Plan a Tour to Chimney Rock National Monument

Chimney Rock National Monument is a protected archaeological site with limited access  through tours only from May 15 through October 15th.  There is no entry fee at the Monument; tour fees covering these “expanded amenities” are the the only fees.  All tours begin at the visitor cabin where fees are collected. Guests then drive in their own vehicles to the high mesa.  Only people on tours may drive to the mesa top.  The drive is 2  1/2 miles up a steep , winding gravel road to the upper parking lot (7,400 feet elevation), where Self-Guided Tours begin.  The ancient structures are not visible from the mesa top.  Tours do not climb Chimney Rock nor Companion Rock. No reservations required. Rain Checks are offered for special events due to cancellation. 

 

 

Trail Descriptions

Great House Pueblo Trail


This trail has awe-inspiring 360 degree views of the San Juan Mountain range and the twin spires from the Great House Pueblo.  It is a moderately challenging unimproved trail with a 200-foot elevation gain and exposure to heights.  This trail includes a multi-family dwelling, several unexcavated structures and a Chacoan Great House Pueblo (7,600-feet elevation.)

Mesa Village Trail


Experience the beautiful overlook of the Piedra River Valley and Peterson Ridge on this one-third mile paved trail.  This trial includes a 44-foot excavated Great Kiva as well as an excavated pit house and other structures.

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Tour Options

SELF-GUIDED TOURS: $12/adult & $6/child (ages 5-12)

The entire site can be experienced through self-guided tours available between 9:00 am and 3:15 pm daily.  The drive to the upper mesa parking area takes approx. 15 minutes, the lower Mesa Village Trail takes approx. 30 minutes round trip and the upper Great House Mesa trail takes approx. 1 hour round trip. Our main entrance gates close at 4:30 pm and all vehicles must exit the monument by that time.

Suggested Tour times:

  • Both trails: lower Mesa Village and upper Great House Pueblo trails – we suggest you start your tour no later than 2:30 pm.
  • Upper Great House Pueblo trail only: we suggest you start your tour no later than 3:00 pm.
  • Lower Mesa Village trail only: we suggest you start your tour no later than 3:15 pm.

These time allotments will allow you ample time to learn about the site from your self-guided tour brochure, take in the views and enjoy photo opportunities along the way.

There are two ways to enjoy an self-guided tour:

  • Printed interpretive brochure
  • Download the San Juan National Forest app before you arrive at Chimney Rock, purchase your self-guided tour at the Visitor cabin and receive a pin so you can use your own phone or device.