• Visitors hike along the base of the Gila Cliff Dwellings.

    Gila Cliff Dwellings

    National Monument New Mexico

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  • Thunderstorm Safety Closures Possible

    When thunderstorms are nearby, the trail to and from the Gila Cliff Dwellings is closed. Please check local forecasts before you visit. Thunderstorms are typically more likely in the afternoon. On some afternoons it is not possible to reopen. More »

  • Tour of the Gila may Impact Area Traffic

    If you are planning a visit between April 30 and May 4, be aware that area traffic may be impacted by the annual Tour of the Gila bicycle road race. For more information about the race, please visit tourofthegila.com. More »

  • Fire Restrictions on Gila National Forest

    Gila National Forest will implement smoking and fire restrictions beginning April 22. Smoking and fires are never permitted on Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument property. More »

Feast or Famine? Document L

Document: L

Title: Gila Cliff Dwellings an Introduction to Plants and Animals in the Area

Author: James Kavanagh

Source: A pocket naturalist guide

Animals common to Gila Cliff Dwellings


Turkey vulture

Golden eagle

Bald eagle

Red-tailed hawk

American kestrel

Common black-hawk

Great blue heron

Steller's Jay

Common Raven

Gambel's Quail

Wild Turkey

Pinyon Jay

Canyon Wren

Violet-green Swallow

Blue Grosbeak

Northern Flicker

Acorn Woodpecker

Western Bluebird

Black-chinned Hummingbird

Black-headed Grosbeak

Rufous Hummingbird

Spotted Towhee

Broad-tailed Hummingbird

Black-tailed Rattlesnake

Gopher Snake

Western Ribbon Snake

Crevice Spiny Lizard

Short-horned Lizard

Eastern Fence Lizard

Tiger Salamander

Gila Whiptail

Collared Lizard


Box Turtle

Canyon Treefrog

Black-tailed Jackrabbit

Desert Cottontail

Abert's Squirrel

Rock Squirrel

Gray Fox

White-nosed Coati

Mexican Gray Wolf

Striped Skunk


Hooded Skunk


Mule Deer


Mountain Lion


American Beaver

Black Bear

Kavanagh, James. The Archeology of Gila Cliff Dwellings. 1. Tucson: Western Archeological and Conservation Center, 1986. Print.

Did You Know?

Mortar Handprint

The Gila Cliff Dwellings were built in the 13th century by the ancient Puebloans of the Mogollon area. They formed the walls using chunks of Gila Conglomerate found within the caves. Mortar was required to keep the walls together. In some places you can still see the handprints of the builders.