|The remains of Fort Bowie today are carefully preserved, the adobe walls
of various post buildings and the ruins of a Butterfield Stage Station. It stands as a
lasting monument to the bravery and endurance of U.S. soldiers in paving the way for
westward settlement and the taming of the western frontier. It also serves to give us an
understanding of the "clash of cultures," one a young emerging nation in pursuit
of its "manifest destiny," the other a valiant hunter/gatherer society fighting
to preserve its existence. Apache resistance was finally crushed at Fort Bowie, and the
result was the end of the Indian wars in the United States.
- 11,022 in 1994
- Fort Bowie National Historic Site
c\o Superintendent Chiricahua National Monument
Dos Cabezas Route Box 6500
Willcox, AZ 85643
- (520) 847-2500
- OPERATING HOURS, SEASONS:
- Visitor Center: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., daily. Closed Christmas Day. Ruins Trail hours
are from sunrise to sunset. Peak season is from March until May.
- CLIMATE, RECOMMENDED CLOTHING:
- Summers are hot. Carry water and have sun protection. Temperatures may climb above 100
degrees Fahrenheit. Winter - snow may briefly blanket the area. High winds are possible
with below freezing wind chills from October to April.
Clothing: During the summer,
light clothing is recommended. Always carry rain gear and protection against the sun.
During the winter, wear warm clothing. Sturdy hiking boots, with good ankle support, are
also recommended when hiking the trails.
- From Willcox drive southeast for 20 miles on State #186 to the Fort Bowie turn off, then
drive another eight miles on the unpaved road to the Fort Bowie Trailhead. Be prepared to
walk the three miles round trip to the ruins and back to your car.
From the town of
Bowie, the trailhead is located on Apache Pass Road, 13 miles south.
The park is 116 miles east of Tucson via I-10, and 227 miles from Phoenix.
- Privately owned vehicle. There is no public transportation to Fort Bowie. Airline
service to Tucson (116 miles) and rental cars are available.
- FEES, COSTS, RATES:
- FACILITIES AND OPPORTUNITIES:
- Visitor Center/Exhibits:
Visitor center with historic exhibits, book sales on the Apache campaign, the Butterfield
mail route, and military history during this period.
- Lodging and camping facilities:
- There is no camping or overnight facilities in the park. Closest accommodations are in
the towns of Bowie and Willcox.
- No food services or gasoline are available. Closest services are in the towns of Bowie
- Access to the fort is by a one and one-half mile trail (three miles round trip),
moderately strenuous. Special access for mobility impaired visitors can be obtained by
calling (520) 847- 2500 or by writing directly to the park.
- RECOMMENDED ACTIVITIES/PARK USE:
- The hike in to the fort is part of the Fort Bowie experience. Visitors can get a sense
of the lonely isolation that the soldiers experienced while stationed there. The trail
also winds past remains of a Butterfield Stage Coach Station, the post cemetery, an Apache
Wickiup, the Chiricahua Apache Indian Agency, Apache Springs, the original fort and
finally the more elaborate Fort Bowie and the visitor center. A minimum of two hours is
recommended for the round trip visit.
While at the fort, visitors can tour the ruins of
Fort Bowie, view the exhibits inside the visitor center, bird watch, and hike the trails.
Picnic facilities are located at the trailhead and the visitor center.
- BASIC VISIT RECOMMENDATIONS:
- Allow at least two hours for the tour. Return via the overlook trail for great views of
the fort and the battle site. Wear sturdy walking shoes and bring water.
- ADJACENT VISITOR ATTRACTIONS:
- Chiricahua National Monument - offers hiking, picnicking, camping, bird watching (21
mile drive); Coronado National Memorial - offers hiking, picnicking (115 miles);
Tombstone/Bisbee - historic mining towns (120/140 miles); Fort Huachuca Army Post at
Sierra Vista (museum & exhibits) 105 miles); Rex Allen Museum in Willcox - memorabilia
from cowboy movies for the late 1940's - 1950's (30 miles); Steins (restored ghost town)
near AZ/New Mexico line (30 miles).
- ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:
- Call (520) 847-2500 or Park Headquarters at Chiricahua (520) 824-3560.