No backcountry camping is allowed in Chiricahua, so all campers must camp in the Bonita Campground or the nearby national forest. Collecting Firewood and building fires outside of fire rings is not allowed. If you are a rock climber be aware that rock climbing is not allowed within the national monument. Bicycling is only allowed on the paved roadways. If you are traveling with a dog be aware that no pets are allowed on any wilderness trail.
There are signs at most trailheads in the Chiricahuas giving general warnings about: Dangerous animals in the area like cougars, black bears, and rattlesnakes; dangerous cliffs; so stay on the designated trails; wear proper clothing for the time of year especially good walking shoes; drink lots of water (this is important in both hot and cold weather); be aware of the weather forecast, flash floods are common in July and August and snowstorms can occur November through March; let a relative, friend, or the visitor center know where you plan to hike and when you plan to return.
Periodically, you will see a line of rocks protruding from the ground and crossing the trail at an angle (see the photo). These are there to direct water from a rainfall off the trail to keep the trail from eroding. If you do not watch yourself, you can trip over these obstacles.
Some of the trails have signs warning to watch for falling rocks. These rocks are constantly eroding and sometimes fall. Pay close attention to your surroundings. Make sure the rock you are standing on, and the one above your head, is stable.
As always, in the desert, water must be carried and conserved. Water is only to be found at the Visitor Center and the Campground. Take protection against the sun as well. Being in a higher elevation allows the suns rays to do their work quicker and harsher.
The biggest risk in this part of the country as a whole is the risk of dehydration. If you plan on spending anytime at all outside, bring plenty of water. And not just a water bottle, bring a cammelback or a couple of canteens! It is desert climate and can get up to over 110 on the desert floor! Also, keep an eye out for rattlesnakes...
Even though the Chiricahua National Monument is in Southern Arizona, we do get snow here. Watch your step when there is ice and snow on the trail.
Some of the trails are open to horses, bikes, and hikers and some are more restricted. These restrictions are for your safety and the safety of our fellow travelers. Please follow them.
There are authorized firepits in several areas of the park. Use them. Please help prevent fire damage to our parks.