Visitor Center is closed
The Visitor Center and bookstore will be closed for several weeks for construction. A temporary Visitor Center will be set up in the parking lot. The trail to the Lower Cliff Dwelling will be open during this period. No entrance fees will be collected.
Guided tours are offered to the Upper Cliff Dwelling at 10:00 a.m., from November through the end of April. Three or four tours are given weekly, depending on staffing. Tours are limited to 15 people and often fill quickly; call 928) 467-2241 for reservations.
The trail to the Upper Cliff Dwelling is a backcountry trail. The first half of the trail meanders through a wash while gaining elevation, and requires negotiating shallow water, and some climbing on large rocks. The second half of the trail winds steeply via switchbacks and requires climbing a total of about 60 unevenly spaced steps. Keep in mind that reaching the dwelling is only half of the hike; you must return via the same route.
The hike is 3 miles round trip, with an elevation gain of 600 feet. The tour takes 3 to 4 hours. Your guide will keep a moderate pace and stop frequently to talk about natural and cultural history. Rarely, a tour may be canceled due to extreme weather conditions or possible flash flooding. If we can anticipate this, we will try to call you.
You should consider this hike if:
1. You hike on a regular basis.
You should avoid this hike if:
1. You have had a serious illness, injury, or surgery recently and have not yet fully recovered.
Did You Know?
Tonto National Monument is home to a crested saguaro. Botanists disagree as to why some saguaros grow in this unusual form. Some speculate that it is a genetic mutation. Others say it is the result of lightning or freeze damage. About one in 150,000 saguaros develop this unusual growth.