Things to Do in Tucson: Outdoor Adventures

Surrounded by two national forests filled with peaks high and low, Tucson is a mecca for outdoor activities. Trail runners, mountain- and road-bike riders, rock climbers, horseback riders, hikers, spelunkers and even skiers enjoy days filled with endless adventure. 

Pre-planned outdoor experiences include tours through Colossal Cave, off-roading with Trail Dust Adventures and horseback rides through the mountain ranges that lie within Saguaro National Park and Coronado National Forest. Spontaneous adventure is readily accessible for eager hikers along the many miles of mountain trails and, south of Tucson, Parker Canyon Lake and Patagonia Lake offer lush desert settings for water activities.

Many of these majestic desert sights are accessible via automobile, too. The Bonita Canyon Scenic Drive takes visitors through Chiricahua National Monument and the Catalina Highway winds up Mount Lemmon where, when winter brings snowy weather, skiers are seen carving back down. For more extreme adventure seekers, test leg muscles pedaling a road bike up grueling Catalina Highway, try the Hunter Trail to reach the summit of Picacho Peak, or join a rock-climbing class.

When exploring southern Arizona's outdoors, be sure to bring plenty of water, sunscreen, sunglasses and a hat! Though beautiful, the desert can be especially merciless in summer months!

Kimberly Gunning
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