Hikes and Trails
Allow at least 1 hour to stop at the Visitor Center and hike the Lava Flow Trail. If you have additional time, hike the Lenox Crater Trail and the Aa Flow trail, or enjoy the view from the Cinder Hills Overlook. Use caution when hiking - lava is sharp, brittle, and unstable.
The Lava Flow Trail is a 1-mile (1.6km) trail with a .25 mile (.4km) accessible loop. Self-guiding trail booklets are available for purchase in the Visitor Center.
Two trails leave from the Lenox Crater parking lot. The Lenox Crater Trail is a steep 1-mile (1.6km) round trip and requires about 30 minutes up and 15 minutes walking down! The .2 mile (.3 km) Aa Flow Trail (pronounced AH-ah) winds down through the lava flow, giving you an up close look at the basalt formations.
Backcountry hiking is not allowed in order to protect fragile geological and archeolgocial features. Please stay on designated trails.
You can also hike to O'Leary Peak on a 7-mile (11.2km) Forest Service trail.
Pets must be kept on a leash at all times. They are not allowed in buildings or on trails in the national monument.
Did You Know?
Legend says that 19th-century explorer John Wesley Powell named Sunset Crater Volcano because its rim of red and yellow cinders suggested the colors of a perpetual sunset.