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Arizona City, ARIZONA

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great facilities, beautiful views!

The views are unreal!  It's nestled up against the Catalina mountain range with great views of the mountainside. The park entrance is not very obvious until you come right up to it and then you see the large entrance signs. It's very convenient to local shopping but yet very removed once you enter. The RV section is very clean and the spaces are wide apart for privacy. The hiking trails are well maintained and graded. The evening we stayed there was an outdoor concert that we did not attend but sounded fun from the notice the friendly attendants handed out at the gate. This was a very popular park even for day use so plan ahead. The river stream was running due to the recent snow storm the previous week and although the mesquite trees were still bare, the ground was covered in grass. Overall very nice state park in the spring. We made it to one of the easier hikes called Montrose Pools which was very picturesque and a great place for a picnic stop.

Fantastic views and lots of fun trails. They also have a lot of activities and entertainment to attend at various times each month. 30& 50 amp with water and no dump on their"B" loop sites with restrooms and showers. The"A" loop sites have some with and some without power. There are also 2 easy to access dump stations in the park. Very close to town.

Beautiful

Beautiful location, very sparse spots, very quite.

Lots of activities

This 55+ community is very well organized.

55+

Another well organized and well maintained park. You have to request month ahead if you are not staying for a long period of time.

Clean park with necessary ammenities

The owners are an older couple who were very friendly, and very accommodating. We called at 7pm on a Sunday looking for a spot that night. Even though they were technically closed they met us there, and helped us get set up. Ended up staying for an entire month, and had zero issues with this nice, quiet community.

Beautiful 55+ community

This community has so many organized activities for residents. They have almost everything you would need on site. Everything for activities, concerts, games and shows. Great for snowbirds or somewhere you need to stay a few months.

Full time

This is a no age limit Rv park. Has laundry facility and clubhouse. No your ideal park if looking for something overnight or short time.

Cool

Lots to see.. Stayed In the open camping community sights.. Very nice and clean

Nice

Desert life.. Very quiet and clean.. Lovely view of the desert and some hiking trails

Great

This is a very nice self service campground. Clean, scenic, and with decent bathrooms and showers. There is no shade, but you’re in the desert so that is the expectation. The sky is beautiful at night and sunrise/sunset is otherworldly.

An amazing and beautiful place to camp.

This is a large campground that is great for Tents, Vans, and RVs. The roads getting in are amazing and the scenery is beautiful. I come from a area that is green nearly year round, lots of trees and thick forest. Water is plentiful as well as swamps. This place is in stark contrast to where I call home but is still amazingly beautiful. I had never seen the massive Saguaro Cactus and was sure to be a highlight of this trip. The area did not disappoint at all. 

We arrived in weather that was sunny and clear with a temperature of 102 degrees. While that sounds incredibly hot, it should not scare you off. The humid 90 degree weather back We arrived in weather that was sunny and clear with a temperature of 102 degrees. While that sounds incredibly hot, it should not scare you off. The humid 90 degree weather back home is much harsher than the very dry 102 we arrived in. The camp ground was wonderful and"closed" for the summer. This means that while you are able to camp there, the office is not maned. Simply deposit your payment into an envelop and drop it into the box at the office and you are good to go. 

The campsites are great. They have a sandy peat gravel which is surprisingly comfortable under a tent and sleeping bag. If you are using a mattress in your tent, then you really have nothing to worry about. The temperature at the time we hit the sack was still high, so we started on top of our sleeping bags. Temperatures however did drop to 64 degrees and I woke up in my bag. The campground also have Bathrooms, but they do not have showers. That bathrooms can be hot and humid but still serve their purpose. I believe all the sites have tables was great for us.

The morning was amazing and after a quick breakfast, a bike ride was in order. There are a number of trails in the area and many of them are great. Some have steps for Hikers and are not friendly for Mountain Bikers. The trails do not have good markings but are fairly easy to follow with a GPS map. I say have fun.

My review

Very good amenities. Quiet. Not overcrowded, 2swimming pools, large laundry. Really suited our needs. We were there June and July 2019

Desert for days

Beautiful views, quaint little town, tons of history and scenic beauty to enjoy. Goldfield town is a must, there is so much to do and see there. Just know that the attractions do close once the heat averages about 105 and reopen once the heat has gone down.

Nice views

Very nice area and very good hiking trails. I would go back again

Jewel in the desert!

We try to stop at this SP campground every time we're heading out of town or come back home (Tombstone) We always stay during the Fall/Winter months though. I'm not sure if they are even open in the summer, due to extreme heat. This park is just beautiful. Full of blooming cactus in the Spring and gorgeous sunsets always. The bathrooms are spotless and they have individual locking showers. For $30 you get water, electric, a huge site &, tent area in addition to your rv lot, The lot is pavement, and the tent is sand. All sites are set up in a random pattern, to give you the most privacy.  our site had a Ramada with picnic table & fire pit. They do sell firewood but it's $7 a bundle. We also once stayed in their overflow area, which is dry camping and that's only $15. They have great hiking trails, but use a walking stick, I got too up close and personal with a rattlesnake.

