Douglas Spring Trail

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Saguaro National Park

Douglas Spring Trail is a 16.6 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Tucson, Arizona that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Horses are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 16.6 miles Elevation Gain: 3,740 feet Route Type: Out & Back

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

walking

bird watching

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

no dogs

Easy trail with waterfall view This is an excellent introductory hike for someone who normally doesnt get out there. You can negotiate the trail with ease in a pair of tennis shoes, but hiking boots will enable you to continue farther up the trail. This trek doesnt end at Bridal Wreath Falls, but it is a common end point for most hikers. The scenery is classic Sonoran Desert Scrub, and the further you go on the trail, the more you get. For most begginers, the reward of a beautiful waterfall at the end of the hike, is about they need to get hooked. I've personally introduced a lot of "never hiked before" folks to the outdoors by taking them on this hike. The whole family from toddlers to elderly enjoy this trek on a regular basis, not many steep hills and lots of hikers to keep you company. For those more experienced backpackers who plan to stay overnight, you'll need a permit available from the Saguaro National Park office.

backpacking
1 month ago

My wife and I have been hiking for about a year but this was our first backpacking experience and it was a nice trail to begin with. As of 4/20 water is available at Douglas Spring. Campground area and outhouse was clean. Came across a nice Arizona Black Rattlesnake so stay alert. Spoke to a Park Ranger at the trailhead and they said that car break ins have occurred, so just be sure to not leave any valuables visible in the car and you'll most likely be fine.

no shade
2 months ago

Great trail, with lots of options and great views of Tucson. Highly recommend.

hiking
no shade
rocky
3 months ago

Made it to the beautiful water falls love it

backpacking
4 months ago

Hiked up January 23 for one night at Douglas Springs Campsite- quiet, lots of water. Found my car had been broken into when I returned the next morning. The NPS had mentioned “some break ins”, and sign at trailhead did as well. Still disappointing- will not use this TH for any overnight trips in future.

hiking
4 months ago

Definitely a busy trail on the weekend, however it’s mostly in the first 2 miles. We actually had the falls to ourselves... but that was lucky as folks were coming up the trail as we left. Be prepared for steps, lots of steps. Tried this as a trail run and was successful for some segments but couldn’t sustain running up all the steps. Glorious undisturbed views once you get away from Tuscon a bit, beautiful falls. Recommend. Bring sunscreen & water.

backpacking
4 months ago

Not animal friendly, but a great hike. Lots of steps, so trecking poles are nice. Very well-kept trail.

backpacking
snow
4 months ago

LOTS of steps (obviously). There were enough level sections that it wasn’t too bad. Went up to Cow Head Saddle and back from the campsite. Tracking poles helped a lot with the slick snow. There were a few limbs down, but not bad.

backpacking
4 months ago

A lot more water than I thought, although it is winter. The campsite is a little small if your group wants to camp together. Very well kept trail and is easy to follow, even without trail blazes.

hiking
5 months ago

This is my second time doing this trail but I did it backwards this time. The route I took isn’t listed on Alltrails as one trail, but I started at the trailhead (end of speedway) then took Converse trail to the Bajada wash then the Wildhorse trail, which intersected with Three tanks (I took Carrillo trail back to the main bridal wreath trail to get back to the parking lot). The first half of the trail was mostly flat with beautiful desert views and the awesome falls at Three tank trail. There’s a lot of water due to the recent snow and rain. The second half of the trail was a nice, moderately challenging incline, with more beautiful views. Even during winter, there’s a lot of vegetation, though little to no wildlife (except occasional hawks). My recording was spotty in the second half due to either low battery or poor service, but I think the loop totaled about 5.2 miles and took me about 3 hours with only a few quick (<5min) breaks at a moderate pace. Lightly trafficked the direction I went though the parking was overflowing onto the main road. I came on a Monday at 2:30. Great trailhead with options for every type of hiker!

hiking
5 months ago

Took Douglas Spring to Stock Bypass to Wildhorse to Speedway. Got back too soon so I went back up Douglas Spring maybe a third of a mile. Still trying to find the route the rangers marked on my handy map!

hiking
6 months ago

As a hiker who only dies “easy” trails, I can report that this trail qualifies for at least the first 3/4 of a mile before climbing. Very pretty, well-maintained and easy to get to at the very end of Speedway Blvd. A few places where it wasn’t clear which fork to take but no real problems.

hiking
9 months ago

loced the switchbacks at the higher elevation and saw a lot of animals. The sunset was amazing, will be back with my camera.

