it is a great place to take advantage of the many hikes in Saguaro National Park in winter and other times of the year. It was strenuous, difficult, and a blast. Saguaro National Park has many hiking trails. There are few options for hiking to the summit. While the first half of the hike is relatively simple and straightforward, the second half can get steep with an elevation gain of more than 1,000 feet. October 30, 2018 By Richard Oppelaar 2 Comments. While we alway prep for our hikes, there are some extra ways we prepped for the Valley View Trail and the other hikes in Saguaro. Being so close to a larger city like Tucson makes Saguaro a very unique place to visit and allows people that wouldn’t necessarily venture to a more secluded park to get out and explore this desert landscape. This is an easy park to visit, with scenic drives and short walks among the towering cacti. Though the saguaro may be the park's centerpiece, after wet winters the spring wildflower display can be breathtaking. Saguaro cacti are the largest in the country; they live to more than 150 years old and can grow to over 45′ tall! The best views occur while you’re in the foothills during the first half of the hike. Those planning to do any serious hiking at Saguaro National Park are strongly advised to talk with rangers about their plans before setting out, and then to carry at least a gallon of water per day per person. While the trail is mainly used for hiking, it’s also a great place to go when you want to spot some local wildlife and plant-life. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time! A permit is required for overnight stays in the backcountry, the fee is $6 a night per campsite. If there is an image appearing on this blog that belongs to you and do not wish for it appear on this site, please e-mail us with a link to said image and it will be promptly removed. A half day is all you need to see the highlights, but with more time you can tour the entire park, go on a day hike, or camp in the backcountry. There’s also an ample amount of shade along the trail, which should keep you cool and comfortable. You’ll come upon a gate that offers access to a parking area with sizable sycamore trees. If you’re looking to move to this wonderful city, feel free to get in touch with our local team of Tucson real estate professionals at Grogan & Grogan Tucson Luxury Real Estate! Switchbacks for the last mile get you to the top of Wasson Peak (4687′). There is a lot of information out there about the great outdoors but not all of it is useful. Saguaro National Park is a beautiful park that sandwiches Tucson, Arizona. The trailhead is at a parking area off East Broadway Boulevard. Disclaimer: We do not claim ownership of any media used in our blog posts and we do our best to use only royalty-free stock photography, content licensed from other third party apps or social media, and content that we've produced in order to provide our visitors with the best possible user experience. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. The elevation gain is around 5,600 feet and can get very steep at times. Situated a mile to the northwest of the Red Hills Visitor Center in the TMD. Most of the hike follows the top of the ridge line on your way up to Tanque Verde Peak so the views are pretty hard to beat. Hiking in Saguaro National Park Though the mountainous desert topography might look intimidating, Saguaro National Park is one of the easier national … Accessed from the eastern boundary of the park, this trail gets you to the 3rd highest summit in Saguaro (8482′). The main difference between the park’s two sides is that the western portion receives slightly less rainfall and sits at a lower elevation than the eastern Rincon Mountain District. The Douglas Spring Trail is among the most popular hiking trails in Arizona. There are several spots where you can park your car before you head out on the hike. please consider buying after clicking on one of the links on our site! The trail is relatively open with minimal shade, which means that there are many opportunities for taking photos of expansive landscape but very few spots for shade. Any sources in Saguaro Wilderness are very intermittent streams or springs. The waterfall at the end of the trail is considered to be the best feature of the hike. Short and easy trail leading to ancient petroglyphs on a rocky hilltop. Wasson Peak is the tallest mountain in the Tucson Mountain District of Saguaro National Park. Although she has a strong presence in the Tucson Luxury Market she enjoys working with clients at all price points, from first time buyers to retirees. Around .3 miles into the Douglas Spring Trail, you should notice a sign to your right that takes you down the remainder of the Garwood Trail. There's no place where it's more obvious that life can thrive and be beautiful, even in the harshest of conditions. I created ‘Trailhead Traveler’ for those wanting to know the can’t miss hikes on their next upcoming trip; the trails that will stay in your memory long after you’ve left. Thank you. Welcome to Saguaro National Park Tucson, Arizona is home to the nation's largest cacti. Desert hiking can be a killer, literally. There’s a spacious parking lot located a short distance from the trailhead, which usually has spots open. Trails. If you’re thinking about taking a trip to the Saguaro National Park and want to prepare by jotting down a few trails to check out, the following provides a thorough guide to 11 of the best hiking trails in the Saguaro National Park. Valley View Overlook Trail An easy family hike (.8-mile round