Very nice

Stayed here April 2018. Staff on site are very polite and helpful. Lots of room for large campers with hookups. Would definitely stay again.

All the features of a hotel

This KOA had some really awesome features and gives you most of the convenience of a hotel with the ability to bring your RV and your personal items with you without the hotel price tag. The KOA features a year round heated pool and jacuzzi. The pool area was fenced and had some chairs, tables, and what appeared to be covered grills. The pool is right outside the office building which also has bathrooms and a small convenience store. If they don't have what you are looking for the is a major grocery store about 2 miles away. This KOA is in town. Don't come here if you're looking for a remote destination. The other side of the exterior fence has houses and businesses.

Each site has a picnic table and some had a stand up bbq pit. The spaces are really close together and separated by a row of rocks. Up front they have 4 little single room cabins that say there can sleep 6 but have no bathrooms. There are some upgraded RV spaces that have outside grill areas with sinks and counter space.

The spaces have very little shade if any! Be very aware of the weather when you visit. It'll be hot during the day and very cold at night depending on the time of year. You will be randomly assigned a space unless you pay the fee to have an assigned space.

The KOA features a small fenced playground with a tetherball, swing set, merry go round, and a table with an umbrella. On the other side of the KOA there is a small fenced dog run. I also saw a stand alone sink near one of the loops. There is an activity center if you're hosting a group event. It had a few standing bbq pits outside. At the entrance was an air pump for filling tires.

Great Mountainside Campsite

We have stayed here a couple of times on trips to the West Coast. The park is beautiful at the foot is the mountains overlooking Tucson. The elevation is fairly high up. So, the temps are quite moderate compared to Tucson. They have a mix of reservation and non reservation sites all ranges from large RVs to tent camper. Great showers and restrooms and good roadways all the way into the sites. Tucson is just minutes always and the State Park Entrance is near a residential neighborhood. The mountains are beautiful in the morning. I would highly recommend this site if you are wanting to camp near Tucson, Arizona.

Not what I expected but it worked out

Nice little park. Staff was great. Sites are too close together for my liking but lots of trails off the park. Dropped in on Memorial Day weekend, sites were mostly full (1 site left) but the neighbors had little dogs and we have 2 big German Shepherds so that wasn’t going to work so we asked if we could stay in the equestrian area since there was only one person in there & they agreed. It was PERFECT for us. Not sure we’ll stay again if we can’t use that area!

Close but so far away

Stumbled upon this great little spot while looking for some stealth camping near the salt river. Great sites, nice park, water & electricity at each site. Close to town, the salt river & canyon lake. Friendly staff, well maintained.

Desert Camping with Close City Access

Great stop in an AZ state park within minutes of civilization at Tucson. Plenty of hiking trails nearby, great campsite amenities. Showers, clean bathrooms, water at every campsite.

Showed up on a Monday afternoon with no reservation and picked up a non-electric site no problem. $20 fee or $30 with electric hookup.

Would definitely stay here again.

Gilbert Ray Campground , May, 2019

May, 2019 we visited Saguaro National Park near Tucson AZ. We had planned to hike into the park at one of their few campgrounds but the office informed us that there was a controlled burn and recommended we not stay in the park and suggested Gilbert Ray as a good option. Gilbert Ray Campground is a great location for visiting the National Park. We arrived to find the office closed for the summer, so self serve option was available, at 10.00 per night for tent camping you can’t beat the price. The bathrooms were clean and as an added plus they have a dishwashing station. We stayed in the A loop. There are no showers and the campsite it all gravel making it next to impossible to put a tent stake in. The sites are fairly close together, for example, I could hear our neighbor unzip his tent. All sites have picnic tables. Cell service is good.

Cute campground right on the edge of town

Catalina State Park was beautiful in a very unique way. The campground sits at the base of the Catalina mountains and it made for gorgeous views. The landscape is pretty standard desert. There was a lot of plant life but not a lot of green. There are a ton of ants and other desert crawlies (just be prepared). Most of the spots are not well shaded so I don't think this is a very good summertime campground unless you are in an air conditioned camper of some sort. Some of the sites do have electric and water which is a nice perk. The campground is literally right on the edge of town. The road you take to get into the park is at a stop light intersection with a shopping plaza on the other side. Even with the close proximity tot he highway and town I didn't notice any unwanted noise.

The bathrooms were really well kept and had showers that even in the cold of November were putting out hot water. There are a ton of neat little hiking trails through the park (and quite a few geocaches). I could totally see this being a fun place to take pictures just because of the views. If you are looking for a large group event they had some facilities that could accommodate. My biggest dislike about this campground is they do not allow wood fires at all. It makes sense because EVERYTHING there is super dry but with the cool night temperatures (even when it was hot mid day) you couldn't warm up with a roaring fire. As a workaround you can use the fake logs in the BBQ pit (but they didn't seem to put off enough heat for us) and it looked pretty silly having 5 people standing around a BBQ pit trying to warm up!

