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Tanque Verde Falls

An impressive waterfall and nice swimming holes just outside of Tucson.

Hiking Difficult

3.2 km
143 m
143 m
0-1 hrs
Low Point
862 m
High Point
951 m
Tanque Verde Falls Map

Tanque Verde Creek has an 80-foot waterfall and refreshing swimming holes, when water is flowing. There are pools year round, even during the hottest part of summer, but they can become stagnant. The creek usually flows with spring melt and late summer monsoons, so it's best to choose a hot day after recent rains. Winter is a fine time to hike and see the waterfalls, but too cold to enjoy swimming.


The hike is easy at first, on a well-worn trail. After reaching the creek bottom, however, it turns into more difficult boulder hopping, scrambling, and wading. Just before reaching the waterfall comes the most difficult scramble section, up a large boulder with fall exposure. Use extreme caution here.

There are plenty of pools and smaller waterfalls all along the creek, so families with small children or anyone not comfortable with the final scramble can still enjoy the hike and the water.



Hiking trails where obstacles such as rocks or roots are prevalent. Some obstacles can require care to step over or around. At times, the trail can be worn and eroded. The grade of the trail is generally quite steep, and can often lead to strenuous hiking.

High Exposure

3 out of 4

Some trail sections have exposed ledges or steep ascents/descents where falling could cause serious injury.


2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

all year round


  • Picturesque
  • Dog friendly
  • Wild flowers
  • Water features
  • Family friendly

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area