The Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument will reopen at 9 a.m. Thursday, June 17, Acting Park Superintendent Jerome Flood announced Wednesday evening.,
The park, about 45 miles north of Silver City, has been closed since June 1 because of the Johnson Fire.
Fire managers have now determined that visitors can now safely return and visit the cliff dwellings.
Visitors will be able to view the cliff dwellings from the trail in Cliff Dweller Canyon but will not be able to enter the caves.
Cliff Dweller Road and N.M. Highway 15 to the Gila Visitor Center Parking lot will be open. Fire management vehicles and personnel will be using these roads during fire operations. Visitors are reminded to travel cautiously when encountering fire traffic. The Cliff Dwellings Bookstore at the Contact Center is now reopened as well. The Middle Fork Trail No. 157 is now accessible too . Visitors/users of the Middle Fork Trail are requested to park in the Gila Visitor Center parking lot rather than the trailhead parking lot, as the road to the trailhead will remain closed for visitor safety.
The Upper and Lower Scorpion Campgrounds, West Fork Trailhead, Woody’s Corral and TJ’s Corral Trailhead will remain closed due to fire personnel occupying these areas. The Gila National Forest temporary area closure, which applies to the Gila Wilderness, will remain in effect until rescinded. You can access maps and fire information at https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/7493/.
For more information: call 575-536-2250 (Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.) or 575-519-0103 (any time between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.). The number for the Gila Cliff Dwellings is 575-536-9461. If there is no answer, leave a message or call back later as their phones are staffed intermittently.