DescriptionGila Cliff Dwellings National Monument is a minimum 2-hour drive 44 miles north of Silver City via SR 15; vehicles pulling trailers 20 feet or longer should use SR 35 north from San Lorenzo. In this rough and desolate country near the west fork of the Gila (HEE-la) River, seven natural cavities indent the face of a cliff some 175 feet above the canyon floor. Five of these hollows contain rooms constructed during the late 13th century by people of the Mogollon culture—these remain the focus of the monument.
A 1-mile hiking trail loops from the contact station to the dwellings. The Gila Visitor Center is 2 miles south of the monument entrance. Guided 1-hour tours of the cliff dwellings depart daily at 1 from the dwellings themselves (allow 30 minutes to walk from the trailhead). Pets are not permitted on the monument trails; free kennels are available.
Trail to dwellings open daily 9-5 (last entry 1 hour before closing). Visitor center open daily 8-4:30. Admission $3; free (ages 0-15 and Federal Recreational Lands Pass holders); $10 (family). Exact change is required and may be obtained at the visitor center. Self-guiding trail pamphlets and travel guide brochures are available at no cost. Phone (575) 536-9461.
GEM DescriptionThese historic caves were inhabited by the people of the Mogollon culture during the late 1200s and early 1300s.