Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas

Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas

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McKittrick Canyon

Historic McKittrick Canyon has a number of structures to explore and pleasant hiking trails ideal for families. The McKittrick Nature Trail has signage that describes local plants, recent wildfires, and the ancient geology of the area. The short trail also has a picnic area.

Address: Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas

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URL: http://www.nps.gov/gumo/planyourvisit/mckittrick.htm
Hours: Mon-Sun 8 am - 4:30 pm
Price: Free

Guadalupe Peak

At 8,751 feet, Guadalupe Peak is the tallest mountain in Texas and the centerpiece of Guadalupe Mountains National Park. Although the eight-mile, roundtrip hike to the summit may be too long and steep for many families, it's worth walking a portion of the scenic trail.

Address: Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas

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URL: http://www.nps.gov/gumo/planyourvisit/trails.htm
Hours: Year-round
Price: Free

El Capitan

While not the highest peak in Texas, El Capitan is probably the most impressive. At over 4,000 feet, its vertical walls form a dramatic backdrop to visitors driving through Guadalupe Mountains National Park. There are no summit trails although there's a moderate three-mile hike through the Chihuahuan desert punctuated with rock formations, wildflowers and views of wildlife.

Address: Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas

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URL: http://www.nps.gov/gumo/naturescience/geologicformations.htm
Hours: Year-round
Price: Free

Smith Spring

Scenic Smith Spring is a pleasant, shady oasis in Guadalupe Mountains National Park, and is the focus of a popular day hike from the Frijole Ranch trailhead. At just 2.3 miles roundtrip, the trail is moderate enough for most families to handle easily. The spring draws wildlife and birds to the area, and a small waterfall offers a delightful soundtrack to a rest stop at the spring.

Address: Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas

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Phone:
URL: http://www.nature.nps.gov/geology/parks/gumo/
Hours: Year-round
Price: Free

Williams Ranch

Although Williams Ranch is situated in a remote area of the park, it's worth the drive through canyons and deserts where wildlife viewing is plentiful. Kids will get a kick out of seeing the Butterfield Stage crossings as well as spotting numerous lizards, roadrunners, jack rabbits and coyotes. At the ranch site, families can walk partway along the El Capitan trail. Touring the area requires getting a gate key from the visitors center.

Address: Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas

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URL: http://www.nps.gov/gumo/planyourvisit/4x4.htm
Hours: Mon-Sun 8 am - 4:30 pm
Price: Free

Dog Canyon

Far removed from civilization, Dog Canyon stands at the edge of the wilderness boundary and offers a peaceful spot for camping, birding and hiking. While pleasant enough as a day trip, Dog Canyon is most suitable for camping. Nearby nature trails are fun to explore.

Address: Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas

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Phone:
URL: http://www.nps.gov/gumo/planyourvisit/dogcanyon.htm
Hours: Year-round
Price: Free

Frijole Ranch

With its historic buildings and small pioneer museum, Frijole Ranch is an interesting place for families to visit. Lush, green grounds stand in stark contrast to desert surroundings. An easy, paved path leads to a nearby spring, and the Frijole and Foothills trails connect with the Pine Springs campground.

Address: Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas

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URL: http://www.nps.gov/gumo/historyculture/frijolehistory.htm
Hours: Year-round
Price: Free

Stone Cabin

One of the park's most popular hikes leads to Stone Cabin -- aka Pratt Cabin -- a structure (including the roof) made from locally quarried limestone. Families can drive there or follow the McKittrick Canyon Trail, known for its colorful foliage.

Address: Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas

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Phone:
URL: http://www.nps.gov/gumo/historyculture/prattcabin.htm
Hours: Mon-Sun 8 am - 4:30 pm
Price: Free

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