Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Big Bend National Park - Part 1: South Rim

We're back! We took a great 4 day jaunt down to Big Bend this past weekend and will share photos of our adventure over the next week or two.

Our first hike of this trip took us 13 miles round trip from the Basin in Big Bend to the South Rim (via Laguna Meadow) overlooking the Rio Grande river valley and on into Mexico. We started early in the day and walked in shade much of the way up; check out the snow on these cool lichens.

If hiking or any type of physical exercise is a common venture this hike is no problem. The elevation gain is moderated over nicely constructed switchbacks. We covered 6 miles to the South Rim much before we thought we would (due to the description in the guide book). The views of the valley and into Mexico are spectacular!

We found a rock jutting out of the cliff face and sat there for lunch taking all this in...

Steve always gets a bit excited in these places!

Jennifer's pretty happy too.

The drop down to the valley is abrupt and bottoms out in the Rio Grande, about 1 vertical mile below this picture. (The hike starts much higher than the valley floor and only amounts to about 2000' elevation gain.)

Lichens populate most rock crevices on the South Rim.

Snow covered Mexico mountain peaks frame the distant landscape, not readily visible in this picture, and captured Jennifer's interest.

Taking the Boot Canyon trail back down to the Basin led us near seasonal pools of water creating a lush environment of bigtooth maple trees, Arizona cypress and a few ponderosa pine and Douglas firs.

To the right of Steve is an Arizona cypress. The scale is off in the picture because the tree actually resides in the canyon behind Steve but it is a large tree. We were impressed.

A little scuffling sounded just off the trail. Jennifer: "I heard something!" Steve: "Me too!" Shh. Why, who's over there? Awww - a little skunk digging ever so diligently in the vegetation! What for? We aren't sure, but guess some tasty morsels. The little critter gave no thought to us, hence the tail picture.

Warming up in the brilliant sunshine, lower elevation and low winds.

More to follow!


  1. haha. the place is so beautiful even the skunks are in to good a mood to worry about spraying!

  2. Once again, looks to be an amazing hike!!!! I'm so glad you two were able to venture there.

  3. wow! looks really awesome. how cold was it? -acb

  4. incredible sights! thanks for sharing your adventures with the rest of us. b


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