Chimney Rock Interpretive Association

A nonprofit organization

CRIA is important because it preserves history & culture and without protection and preservation it is lost forever. When you donate to CRIA you are supporting an organization that is devoted to educating, preserving, protecting a culturally significant piece of history in Southwest Colorado.


To Whom It May Concern,

The Chimney Rock Interpretive Association (CRIA) is a 50l.c3 (non-profit) which works with the Forest Service to provide interpretive services at Chimney Rock National Monument. CRIA volunteers put in over 12,000 hours annually in support of the Monument. They undertake a range of activities on and off site, offering guided tours and public information at the site, conducting maintenance activities (doing everything from cleaning restrooms to maintaining trails and treating weeds), and providing off-site public information through their website and press releases. The extraordinary contributions of CRIA are deeply appreciated by the Forest Service; the Chimney Rock Interpretative Association was named the 2012 Forest Service Volunteer Group of the Year.

We understand that CRIA is participating in the Colorado Gives Day fundraising to help raise money for general operating expenses and special projects. This campaign would help meet both of our goals of providing education and interpretation on Chimney Rock National Monument.


Paul L. Blackman

Recreation Program Manager

Chimney Rock Testimonial

The lifeblood of the Chimney Rock Interpretive Association is not only the imposing presence of the historical site, but the volunteers that promote, provide tours and support this National Monument. These people are an example of volunteering excellence. Their knowledge of the site and the history they impart makes the tours and special events more meaningful to all those who visit.

Mary Jo Coulehan
Executive Director
Pagosa Springs Chamber of Commerce


Chimney Rock Interpretive Association

Mission Statement

Chimney Rock Interpretive Association, a non-profit organization, is devoted to providing our community, youth, visitors and volunteers a meaningful connection with the National Monument by creating enjoyable, educational, interpretative programs that connect our modern lives to those of the ancestral Puebloans.

Background Statement

Chimney Rock Interpretive Association (CRIA) has provided the interpretive program at Chimney Rock for more than 25 years. CRIA obtained non-profit 501(c)(3) status in 2004 and has maintained 85+ volunteers who are the backbone of this organization. These amazing volunteers are passionate about this small, remote outlier of Chaco Canyon. They love to tell the roughly 12,000 visitors to the site each season (May 15 through September 30) about the solar and lunar alignments that would have been important to the ancient residents, alignments that most likely were of critical importance to the ancient culture throughout the Four Corners area.

The story is presented through daily guided tours, audio self-guided tours, three monthly lunar and solar programs, and a free ancient arts festivals focusing on the people and the place as it was a thousand years ago. CRIA also performs daily maintenance of the site and visitors cabin. CRIA's volunteers operate under partnership authority agreement with the San Juan National Forest, Pagosa Springs District.

Organization Data


Organization name

Chimney Rock Interpretive Association

other names

CRIA, Chimney Rock chapter, San Juan Mountain Association, Friends of Chimney Rock

Year Established


Tax id (EIN)



Arts, Culture & Humanities

Organization Size

Small Organization


PO BOX 1662
Pagosa Springs, CO 81147

Service areas

Archuleta County, CO, US