Guadalupe Mountains National Park
Situated in far West Texas, Guadalupe Mountains National Park is a hiker’s paradise. The 85 miles of trails vary greatly in length and difficulty and offer a wide range of opportunities for exploring. Trails leading to the high country are steep and rough; the ascent may be as much as 3,000 feet. Desert and canyon trails are less strenuous. The most famous trails are McKittrick Canyon and Guadalupe Peak. The McKittrick Canyon Trail follows an intermittent stream through desert, transition and canyon woodlands vegetation to the historic Pratt Lodge, Grotto Picnic Area and Hunter Line Cabin. In autumn, the bright red foliage is a stark contrast to the white limestone streambed. The strenuous Guadalupe Peak Trail is an 8.4 mile round trip to the top of Texas. Topping out at 8,749 feet (2,667 meters) above sea level, it’s the highest point in the state. On clear days the 360-degree views include other tall peaks, salt flats and long horizons.
The park is located on U.S. Highway 62/180 110 miles east of El Paso and 55 miles southwest of Carlsbad, New Mexico. Campgrounds are available at the Pine Springs and Dog Canyon areas and backcountry campsites are scattered throughout the park. The nearest food, lodging and gasoline services are 35 miles northeast on U.S. Highway 62/180 in White’s City, NM.
The headquarters’ visitor center at Pine Springs, open daily except December 25, has restrooms, drinking water, brochures, books, trail guides, maps, exhibits, a slide program, and activities schedules. Information, restrooms and drinking water are also available at McKittrick Canyon and Dog Canyon.
Activities available: Hiking, birding, camping, picnicking
Fee: $5.00 per person for adults 16 years of age and older. This fee is good for 7 days