Cañada del Oro River Park Trail

Arizona

Cañada del Oro River Park Trail Facts

States: Arizona
Counties: Pima
Length: 11 miles
Trail end points: Santa Cruz River Park Trail at I-10 (Marana) and E. Tangerine Rd./SR 989 (Oro Valley)
Trail surfaces: Asphalt
Trail category: Greenway/Non-RT
ID: 8791719
Trail activities: Bike, Inline Skating, Wheelchair Accessible, Walking

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Cañada del Oro River Park Trail Description

The Cañada del Oro River Park Trail follows its namesake waterway in the northern suburbs of Tucson from a junction with the longer Santa Cruz River Park Trail in Marana to Oro Valley. The recently completed trail features smooth pavement and undercrossings wherever it encounters a road.

Various destinations are conveniently located along the trail's route, including retail establishments in Oro Valley and both Pima Community College's Northwest Campus and the adjacent Northwest YMCA Pima County Community Center in unincorporated Pima County. You'll also pass under three connecting bridges for the Omni Tucson National Resort's two golf courses, which are separated by the Cañada del Oro River.

The continuous trail is actually known by several different names. In Oro Valley, the trail is also known as the Cañada del Oro (CDO) Shared Use Path or CDO Linear Park, with the exception of the easternmost tip along Big Wash, which is appropriately known as the Big Wash Shared Use Path. From Thornydale Road to Magee Road farther south, the trail is now officially known as the Cañada del Oro Christina-Taylor Green Memorial River Park in honor of the youngest victim of the mass shooting at a constituent meeting held by U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords in 2011.

The Cañada del Oro River Park Trail is also part of a larger trail network called The Loop that will one day encompass 130 miles of trail throughout Tucson and Pima County.

Parking and Trail Access

Parking and restrooms for the Cañada del Oro River Park Trail are available at a trailhead on N. Shannon Road, south of W. Magee Road. An additional trailhead with parking is located on W. Starburst Drive off N. Thornydale Road.

Cañada del Oro River Park Trail Reviews

I was in town to ride in the 34th El Tour de Tucson, November of 2016. From the Candlewood Suites on River Road I connected to the Loop on the Rillito River Trail (from the parking lot!). I crossed to the south side of the Rillito at Camino de la Tierra (fast traffic, dump trucks, rough pavement...be careful!). On the Rillito I connected to the Santa Cruz Trail and rode north catching the CDO Trail just north of Orange Grove Road.

The trail heads NE and is generally a gentle uphill grade all the way to where I turned around at N Oracle Road. It wasn't exhausting, just constant pedaling. On a recumbent trike I wasn't going more than 6 or 7 mph, but that's what I like about the trike. I could focus on the vistas and just enjoy the ambiance of the ride especially the views of the Santa Catalina Mountains.

On the return I was now going downhill most of the way. I shifted into the big ring and cruised along at about 15 mph enjoying the self-made breeze. It was a Friday and traffic on the trail was light.

According to Strava I rode 28.6 miles at an average of 7.7 mph (max of 22 mph) climbing a total of 501 feet. The nice thing was expending the most energy on the climb and then enjoying the ease of the return trip. This trail is a fun ride.

We started at the Green Memorial River Park trail head off of Shannon Road. Nice trail head with restroom and plenty of parking. Traveled north about 5.5 miles. Trail surface is very good and width varies by section. Plenty of users on the trail and most were friendly with a good morning. Wouldn't want to do this one in the summer or mid-afternoon, does have some shade along the way but gets toasty early in the day. We did see a coyote along the trail. All but one of the road intersections pass beneath the main road, the except was well marked with crossing light, etc., but was a side road with little traffic. Would do this one again.

A great trail on asphalt along the Canada del Oro. Beautiful views of the Catalina Mts. If you're biking in the summer go real early in the morning as the heat will drain you. Hydrate often!

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