Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument

Quick Facts

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument

Arizona

(520) 387-6849

Map Directions

Things To Do

Overview

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument celebrates the life and landscape of the Sonoran Desert. In this desert wilderness, you may drive a lonely road, hike a backcountry trail, camp beneath a clear desert sky, marvel at magnificent cactus, or soak in the warmth and beauty of the Southwest.

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument celebrates the life and landscape of the Sonoran Desert. Here, in this desert wilderness of plants and animals and dramatic mountains and plains scenery, you can drive a lonely road, hike a backcountry trail, camp beneath a clear desert sky, or just soak in the warmth and beauty of the Southwest. The Monument exhibits an extraordinary collection of plants of the Sonoran Desert, including the organ pipe cactus, a large cactus rarely found in the United States. There are also many creatures that have been able to adapt themselves to extreme temperatures, intense sunlight and little rainfall.

Map of Organ Pipe Cactus

Latitude, Longitude: 31.954503, -112.801257

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Activities

  • Bicycling

    Bikes are allowed on all roads open to vehicle traffic. The Ajo Mountain Drive (21 miles) is a popular biking road, many choose to go opposite the flow of traffic. Please bike defensively, many drivers are looking out the windows at the beautiful scenery and may not be expecting a bicyclist. There are no hiking trails open to bicycling. Please also carry a way to secure your bicycle, if you plan on leaving it for any period of time, anywhere in the monument.

  • Auto/Motorcycle

    The easiest way to see the splendor of this park is to take a scenic drive. The most popular is the Ajo Mountain Drive. It is a 21 mile, mostly gravel, road usually passable by normal passenger car. RVs over 24 feet are prohibited, due to the twisting and dipping nature of the road. During the winter and early spring (January-March) Ranger guided van tours are available. Sign up at the Kris Eggle Visitor Center for a seat on the van.

    The Puerto Blanco Drive is the other popular road in the park. This road has been reconstructed for five miles provideding access to the Pinkley Peak Picnic Area. Several stops along the way provide wonderful views and information on the ecology and culture of the Sonoran Desert. The remainder of the Puerto Blanco and Pozo Nuevo Roads are closed.

  • Camping

    Imagine the true darkness that only pure, deep desert can provide. The star-filled skies above hold almost no glow from nearby cities, allowing amazing star and moon gazing. The stillness is broken only by the songs of the coyotes.

    The Twin Peaks Campground invites you to stay as your home away from home. RVs up to 40 feet in length and tenters are welcome too. Hookups for electricity,water, or sewer not available. Water is dispersed throughout the campground, with a dump-and-fill station and running water in the bathrooms.

    Alamo Canyon Campground is set aside for tent campers and requires registration at the Kris Eggle Visitor Center. Tenters should ask about the Alamo Campground. It is a four (4) site car campground with no water, but wonderful scenic quality and serenity. It is first-come, first-serve only, and registrations must be made in person at the Kris Eggle Visitor Center before occupying a campsite.

    There is also a group campground, contact the Kris Eggle Visitor Center to reserve a spot for your next get together with friends. There is no electricity in the sites, but the bathroom does have both running water and electricity.

    Backcountry areas are closed indefinitely to overnight camping due to an increase in illegal border activity.

  • Hiking

    There are miles and miles of trails laced around Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument. Some are easy, others are strenuous, most of them fall somewhere in between. Some of the best hiking is off the beaten trails and out in the canyons with a map and compass to guide you.

    Hiking trails that are open and easily accessible include the Visitor Center Nature Trail, Palo Verde Trail (pet friendly), Desert View Trail, Campground perimeter trail (pet friendly), Victoria Mine Trail, please stay on the trail, Estes Canyon Trail (Ajo Mountain area), Bull Pasture Trail (Ajo Mountain area), Arch Canyon Trail (Ajo Mountain area), and Alamo Canyon Trail.

  • Horseback Riding

    Please contact the park for information on horseback riding.

  • Picnicking

    Feel free to stop and enjoy your lunch on a scenic drive through the park. Please be considerate of the wilderness and do not litter.

Seasonality/Weather

Most visitors come to enjoy the warmth that winter here has to offer. During the months of December, January and February, day-time highs can be in the mid-60s to mid-70s. Night time lows can be chilly, down in the 30s. Not too bad, considering the folks up north are shoveling snow that time of year. Use the links at the top of this section to see what options may be available to you during your visit with us.

The Kris Eggle Visitor Center is open daily from 8am to 5pm Mountain Standard time, excluding Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. Even if the Kris Eggle Visitor Center is closed, the remainder of the park, including the beautiful Ajo Mountain Drive, is open every day including all holidays.

Directions

Driving

From the NORTH: follow AZ Hwy 85 through Ajo and Why. The Monument is 22 miles (35.4 km) south of Why.

From the EAST: follow AZ Hwy 86 to Why, then turn south on AZ Hwy 85.

From the WEST: follow I-8 to Gila Bend or I-10 to Buckeye, then turn south on AZ Hwy 85.

From MEXICO: drive on Mexico Route 2 to Sonoyta, then north to Lukeville.

Flying

Nearest airports are in Phoenix and Tuscon, then by private vehicle.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(520) 387-6849

Links