Chisos Mountains Hiking Trails

man on ledge overlooking mountain range in red jacket

Hiking in Big Bend National Park offers an unparalleled dive into stunning nature at its best. At Far Flung, we are lucky to have so many chances to glimpse views of jagged mountains, deep chasms, and of course, the mighty Rio Grande. The Chisos Mountains offer a particularly unique trekking experience, so we’ve decided to throw together a list of our favorite trails for your benefit. If you don’t see what you are looking for here, check out our customizable and personalized hiking options for more!

 

Chisos Mountain Loop | 16.5 Miles | Difficult

We’ll start with the big mama! The Chisos Mountain Loop Trail isn’t for the faint of heart but those who tackle the challenging loop will be rewarded. This trail features some epic canyon views, including a detour to Emory Peak for more stunning vistas. The landscape moves between rolling hills and varied forests, easy pathways and strenuous climbs, combining a few trails in one walk. Big Bend is perfectly shown off in this trek, whether you choose to tackle it all in a day or over a couple of days, let it take you to new heights!

 

Chisos Basin Loop Trail | 1.8 Miles Loop | Moderate

If you’re unsure of your ability or after a shorter walk, this is the trail for you. It can be done in either direction, although you’ll find counter-clockwise is easier. Pass through Mexican pines and spy a few Mexican jays or hummingbirds. Along the way, you’ll feel dwarfed by the mountains surrounding the basin and don’t be surprised if you spot tracks of the Chisos’ elusive mountain lion or bear footprints. This is a step into untouched nature, as it should be!

 

Boot Canyon Trail | 2.5 Miles | Difficult

Short but steep, the Boot Canyon Trail provides awesome insight into the drastically changing landscape in the park. This is the only place where you might spy the Arizona Cypress so be sure to keep your eyes peeled! Experience the dense and lush vegetation along Boot Canyon and the bare, arid walls of the Chisos Basin. If you can make it in the Fall, try not to fall in love with the technicolor tones of the leaves, as the forest prepares for winter – one of our favorite highlights.

 

South Rim Trail | 14 Miles | Difficult

There’s a reason this trail is a favorite among many. Take in views of the southern part of Big Bend National Park as you climb 2,000 feet along the cliff edge. You’ll feel like you’re soaring with the birds as the local peregrine falcons swoop overhead. As the trail treads extremely close to the falcons’ habitat, it is closed from February until the end of May so that they can nest in peace.

 

Lost Mine Trail | 4.8 Miles Loop | Moderate

If you’re looking for the views but not the full-day of effort, this hike is for you. It provides an ideal introduction to the flora and fauna of the area as well as providing sweeping vistas of Pine Canyon and the Sierra del Carmen in Mexico but don’t worry, you won’t need your passport! This is the perfect trail to take a picnic lunch and let the world pass by for a couple of hours!

 

Window View Trail | 0.3 Miles | Easy

Our final trail is perfect for all ability levels: with a paved path and a gentle climb this a highly accessible trail, it’s even wheelchair friendly. You’ll circle a low hill before reaching an incredible view of the Chisos Basin saddled by mountains on either side. We recommend bringing a snack and timing your walk for the sunset. For those after more of a challenge, this can be extended into another 5-mile trek through Oak Creek Canyon and grasslands.

 

If you’re looking for more expert advice on hiking options around Big Bend then get in contact with us or just send me an email at greg@bigbendfarflung.com. We offer customized hiking tours as well as jeep tours and ATV tours if you need a day to rest your weary legs or even take a day off and get on the water. The ultimate way to see as much of the park as you can with whatever time you’ve got. See you soon!

– Greg