Chiricahua Wilderness

Located in the Coronado National Forest in Arizona.

Established in 1933 at 18,000 acres, Chiricahua Wilderness was greatly expanded by the 1984 Arizona Wilderness Act and now encompasses 87,700 acres within the Chiricahua Mountains. There is wide variation in elevation, exposure, slope, moisture, and related plant and animal life. There are many unusual birds which are more common in Mexico.

More than a century ago the mountains were hunting grounds for Cochise and Geronimo. From here Cochise and his followers defended their homeland with surprise attacks on pioneer settlements, travelers, and Army troops. Later, the mountains were part of the short-lived Chiricahua Apache Reservation.

Because of dense brush and timber, steep slopes, precipitous canyons and uncertain water, travel is difficult except on the well-developed trail system. Campgrounds outside the boundaries provide good access for day hiking.

For further information contact: Douglas Ranger District - Coronado National Forest

Published: 29 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 27 May 2011
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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