White House Ruin Trail

HARD 69 reviews

White House Ruin Trail is a 2.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Chinle, Arizona that offers scenic views and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round.

2.7 miles
551 feet
Out & Back

kid friendly



nature trips



historic site

no dogs

White House Ruin Trail, which descends nearly 600 feet down the cliffs on the south side of Canyon de Chelly, crosses the seasonal Chinle Wash and ends beside one of the most famous ancient dwellings in the monument, a two-level structure with one part on the valley floor and the other 50 feet up in an alcove. Typical round trip times for the trail are 1 to 2 hours, and the path is wide, well-used and not too steep.

20 days ago

Not a hard trail at all. Easy to moderate. Many areas are flat. Take water as it is a down and back hike. Best in the late afternoon.

27 days ago

The hike is really easy, my brother (16) and I (18) did it in about an hour with one break on the way back up. The views on the hike are really nice and the trail is well maintained. The actual ruins are cool, but there are better ones if you do the North rim drive and stop at the Mummy Caves

1 month ago

Breathtaking, peaceful and well with the effort. Navajo jewelry for sale at ther bottom of ther canyon so bring your wallet and lots of water! Hike early to stay cool.

1 month ago

Hiked in July at 7am, with our 8 year old. Going down was obviously very easy, going up wasn’t as bad as I thought. From the base of the canyon wall to the top took about 35 minutes with about 3 short breaks. Prior to our decent we did see a black bear to the east in the canyon walking in the opposite direction after being mooed off by a stubborn cow. The ruins are pretty neat and worth checking out.

2 months ago

Had no idea this place existed, just thought it was an overlook, but how was I happy to learn you could hike down into the canyon and it was a great workout! I met a man who said there used to be races and that many trained to be mail runners from town to town back in the old days. Awesome history and natural walkways, not even 50% man-made stairs, but rather very cool walking paths.

2 months ago

This trail is moderate rated at best. Start around 4 PM to stay in the shade on the way down to the canyon floor. After that it's some dirt and sand till you reach the ruins. There's restrooms at the bottom. The ruins are blocked off by a fence so you can't get close, bring a telephoto lens and stand on something to get the fence out of the pictures. Honestly, it's not worth going down into the canyon. Seek out far older and better ruins in AZ where you're allowed to enter and explore, there's plenty. The view from below is rather dull, you'll get the best views from the top and midway on the trail down.

3 months ago

Hiked in late afternoon/early evening mid May, lots of shade. Due to the time of year, we experienced strong wind gusts of sand. Sunglasses helped.
Mild temps, but still bring plenty of water.
Beautiful ruins, but panhandling at viewpoints was an annoyance.

3 months ago

A hidden gem and not very busy. Very few people on the trail. Did it in two and a half hours with a few stops. Very relaxing and wonderful views.

4 months ago

Not so hard , (we did this hike in 2h)considering the elevation is only 600feet and the hike is close to 3 miles round trip. Views was outstanding. We started at 9am and had the canyon only for us. We saw few hikers on the way up. Make sure to take water with you and use restroom before you start hiking. There is restroom on the bottom of the canyon.

4 months ago

Good trail down to the ruins and back up.

5 months ago

nice not too crowded

5 months ago

Gorgeous views. Definitely do it again!

5 months ago

Such a fun hike that took a little under 2 hours for my group. Everyone was so nice and great to talk to! We went in February and passed a few people but basically walked by ourselves for most of it. The views were spectacular and the hike itself wasn’t too bad.

6 months ago

nice hike before sunset - fascinating colors

7 months ago

amazing! great hike with amazing views of the canyon and the dwellings at the end.

9 months ago

Great trail! Drops over 600 feet to the valley floor. Beautiful valley but in a very remote location. Take the jeep tour to Spider Rock if your in the area.

10 months ago

Descente dans le Canyon de Chelly très agréable. On se demande bien par où le chemin passe dans la falaise, mais en fait il y a un petit tunnel qui permet de déboucher dans un éboulis. Chemin très bien tracé et très praticable.
La vue sur la falaise avec les ruines est époustouflante.

11 months ago

Cool trail down to White House ruins. Keep toddlers close. Some steep drops and no rails.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Nice hike down to the ruins. Beautiful views of the red rocks and cliffs along the way. If you're from a region that's at sea level (like me), the ascent might be challenging on a hot day (think I had a touch of altitude sickness with exertion) but I recovered quickly and well. Would definitely recommend as it is cool to get up to the actual ruins. Bring lots of water! You're exposed most of the time but there are quite a few shady areas for rest.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

accomplished this trail on Sunday and very much enjoyed it. although it's rated easy, it's 1.5 mile back up! all incline! I'm not in shape, but I would do this walk again in a heartbeat

Monday, April 17, 2017

beautiful and easy! the only trail that opens to public in the NM but def worth it. nice red rock canyon, some of the part looks like the WAVE formation, and high giant canyon wall at the end. A lot of birds!

Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Very easy trail with a rewarding view! We were there during fresh snow so it's very quiet and beautiful

Thursday, November 10, 2016

This trail is more for the tourist/novice hiker. However, it is a very nice trail. Well maintained. Going down is the easy part. Good workout going back up.

Saturday, October 01, 2016

Nice historical and geological wonder

Saturday, September 03, 2016

Took my 5 year old son and 2 year old daughter here and did this hike. Very Cool area you feel as if you went back in time 1000 years and you just have so many questions.

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

I didn't mind this hike, My wife on the other hand would not rate it very high, I would put this on the "hard" end of easy, especially if you do it in some heat, coming up can be rough in the heat, very little shade if any. Definitely enjoyable going down, once in the canyon, it's ok. My wife did not like the Indian sellers you have to walk by to see the ruins, or the fact you are kept a pretty good distance away from them, with an ugly steel fence between you & the ruins (not great for pictures). It is the only way to see the canyon without hiring a guide, so from that perspective, to me it's kinda a must do unless you happy taking pictures from the overlooks looking down

Friday, March 25, 2016


Monday, December 21, 2015

I grew up near the Canyon and it brings back memories of my childhood. Its a beautiful place to hike and I recommend doing it before sunset because the colors of the Arizona sky and the walls of canyon are amazing!

Monday, November 30, 2015

Definitely worth it. The signs says it takes two hours but I did it in just over an hour. The views are beautiful and the history is fascinating.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Pretty and fascinating trail. If you are a history buff this trail is a must! However, hats, sunblock and plenty of water is also a must.

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