“A half mile trail that leads to Coronado Cave, one of the few open, undeveloped caves in southern Arizona.”
— David Hitchcock
Even though the trail to the cave is steep and rocky, most kids can handle this hike. The cave at the end is enjoyable for kids of all ages and fun to explore.
Coronado National Memorial is open year-round from civil twilight dawn to civil twilight dusk (approximately 1/2 hour before sunrise to 1/2 hour after sunset). The park closes each night and visitors are expected to be back from hikes and activities 1/2 hour after sunset.
Cave regulations can be found here: nps.gov/coro/planyourvisit/…
The trailhead for the Coronado Cave Trail is roughly 0.25 mile past the visitor center on the right hand side of the road. From the parking area, the trail departs north from the road and begins climbing toward the cave. The trail switches back crossing a stream bed, which is dry most of the year, then begins to climb more steeply over rocky terrain; after this point as it makes its way toward the cave.
As you get closer to the cave, stone steps are cut into the trail to help maintain the trail and aid hikers with the steep ascent. When you arrive at the mouth of the cave, you must scramble down some tall rocks to get to the cave entrance. While the trail ends here, your adventure at Coronado Cave is just beginning, as you can explore as much or as little of the cave as you desire.
Once you have explored the cave, follow the trail back down to the parking lot and your vehicle. Enjoy the views of the San Pedro River Valley and the surrounding mountains as you go.
Flora & Fauna
You may come across deer, javelina, and other animals that call the desert home as you climb toward the cave. Once you get to the cave, you may encounter bats, which call the cave home.