Gilbert Ray Campground , May, 2019

May, 2019 we visited Saguaro National Park near Tucson AZ. We had planned to hike into the park at one of their few campgrounds but the office informed us that there was a controlled burn and recommended we not stay in the park and suggested Gilbert Ray as a good option. Gilbert Ray Campground is a great location for visiting the National Park. We arrived to find the office closed for the summer, so self serve option was available, at 10.00 per night for tent camping you can’t beat the price. The bathrooms were clean and as an added plus they have a dishwashing station. We stayed in the A loop. There are no showers and the campsite it all gravel making it next to impossible to put a tent stake in. The sites are fairly close together, for example, I could hear our neighbor unzip his tent. All sites have picnic tables. Cell service is good.

Across the street from a metro station

I stayed 5 nights here, back in with FHU. The staff was very friendly and the proximity to downtown is great! I was all the way at the front near the bathroom/office, but also near the street. A lot of foot traffic throughout the night being in an urban setting. Next time, I'll request to be a little further back into the park itself.

Very clean

This is by far the cleanest campground I’ve ever seen. The park rangers were very helpful. The bathrooms were spotless and the showers are huge and clean better then the ones I have at home. Everyone was very friendly and my 2 dogs loved it to stayed 5 days can’t wait to go back!

Ranger Review: Wenzel Camp Quilt at Catalina State Park

Campground Review

Catalina State Park is just a bit outside of Tucson Arizona, and more importantly, Saguaro National Park.  We used this State Park as a jumping-off point for our trip to Saguaro and it was a pretty good location for that.

Oro Valley is a modern area with tons of shopping and dining options right outside the park.  This was very convenient for us to pick up McDonalds or grab something we forgot from the store.

The Park itself is stunning.  Right up against the mountains, the views are gorgeous, especially at sunset.  We were in campsite #A-23, which was AMAZING. Perfect for tent camping, the space is large and flat.  You could easily fit several tents in this site.

We drove around campgrounds A and B and found the sites to be much more spaced out in A.  Most of the sites were occupied by RVs, which made for a very quiet and non-stressful night!  

Our site had electric hook ups and a water faucet.  Also a BBQ grill and picnic table are provided. Wood fires are NOT permitted in the park.

Overall we LOVED this place.  We will for sure return in the near future!

The Park also has a lot of amazing trails, including a very short hike to see Hohokam ruins which were so cool to see!!  The kids loved this hike and the views were amazing.

Product Review

As a Ranger for The Dyrt, I get products to test from time to time - at Catalina State Park we had the opportunity to try out the Wenzel Camp Quilt (or 2!).  These quilts are so great! Our old camp blanket had to be carefully folded in a particular way and then zipped up. These quilts come with stuff bags and you can just stuff the quilt in them when you are done!  I now keep these in the car with me at all time, because you never know when you need a picnic blanket, or something to keep you warm!

For us, it is a no-brainer to just toss one or two of these in with your camping gear.  Here in Arizona, the temperature drops fast once the sun goes down. Although it was over 100F during the day, it was still FREEZING cold in our tent at night.  We were so grateful to have these quilts to snuggle up and keep us warm!

Campground Video

https://youtu.be/yw_dUs9b7aM

Great spot with lots to do around the area

Just northwest of Tucson is this beautiful county campground, located a few miles from Saguaro National Park and the awesome Arizona-Sonoran Desert Museum (a must see). Hiking and mountain biking trails are all over the area, with the Brown Mountain hike being our favorite as it’s accessible from the campground and has great views all around.  

Each site is equipped with electric hookups and there are water spigots throughout the campground, in addition to running water in the clean bathrooms (no showers though) and a nice dishwashing sink.  The picnic tables ranged from normal-sized to very small and awkward, depending on the site. There is decent privacy in between most sites, as it is beautifully landscaped with native desert cacti, shrubs, and trees.  

It’s important to note that this campground doesn’t take reservations, but if you show up by 8am and get in line, you will more than likely get a spot.  You can continue to add nights to your stay before 10am each morning, for up to 7 days total. They also don’t take credit cards, so come prepared with cash or a check.

One of our favorites

So close to Tucson! Take in a game at U of A. Go shopping. Explore the area. This park is in a prime location. Large sites, hiking trails for all levels.

Best qualified 55+ resort

This golf resort had everything you could ever want in retirement. They have trailers for rental and sale, and full RV hook up spots.

They have every game you could think of, every event you could think of… They have a fitness center, and a bistro on site. They are sitting on a beautiful golf course that's reasonably priced to golf at (about $1 a hole). They have many pools, and hottubs, food trucks, concerts, seminar and craft halls, a library, and a baseball field to just name a few things.

This place isn't just a resort, it's a city standing on its own. You could definitely live here in your own world and never feel like you are missing anything from the outside.