Fort Bowie witnessed almost 25 years of conflict between the Chiricahua Apache and the US Army, and remains a tangible connection to the turbulent era of the late 1800s. Explore the history of Fort Bowie and Apache Pass as you hike the 1.5 mile trail to the visitor center and old fort ruins. Today, this peaceful landscape stands in stark contrast to the violence that once gripped this land.
The story of Apache Pass and the events that led to the establishment of Fort Bowie are told on a 3-mile roundtrip hike from the trailhead on Apache Pass Road to the visitor center and Second Fort Ruins. Considered by most to be a "moderate" hike, the just under 200 foot elevation gain, uneven terrain and semi-arid desert environment can prove to be a tad too much for some park visitors.
To use this alternative access, follow the car directions, but look for the ADA accessible icon signs from Apache Pass Road. Passenger vehicles can travel South Old Fort Bowie Road until it dead-ends in a small administrative area at Fort Bowie NHS. From the ADA parking lot, visitors follow a trail that is 500 feet in length and ascends approximately 80 feet in elevation to reach the visitor center at the edge of the second fort ruins. If unable to climb the steps, visitors can arrange to have a gate opened that allows them todrive a vehicle to the visitor center and unload wheelchair users or other folks with limited mobility. Because this method traverses fragile parkresources, it is reserved as a limited option for those folks that are unable to visit the fort ruins without it.
Contact the visitor center staff at 520-847-2500, ext. 25, for more information on accessing Fort Bowie NHS. Please note parking is not available in the administrative area for buses, RVs, or trailers.