Have you ever wanted to travel back in time to see some epic events in history? Or experience pure darkness? Do you ever wish to escape the heat but not want to travel far? If you said yes to any of those questions, I HIGHLY recommend taking a trip to Northern Arizona and driving to this amazing lava cave!

Schyler & Mike always talked about wanting to explore a lava cave but never got the chance to. It wasn’t until I popped the idea in their heads to explore this 3/4 mile long hike (and climb) lava tube! They immediately said yes and we were counting down the days to their adventure into pure darkness.


The entrance of the lava cave is very easy to find. The trail is a straight shot from the forest parking lot and about 50 feet from the structured rocks you can feel the cold breeze rushing out of the cave!

We spent about an hour and a half looking at the amazing rock formations, the coloring of the walls, and of course taking photos DURING THEIR adventure.

Exploring this lava cave really takes your mind away from reality. You forget about all stress in life and the traffic you might have to deal with heading home.

This 650,000 – 700,000 year old lava cave can be as cool as 42°F🌡 in the summer so if you want to escape the heat, especially the triple digits in Phoenix, then I highly recommend this 3/4 mile hike!

This location is truly an Escape and Adventure experience (see what I did there?).


A four wheel drive car is recommended.
There are two ways to travel to this lava cave. There are bumpy roads that can be muddy or covered in snow – depending on the weather. A smaller car (like a Mazda 3 for example) is ok to drive in but because of the rocky dirt roads on the way to the cave, a higher sitting SUV/ truck is preferable.
Bring more than your phone’s flashlight!
Because of how pitch black it gets, no matter what time of day it is, is headlamps are the best way to explore the lava cave. There will be lots of climbing, crab walking due to small openings in the cave, and pure darkness. Your phone will not justice how dark this cave really is. A light with 300+ lumens is recommended!
Wear proper gear!
Hiking shoes with good grip, a jacket, and gloves if your fingers get cold easily. A hard hat or helmet is also recommended because it is very dark and there are sudden small areas in front of you that you can bang your head against.
Pets are not allowed.
On the informational sign outside of the cave it does say that pets are not allowed inside. If you think about bringing a furry friend to hike with you, this location is not recommended for you. But thankfully there are lots of hiking spots you can adventure with your fur baby nearby. Aspen’s Corner is one of my favorite simple hikes to explore during the summers.
Bring lots of water and snacks!
The air gets very cold and dry in the tube the deeper you explore, so remember to stay hydrated! Also, please remember to snack before and after this adventure. There is no reception underground so if your blood sugar drops you are not going to be able to call an ambulance for help.
You should not travel alone.
I do love exploring by myself but if it is an environment you’ve never been to before I highly recommend adventuring with a friend. The cave is very moist and slippery and if you are not going at your own pace or not watching your step you can get hurt.


This cave is visited by thousands of people a year. The better we take care of the places we visit, the longer they’ll stay beautiful. I’ve been to this cave many times throughout the years and every time I visit I see something new from other hikers and nature itself.

Please remember to pick up any trash, no smoking, and no graffiti!
If an adventure session sounds like an awesome date idea, reach out! I’d love to plan an epic adventure with you and capture some stunning photos like these.


Hey, I’m Kelcee!

As an Arizona born and raised local I know everything from the secret hidden engagement photo locations that aren’t overpopulated with tourists to the best time to take photos!

I’m here to help you with all things adventure. From scouting out your portrait location to planning your adventurous timeline, I’ll help you plan your best day ever, take away any stress you are experiencing, and support you as your new best friend.

Your engagement is the experience of a lifetime and you deserve not only the support for doing what you love but also the best quality photos that tell your love story that will last a lifetime.


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  1. This is so cool + what a unique places to take photos! The tips you have are so helpful for having the most fun + safe experience here! I definitely will be visiting next time I’m in Arizona!

  2. Aimee Flynn says:

    Oh wow this looks soooo fun! What a fun place to adventure and take photos!

  3. I have never seen a photo session in a cave! how incredible!!! 😮

  4. Jessica Kovach says:

    What a unique place for a shoot! I’m so glad you mentioned a reminder of Leave No Trace because. It’s so important to keep amazing places clean and accessible to all <3

  5. I never would have thought to do a session in a lava cave! Honestly I had no idea you could just hike into them like this either. What a unique adventure 🙂

  6. Sierra Jessup says:

    What a unique spot for photos! This would be such a fun adventure for a photoshoot!

  7. Ann Marie says:

    What a fun spot! Definitely a unique idea for a fun session and looks like these two had a lot of fun! 🙂 Love it!

  8. Lava adventures ate just so so exciting! Memories captured forever! So so stunning!

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