Madera Canyon Picnic Area

Area Status: Open
This area is Open

Madera Canyon makes a large dent in the northwest face of the Santa Rita Mountains. Its higher elevation grants relief to desert dwellers during the hot months and allows access to snow during the winter. A world-renowned location for bird watching, Madera Canyon is a major resting place for migrating species, while the extensive trail system of the Santa Rita Mountains is easily accessed from the Canyon's campground and picnic areas. Madera Canyon has a long and colorful history. The Friends of Madera Canyon, a cooperating volunteer group, has developed a small booklet that can be requested at the gatehouse. If you are interested in joining the group, please write: Friends of Madera Canyon, PO Box 1203, Green Valley, AZ 85622.

At a Glance

Reservations: no reservations
Area Amenities: Picnic tables,Toilets,Drinking water,Parking
Fees A Coronado Recreation Pass or a National Interagency Recreational Pass must be displayed. Day Pass $5. Week Pass $10. Annual Pass $20. Coronado Rec Passes purchased at any location are good at all other Coronado National Forest fee areas. Passes are available for purchase at many locations. They may always be purchased at the fee area, while numerous private vendors offer the convenience of purchasing a pass prior to visiting the fee area. Passes sold by private vendors are the same price as those sold at Forest Service locations.
Open Season: Year round
Restrictions: This is a developed Recreation Area. Weapons may not be discharged within the boundaries. All pets must be on a leash.
Closest Towns: 25 miles south of Tucson and 11 miles east of Green Valley.
Water: Drinking WWater fountain availableater
Restroom: Barrier-free Toilets
Information Center: Nogales Ranger District (520) 281-2296

General Information


Turn east off of I-19 at the Continental Exit 63. Follow the signs to Whitehouse Canyon Road and on to the Forest boundary, about 11 miles.


This area is accessible to persons with disabilities.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information



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Nature Viewing

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Picnic tables
Drinking water
Areas & Activities


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  Elevation : 
5,000 feet - 5,500 feet