We lived in Arizona for ten years before we even knew the Lava Tube River Cave existed. Our kids were so excited to go caving. The Lava River Tube Cave is 14-miles north of Flagstaff.
You will drive down paved road US 180 and continue on two unpaved forest roads to reach the cave. There are no facilities in this area, so it is wise to plan accordingly. Once you reach the parking area and a short walk through the trees to reach the cave.
Inside the Lava Tube River Cave
The cave is cold even in the summer there was actually still ice inside when we visited. So it is a good idea to wear long sleeves and jeans. It is also very dark you will need a flashlight, but a headlamps are even better.
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We purchased inexpensive headlamps . It is nice to be able to have your hands free while exploring the cave.
The interior of the cave is very uneven, so a good pair of hiking boots would prevent twisted ankles. The cave is about 3/4 of a mile to the end, with one way in and one way out. This “tube” cave formed from hardened molten lave hundreds of thousands of years ago. This is a really cool hike, especially in the summer.
If you are looking for something different and a fun hike you will not forget this is a great one to experience. The kids loved it.
How to Get to the Lava Tubes
Directions: From Flagstaff, take US 180 like you are going to Snowbowl, continue on and turn left at Forest Road 245 (dirt road) drive for 3 miles, then turn left on FR171 and drive 1 mile to cave.
For more information visit the website Coconino National Forest