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White House Ruin Professional Review and Guide
"Like Navajo National Monument, Canyon de Chelly National Monument includes some well-preserved Ancestral Pueblo People cliff dwellings found within the Navajo Indian Nation. Because of the fragile nature of the ruins, and to protect the privacy of the Navajo families who live here, hiking in Canyon de Chelly is permitted only when accompanied by a ranger or authorized Navajo guide. An exception to this rule is the short and pleasant hike to White House Ruin."
--Scott S. Warren, 100 Classic Hikes Arizona (The Mountaineers Books).
Trail is short and quick. Going down is super easy. The climb up is harder but not exhausting. Awesome ruin at the bottom of a huge cliff.
This is a beautiful hike to one of the most famous and photogenic ruins in Arizona. Give yourself plenty of time to gaze at the ruins, you will not be able to tear your eyes away. An iconic image of the great Southwest.
We hiked it in mid-afternoon, but I'm sure the lighting would be wonderful late in the day. There is a pit toilet at the site but no water, so be sure to bring some.
We hiked this with our 6-year old and had no significant safety concerns, but there are a couple of spots where the trail is basically a ledge carved out of slickrock, need to take care there.
At the top of the trail, do watch your young ones. We observed more than one small child race to the edge of the cliff, excited to get their first glimpse of this marvelous canyon. The canyon attracts lots of foreign visitors. Luckily no accidents this time, but as a mother my heart did a flip-flop!
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