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Catalina State Park is undoubtedly one of the best hiking areas in all of Southern Arizona. With the entrance located right off Oracle Rd. in the Town of Oro Valley, it provides incredible convenience without sacrificing natural beauty. It also provides a wide array of hiking options from quick and easy to long and rugged. You can even use this as a start or end point for a through-hike of the entire Catalina Mountain Range - just be aware, that option will take some time and planning. Most hikers opt for either the short and friendly Canyon Loop Trail or the longer hike up the Romero Canyon Trail to Romero Pools. both offer spectacular views of the Catalina Mountains and some access to water. But the hike to Romero Pools is the one to take if you're looking for a bit of a challenge that rewards you with a dip in several beautiful desert swimming holes, high in the canyon. This park also provides great opportunities for camping, trail running and cycling.
Please note that Catalina State Park requires an entry fee: Daily Entrance: Per Vehicle (1-4 Adults) - $7.00 Daily Entrance: Individual/Bicycle - $3.00 Depending on the time of year some of the pools and creeks may be dry. Those intending to do longer hikes should bring a map, sunscreen and plenty of water - at least one gallon per person per day.