Blooming brittlebrush, hummingbirds tipping the tops of Palo Verde trees, the occasional equestrian, beautiful ironwork bridges, mountain vistas and accessible paved trails for any kind of mobility device…there are plenty of reasons why spinning The Loop in Tucson is addictive outdoor adventure. With a network of 120 miles of shared-use paths (soon to be 131 miles,) the biggest challenge just may be choosing where to roll first.
Here are our favorite sections (so far):
Cañada del Oro River Park Trail
(also called the CDO Linear Park)
This smooth asphalt trail runs 11 miles from Santa Cruz River Park Trail at I-10 (Marana) to E. Tangerine Rd./SR 989 (Oro Valley). My husband I most enjoy the middle section that swings by river wash and wide swaths of wildflowers in springtime. We unload at Christina-Taylor Green Memorial Linear Park (directions), which offers super convenient ADA parking, ADA restrooms and easy trail access. From the parking lot, we ride to the right, northeasterly towards Oro Valley. About 5 or 6 miles on, we pause to picnic before turning back. This adventure makes for a great day trip from our Scottsdale home base.
A bit more urban than the CDO and longer by 10 miles, the Rillito River Park Trail offers 5-star spinning. The full trail runs 21.8 miles from Santa Cruz River Trail at I-10 to N. Craycroft Rd. Our favorite section starts at Dan Felix Memorial Park (directions), which has convenient ADA parking, ADA restrooms, and marked trail access. From there, my husband and I turn right onto the asphalt path, and ride east past multiple parks, groves, and sunshade outlets until we feel we’ve rolled enough rubber for the day and head back.
Look at a map
Although you can get to the above trails from the direction links given, it helps to look at the big picture of The Loop network of paths before you go. Write to Tucson city government and a representative will send you a free and very useful map. Or you can link on to the online interactive map.
Even in winter the Arizona sun sizzles and dehydrates. Pack water, snacks and sunscreen.
Making Accessibility Happen
Every city wants your business. Let them know what you need, want and appreciate in order to make that business happen.
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