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Home National & State Parks Other NPs Gila Cliff Dwellings Reopen to Park Visitors

Gila Cliff Dwellings Reopen to Park Visitors

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Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument in New Mexico reopened to the public Jan. 10, 2012 following completion of repair work to the West Fork Bridge on Highway 15.

The repairs were necessary due to damage caused by flooding in 2008 and 2010, said Gila Cliff Dwellings. Superintendent Steve Riley.

cave_3The cliff dwellings will remain open every day from 9 am to 4 pm. There is a $3 fee per adult to visit the dwellings. Guided tours are offered at 1 pm every day except during busy holiday weekends.

Rangers also advised visitors use caution when visiting the area. The 88,000-acre Miller Fire burned through the area in May, 2011 and created hazards. Visitors in burned-over areas should be alert for burned-out stump holes and potentially hazardous trees.

Tours start at the cliff dwellings. It takes about one-half hour to walk up to the cliff dwellings from the trailhead, so plan ahead. Visitors may walk the self-guided trail to the cliff dwellings anytime during park hours. Volunteer Interpretive Park Rangers are on duty during park hours to help answer questions.

Visitors should carry water, dress for the weather and wear sturdy shoes suitable for potentially icy and muddy trail conditions.

The half-mile hiking trail to the cliff dwellings is steep and uneven in places and includes numerous steps. The trail is not wheelchair accessible. Views of some of the cliff dwellings are possible after a quarter-mile hike in the canyon bottom.

A temporary visitor center, located in a trailer in front of the Gila Visitor Center, remains open to the public from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. every day while interior repairs to the permanent visitor center continue.

Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument offers visitors a glimpse into the homes and lives of the Mogollon people who lived in this area over 700 years ago.

The monument is surrounded by the Gila National Forest and lies within the rugged Gila Wilderness, the nation's first wilderness area.

The wilderness designation means that the wilderness character of the area will not be altered by the intrusion of roads or other evidence of human presence.

For up-to-date information about Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument, call the Gila Visitor Center at (575) 536-9461 or visit the web site at
www.nps.gov/gicl .

 
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