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Dec 06

Lava Flow Trail: Sunset Crater National Monument

Lava Flow Trail
The best hike in the Sunset Crater National Monument in Arizona is the Lava Flow Trail.  A short mile long loop that explores the volcanic landscape.  Overlooked by the San Francisco Peaks and Sunset Crater the Lava Flow Trail offers the best scenery in the park.   The Lava Flow Trail is an interpretive loop hike with numbered signs that coincide with an informational pamphlet that explains the area.
Volcanic Activity
The trail is flat, divideds up into two sections.  The upper part of the Lava Flow Trail is an all-access paved sidewalk that has information kiosks to read.  A set of metal stars leads to the lower portion of the Lava Flow Trail.  This part of the hike allows for a closer inspection of the volcanic activity that swept through the area. If you are able make sure to take the lower section of the trail.  From walking on the crushed volcanic cinders to seeing some splatter cones makes for a more interesting time at Crater National Monument.
Hiking the Lava Flow Trail
Sunset Crater National Monument as well as the other monuments in the area are worth visiting. However, they can be a bit costly for what they are.  The best bang for your dollar will come if you buy a National Parks Season Pass especially if you are going to visit the Grand Canyon.  The pass lasts for a year from the time it is purchased.  If you travel a lot or have a park or monument close to your home it will easily pay for itself after a few visits.  I have always found that I enjoy places a lot more if I am not thinking about the cost of admission.  A parks pass comes in handy for places like Sunset Crater National Monument because by itself it is not worth the price of admission, but definitely worth seeing if it is not going to lighten your wallet.

To see our reviews of other Arizona attractions, click here
A Splash of Aspen
Lava Flow Trail
Trailhead located at the main parking lot of Sunset Crater National Monument
1 mile Loop Trail
Plan for about 30 minutes
Difficulty: Easy

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