Desert Ridge Monument Sign

Let’s Go Hiking

Lost Dutchman State Park
Hiking trails through the park lead into a much wider trail network on adjacent National Forest land. The Sonoran Desert landscape holds a variety of birds and wildlife while offering amazingly beautiful panoramic views. The best part about this Arizona hiking destination is the proximity to the metro Phoenix area, and the variety of trail difficulties available. Easy trails close to Phoenix are hard to come by, and more advanced hiking experiences even more rare. You can have it all within this expansive desert park, plan a trip to see for yourself…

Siphon Draw Trail
1.06 miles one way (5.8 miles round trip to Flatiron) — hikers, leashed dogs. No horses or mountain bikes.
Those who have experienced this advanced trail near Phoenix often describe the views at the end to be well worth the effort to get there. Much of this trail leads hikers scrambling up rocks while truly testing their physical abilities. The Siphon Draw section of the trail is located within the park and then gives way to Flatiron at the wilderness boundary. Extensive hiking opportunities exist within the wilderness although the trails are not typically marked as clearly as they are in the park.

Family Hiking Trails

Catalina State Park
At Catalina State Park, you can hike, take a horseback ride, and bicycle on the trails, surrounded by the towering Santa Catalina Mountains. There are eight trails at the park, varying in length and difficulty, but all with amazing views. Leashed dogs are welcome on all trails. All eight trails are multi-use except Romero Ruins. Before your trip, learn about the various desert plants and wildlife that you will encounter in the park, then pick up a copy of our free trail guide at the Visitor Center. All that’s left to do is get out there and enjoy the adventure!

Romero Ruins Interpretive Trail
7.2 miles, one-way — no dogs in Desert Bighorn Sheep Management Area, beyond Montrose Pools — no bikes in the Pusch Ridge Wilderness — not recommended for horses beyond Montrose Pools
This easy loop trail begins south of the main road across from the second pull-out. The trail crosses a seasonal wash (feet may get wet) before climbing about 80 steps to the hilltop. The Romero Ruins archaeological site includes the surface features of the remains from a Hohokam village dating back to about 500 A.D. Trailside signs address the archaeology of the site, the Hohokam culture, and the Romero homestead. Plan on 30 minutes of walking time. For the protection of cultural resources, no collecting is allowed.
Progressively difficult trail. Montrose Pools and Romero Pools are shallow catchments on canyon streams that flow seasonally. Start at the Trailhead parking lot and cross Sutherland Wash, which flows seasonally. The first mile is a relatively flat and easy walk to Montrose Pools (usually dry) and the park boundary. The next 1.7 miles is a steep and rocky climb to Romero Pools. Poor trail conditions might be encountered as this is an unmaintained wilderness trail. From the Trailhead to Romero Pools is 2.8 miles with an elevation gain of 900 feet. Plan on two hours of walking one way from the Trailhead to the pools.
To continue to Romero Pass, follow the trail to your right as it ascends out of the stream bed. The trail then slowly climbs up-canyon 4.4 miles to Romero Pass at 6,000 feet elevation. From the Trailhead to Romero Pass is 7.2 miles with an elevation gain of 3,300 feet, about a five-hour hike one way. Romero Canyon Trail ends at Romero Pass, where it intersects Mt. Lemmon Trail (to Mt. Lemmon) and West Fork Sabino Trail (to Sabino Canyon).

Nature Trail
1.0 mile, loop — no horses.
Another easy loop trail. The Nature Trail begins at the trailhead parking lot, climbs a hill, then meanders through low foothills with typical desert scrub vegetation. Trailside signs feature local plants and animals, in addition to climate and geology information. Plan on 45 minutes of walking time.

Birding Trail
1.0 mile, loop — no horses.
This easy loop begins at the trailhead parking lot. The trail crosses a wash (with seasonal water flow) then loops up and down the foothills. Desert scrub, mesquite bosque, and riparian vegetation are seen with trailside signs highlighting the relationships between unique bird species and their preferred habitat. Plan on 45 minutes of walking time.


Ask CAO Jeffrey Blair

Officer Jeffrey Blair

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