trip) within Saguaro National Park West that reaches a ridge that provides great views within a 35-mile radius. Because this trail is best known for its scenery, the best times to hike this trail would be during the spring and fall months. The weather can make it uncomfortable in the hot summer months so most visitors go between November and March. The Rincon Mountain District is located east of the city and the Tucson Mountain District is located outside northwest of Tucson. The trailhead is located off Kinney Road across from the Desert Museum. Saguaro National Park: Great hiking trails - See 1,003 traveler reviews, 989 candid photos, and great deals for Tucson, AZ, at Tripadvisor. We hope they help you plan your trip! Tucson, AZ separates Saguaro National Park into two regions – Tucson Mountain District (West) and Rincon Mountain District (East). There are some parking spots just off the speedway that you can use if they aren’t full. Get a Scenic View from the Valley View Overlook Trail (west) This hike is only 0.8 miles and relatively easy. The Saguaro is only found in a small portion of the United States in the Sonoran Desert and it is something special to stand next to one. Great hiking opportunities are available at Saguaro National Park in both districts. The east and west districts of the park offer more than 165 miles of hiking trails for campers and visitors, meaning there is so much for hikers to enjoy on the park’s trails. Click here for more National Park hikes!You can also view some of our most popular Gear Recommendations here! This is a very scenic trail that offers plenty of opportunities for taking pictures even when the creek is dry. With a high number of popular hiking trails available to you, it’s possible to choose one for the amazing scenery or to select another for the strenuous workout that it provides. Tumamoc Hill This easy hike (3.1-mile round trip) up a well-paved hill offers fantastic views of the city as well as a perfect spot for watching the sunrise and sunset. The Tanque Verde Ridge Trail is a lengthy 20-mile trail that’s among the most difficult on this list. This is a steep trail to the summit of Stafford Peak offering great views of Tucson and the entire West district of Saguaro National Park. The large rocks in the immediate vicinity of the waterfall are great for relaxing and having a quick bite to eat before you turn around for the second half of the hike. This trail provides hikers with classic desert scenery along with fantastic opportunities for bird watching. 11 BEAUTIFUL THINGS TO DO IN SAGUARO NATIONAL PARK 1. The trail is around 16.6 miles long, which means that you likely won’t be able to hike the entirety of it in a single day. Saguaro is located within Tucson’s city limits, meaning you can make your basecamp in town and still have quick access to … That makes Saguaro a … The trailhead can be found at the end of Signal Hill Road off of Golden Gate Road. Saguaro National Park is a dream destination for those that want to feel humbled by the environment and have an obsession with all things desert (that’s me!).. It is never a bad time to explore some of the below hikes in Saguaro National Park, just make sure to bring along plenty of water! This is an out-and-back trail, which means that it begins and ends at the same place. Assume you're carrying all your own water, a gallon per person, per day. The parking lot is sizable and should never be full when you’re looking for a place to park. While you’ll have an opportunity to spot many different types of wildlife, turtles are in abundance on this trail. Its 2 sections are on either side of the city of Tucson. Saguaro National Park offers visitors the chance to view native plants and animals while surrounded by the spectacular scenery of the Sonoran Desert. Saguaro U.S. Department of the Interior National Park Service Saguaro National Park Hiking in the Cactus Forest Rincon Mountain District Visitor Center (520) 733-5153 Leave all plants, animals, rocks and other natural and historic features undisturbed. Department of the Interior National Park Service Saguaro National Park Trails in the Tucson Mountain District Red Hills Visitor Center (520) 733-5158 Cactus Garden Trail (100 yards) The Cactus Garden Trail is located in front of the Red Hills Visitor Center. For parking, there’s a spacious lot situated just before the trailhead. There is several things to do at Saguaro National Park located in Tucson Arizona. Desert Discovery Trail There are no backcountry campsites in the Tucson Mountain district … The trailhead can be found just off Cactus Forest Dr, which is also where you’ll find some parking spaces. Beyond activities, the park itself protects one of the true icons of the American West, the giant Saguaro Cactus. Tucson, AZ separates Saguaro National Park into two regions – Tucson Mountain District (West) and Rincon Mountain District (East). The Tanque Verde Falls Beach trail is likely the easiest trail to hike on this list and is considered to be a nature trail. These majestic plants, found only in a small portion of the United States, are protected by Saguaro National Park, to the east and west of the modern city of Tucson. Tucson has a large variety of amazing hiking trails to go on these warm summer months! To get there, you will need to take the Douglas Spring trailhead at the end of the East Speedway Blvd. https://www.alltrails.com/parks/us/arizona/saguaro-national-park/backpacking This is an out-and-back trail, which means that you can turn back at any time. Licensed in the state of Arizona. 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