• Natural Bridge Trail

    Chiricahua

    National Monument Arizona

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  • Visitor Center Summer Hours in Effect Beginning May 1, 2014

    Summer hours are in effect for the visitor center from May 1 - October 12, 2014 from 8:30 am - 4:30 pm. The hikers' shuttle will leave the visitor center at 9 am. For more information call 520-824-3560 0. More »

  • Entrance and Camping Fees Waived this Summer

    From June 1 through September 30, all entrance fees will be waived and federal lands passes will not be available for purchase at the park. More »

  • Mushroom Rock Trail Closed to Horses, Hikers Use Caution

    Mushroom Rock Trail is closed to horses due to hazardous conditions caused by recent flooding. Hikers use caution. Trail is washed out in place and may be difficult to follow.

Air Quality

The air quality station is located near the entrance to the monument.  General weather is recorded, and samples are collected to monitor many types of air pollutants.

Air Quality Station

NPS photo

Visitors who stand at Massai Point, the second highest vistapoint in the monument, can usually see a hundred miles in any direction. The sky is a vivid blue, and the cracks and crevices of Cochise Stronghold, 60 miles away, can be clearly seen. This viewshed--the wonderland of rocks--is what visitors come to see. Chiricahua National Monument is designated a Class I airshed under the Clean Air Act, which requires the highest level of air-quality protection. Many National Parks and wilderness areas are designated Class I, but not all of them have clean air. Many parks in the eastern U.S. and elsewhere are suffering the consequences of air pollution from nearby urban areas, including the detrimental impacts of acid rain and ozone. State and Federal regulations attempt to curtail actions that may detrimentally affect air quality or the public health, but it is sometimes difficult to determine where air pollution is coming from, and even more difficult to correct the problem.

The monument maintains an Air Quality Station which tracks visibility, particulates, ozone, nitrates, sulfides, dioxins, and rainwater deposition. This data is analyzed and used to determine overall air quality, and factors or events that may be having detrimental effects on the air. This information can help managers decide what future actions may be necessary to maintain the current level of air quality, or to make improvements. The monument's close proximity to Mexico makes it a prime candidate for monitoring the effect of Mexico's pollution on air quality in the United States. Smelting, manufacturing and power plants on the other side of the border produce pollutants that can be carried into the monument. That, along with plans to build an additional incinerator and power plants within 50 miles of the monument, makes it even more critical that baseline air quality data be collected.

Air quality data from 48 Class 1 NPS sites and others can be viewed on the Internet. See the links below.

Did You Know?

CCC members

Civilian Conservation Corps enrollees of NM-2-A, Company 828, were stationed at Chiricahua National Monument from 1934-1940. The men improved the scenic drive, created the hiking trails, and built most of the structures in use today.