Thu Apr 18 2019

Loved this hike. Beautiful and different scenery. If you go to the falls it's a very rewarding hike.

hiking
snow
Sat Apr 13 2019

My boyfriend and I went backpacking in Saguaro National Park March 11-14. We initially planned to stay at Douglas Spring Campground then move onto Juniper Basin but the snow and hail, rain and wind made it difficult for our travels (and too cold for us to camp at the higher elevations) so we turned back to Douglas Spring Campground for a second night. Beautiful views! Wasn’t the most pleasant/comfortable backpack camping/hiking experience but looking back, we had a lot of fun. Wish the weather was a bit better. There’s always next time!

hiking
rocky
Fri Mar 29 2019

Lots of climbing, but a beautiful waterfall at the end.

hiking
Mon Mar 11 2019

So it starts with a lot of elevation gain which I love and then becomes “roller coaster” like all while gaining additional elevation. You quickly enter into high desert and then into the trees of the Rincons-I cannot speak enough about this trail...it’s fills my heart with joy every time I am on it!

Sun Feb 24 2019

Hiked the trail to Bridal Wreath Falls. Beautiful hike and somewhat challenging as there is a lot of uphill. Would love to hike the Douglas Sorings trail again and take some of the other trails off of it.

hiking
no shade
Thu Jan 31 2019

hiking
Wed Jan 02 2019

We did the Douglas Spring Trail to Bridal Wreath Falls, about 6.3 miles out and back. It so happened to snow the morning of our hike, and it was so-o-o beautiful. Views of the Tucson and Rincon mountains were scenic.

backpacking
Mon Dec 24 2018

The segment of trail to Douglas Spring Campground was pretty easy even with a full pack. I hiked in and out on weekdays and below the Bridal Wreath junction, I saw plenty of seniors and kids. It's not an overly difficult hike, but does have it's strenuous bits especially for beginners. Arriving at the trailhead in the afternoon, I made into the campground in fine time. The views of Tucson and the Catalinas are great as you get higher in elevation. The trail also gets much quieter after you pass the junction with the Bridal Wreath trail. The campground is well-equipped with three cleared sites, an outhouse (pack in your own toilet paper), and bear boxes. Fires are not allowed at Douglas Spring Campground, so make sure you either bring a stove or bring food that does not require heating. Also don't forget your backcountry permit if you plan to stay overnight.

hiking
Tue Dec 18 2018

Nice hike up Douglas Springs to Steel Tank

hiking
Thu Oct 25 2018

Great hike! Beautiful views and a stream/waterfall to play in at the top.

Tue Oct 23 2018

Views galore: giant cacti, waterfalls, wildflowers, one snake, two bears, all sorts of other wildlife. A rogue thunderstorm pinned me down a while, so I arrived at Douglas Springs campground via headlamp, trail still easy to follow. Three nice campsites with bear boxes, a restroom building, and of course the springs. It was steep and hot, but well worth the effort.

Fri Sep 21 2018

How many actually do the whole thing? Not many. Nobody I know. Not even SAHC. I love going to the falls.

Thu Sep 20 2018

Huge saguaros. Not many people on the trail.

hiking
Mon Sep 03 2018

It has been awhile since we have hiked. Really loved the views. It was not overly congested with people.

Wed Jan 24 2018

Great direction to the top of Rincon Mountains, but I appreciate the connections with other Trails such as Three Tank Trails, Carillo Trail, and Wildhorse Trails

Tue Dec 26 2017

Great trail to start hiking loved it!

hiking
Thu Nov 23 2017

Awesome trail. Very scenic.

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