Summary: This is a great modeate hike that starts out with a well defined and wide trail. Stay on this path until you reach a trail marker that will turn you right. From the marker, the trail will take a slow elevation gain along Montrose Canyon, which will be to your right. Stay on this trail until you reach the romero pools. The pools is a great place to take a lunch or in the warmer months, go for a swim. After a good rain, you will enjoy flowing waterfalls and streams, as well as gorgeous mountain views and desert landscapes. As a cautionary warning be careful when walking around the pools since the rocks are very slippery and wet. This is always a great hike to take. However, after a good rain storm, the waterfalls and streams will be active, which will add to the overall hiking experience.
Trailhead: If you were headed North on Oracle rd. (HWY 77) a couple miles past 1st. but before you get to Tangerine Rd. make a right into Catalina State Park. You should see a sign for the park. Head east until you come to the Ranger Station, there is a $6.00 daily fee. Continue east until you see the parking lot, and few feet south of the parking lot is the trailhead. (Lat:32.42572 Lon:-110.90775)
Trail Guides for Romero Pools - Catalina State Park:
Tucson Hiking Guide
by Betty Leavengood (Pruett Publishing Company)
Best Seasons: Year-Round
User Groups: Hikers,
Ranger Contact: AZ State Park Ranger Service 520-628-5798
Localhikes Reporter: This hike was submitted by Lawrence Knight, who has posted 5 other hikes on this site. To visit this reporters web site, click here.
Trail Reviews Page 1 of 5 Submit your own review
Reviewed by Mary on 1/19/2013
Hiked this in summer of 2012. Wanted to get to the pools but it just too strenuous of a hike. Also, it's packed with teenagers who don't pick up after themselves.
Reviewed by Josh on 10/23/2012
Did this hike today. Loved it!!! I will go back for sure. Defenitely not "easy" but it is a really nice trail. Just know that you are going "up" a mountain. I thought it was beautiful up there. Water level was low and freezing cold but so refreshing. Wasn't much trash either but may not be busy season. Mostly just water bottles along the trail and tons of toilet paper. I took out what bottles I saw but left the paper behind.
Reviewed by Mark on 7/15/2012
There were signs of a flood where the road crosses the wash. It was being cleared out by 2 tractors, so we had to walk the extra mile to the trailhead. The hike was fine, as expected. We were excited that the pools would be fresh and clean after a big storm. But as scattered showers go, they did not get any rain at the pools or above. The water level was 10" below the high line on the rocks and it was brown. Still enough for the kids to jump into. I could not get over how much trash was in and around the pools. We met a woman who says that she hikes twice a week and usually brings out more trash than she had today. We went to one of the lower pools and had to make a trash bag out of one of the many t-shirts I found lying in the mud.
Reviewed by Jamie on 4/8/2012
My boyfriend and I just finished this hike. We are in our 30's and in decent shape. I would not say this is a "easy" hike...there are many rocks and places you need to really exert yourself. When we were on our way back multiple people were asking us "are we almost to the pool?" It took us one hour and 45 min about to get to the falls and around the same back. My legs are sore and the hike wiped me out. The pool is ice cold but nice...I would do this hike again but prefer 70's or 80's instead of 90's out.
Reviewed by Torre on 2/29/2012
My daughter (7) and wife hiked the Romero Canyon Trail and this is the closest to that. It's a great hike with high elevation. Bring water!
Reviewed by ETA on 6/6/2011
WE WNET ON MEMORIAL DAY. SAW A FEW GROUPS OF PEOPLE, MEN AND WOMEN.GREAT WORK OUT FOR FIRST TIMERS AND FAMILY MEMBERS OVER 10. WENT MEMORIAL DAY WITH 11-55 YEAR OLD FAMILY MEMBERS. WE WERE CHALLENGED AND HAD FUN. WOULD LIKE TO GO BACK IN THE FALL OR AFTER THE RAINS.
Reviewed by brandon on 1/6/2011
i first went on this hike with boyscouts and it was fun good trail it gets a little hard in some spots the second time i went was with boyscouts again but we stayed the night up there had a great time swimming and cliff jumping water is prety cold though the last time i went i hadnt been hiking for a while and my boots were too small and i got quarter sized blisters but over all very great hike and beautiful :)
Reviewed by Jesse on 12/23/2010
Five friends and I went to the pools. None of us are experts, but we got up the trail in an hour and a half no problem. It is December, 23 and the water was literally freezing, but we had no problem swimming for a few minutes. Slippery rocks and jagged edges, but other than that perfect at 50 degree weather.
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