Lower Cliff Dwelling Trail
ElevationAscent: 337' 103 m
Descent: 0' 0 m
High: 3,159' 963 m
Low: 2,822' 860 m
GradeAvg Grade: 14% (8°)
Max Grade: 92% (43°)
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“A paved trail that leads from the visitor center to the Lower Cliff Dwellings and great views.”— David Hitchcock
Made out of concrete, the trail is free of obstacles. The trail climbs continuously until it gets to the Lower Cliff Dwelling, so take your time and utilize the benches and rest areas along the way. As the trail climbs up the hillside, Saguaro cacti grow along the trail. Not long after starting, the Cactus Patch Trail comes in from the left. The trail cuts back to the right and continues climbing the hillside. At roughly 0.2 miles, sweeping views of Theodore Roosevelt Lake come into the view. The trail climbs a little more before cutting back to the left and heading straight toward the Cliff Dwelling.
Following the ridge line, the trail arrives at the entrance to the Lower Cliff Dwelling. Read about the original entrance and how it was used by the people for protection from intruders. The trail cuts back to the right, climbs some stairs, and arrives at the Lower Cliff Dwelling.
There is usually a volunteer or park staff member at the cliff dwelling to answer any questions you may have, and can provide a map of the dwelling in case you left yours at the visitor center or in your vehicle. Take time to enjoy the preserved ruins, contemplate what it was like for the people who lived there, and enjoy the views of the surrounding area.
Be respectful of the ruins and help preserve them for future generations by only going where you are allowed and staying out of closed areas.
As the Lower Cliff Dwelling does not require reservations, this is a popular trail throughout the day. The trail is crowded with families and pets, so take your time and enjoy.
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