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The Best Hiking Trails for RV Campers in Big Bend National Park

Harper Sullivan-profile-image
Harper Sullivan
June 7, 2024

TL;DR Big Bend National Park offers diverse hiking trails for RV campers, from the challenging Emory Peak to the scenic Santa Elena Canyon. Enjoy nearby RV-friendly spots and wildlife attractions. Happy hiking!

The Best Hiking Trails for RV Campers in Big Bend National Park

The Best Hiking Trails for RV Campers in Big Bend National Park

Big Bend National Park, located in southwestern Texas, is a paradise for RV campers and hiking enthusiasts. This vast and rugged park offers a diverse range of hiking trails that showcase the stunning landscapes of the Chihuahuan Desert, the Chisos Mountains, and the Rio Grande River. Whether you’re looking for a challenging hike or a leisurely stroll, Big Bend has something for everyone. Here are some of the best hiking trails for RV campers in Big Bend National Park.

For those planning a visit, it's helpful to know about RV-specific amenities and tips. Check out our comprehensive guide on RV camping in Texas. If you’re exploring more of the Lone Star State, our guide on Overnight RV Camping at Farms, Wineries, and Breweries in Texas. Also, don’t miss our insights on Exploring Legendary Alpacas of Texas. For those new to boondocking, our guide on boondocking essentials will help you get started.

1. Lost Mine Trail

The Lost Mine Trail is a popular hike that offers breathtaking views of the Chisos Mountains and the surrounding desert.

Trail Description: This 4.8-mile round-trip trail begins at the Chisos Basin and climbs steadily to the top (1,100 feet in elevation gain), where hikers are rewarded with panoramic vistas. The trail is moderately difficult and provides a great opportunity to see local wildlife and unique plant species.

2. Santa Elena Canyon Trail

Santa Elena Canyon Trail is a must-visit for its dramatic scenery and the opportunity to hike along the Rio Grande.

Trail Description: This easy 1.7-mile round-trip trail follows the Rio Grande into the stunning Santa Elena Canyon. The trail features beautiful river views and towering canyon walls, making it a favorite for photographers and nature lovers.

3. Window Trail

The Window Trail is one of Big Bend’s most iconic hikes, leading to a scenic pour-off that frames the desert below.

Trail Description: The 5.6-mile round-trip hike starts at the Chisos Basin and descends through Oak Creek Canyon to the Window, a large V-shaped notch in the mountains. The trail is moderate in difficulty and offers plenty of shade and diverse flora.

4. Emory Peak Trail

For those seeking a challenge, the Emory Peak Trail leads to the highest point in Big Bend National Park.

Trail Description: This strenuous 10.5-mile round-trip hike begins at the Chisos Basin and ascends to Emory Peak, which stands at 7,825 feet. The trail offers spectacular views and the chance to experience the park’s high-elevation ecosystems.

5. Hot Springs Historic Trail

Combining history and natural beauty, the Hot Springs Historic Trail is perfect for a short, informative hike.

Trail Description: This easy 0.5-mile round-trip trail takes you to the historic hot springs along the Rio Grande. The trail features petroglyphs, ruins of an old bathhouse, and the opportunity to soak in the hot springs.

Nearby Harvest Hosts Locations

After a day of exploring Big Bend’s magnificent trails, RV campers can relax at one of these nearby Harvest Hosts locations:

Get Lost Tours


Get Lost Tours.jpeg Host Description: Offering personalized tours and experiences in Terlingua, TX, Big Bend, and the surrounding areas, with a focus on enjoyment, fun, and learning.

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Wassermann Wranch


Wasserman Ranch.jpeg Host Description: Wassermann Wranch in scenic Sunny Glen features Red Kangaroos, Carl the Camel, donkeys (including critically endangered breeds), alpacas, and more! Guests can park near the kangaroo enclosure and enjoy coffee with the roos.

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10 Point Turtle Ranch


10 Point Ranch.jpeg Host Description: A wildlife education and conservation facility in Eagle Pass, TX, featuring turtles and tortoises, including two that weigh over 100 pounds. The facility also hosts a variety of farm and domestic animals, as well as natural wildlife.

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Big Bend National Park offers an array of hiking opportunities that cater to all levels of RV campers. From the challenging ascent of Emory Peak to the serene beauty of Santa Elena Canyon, there’s a trail for everyone. Be sure to check trail conditions and availability before you go, and enjoy your adventures in one of Texas's most iconic national parks.

Planning on storing your RV after your Big Bend adventure? Don’t miss our ultimate guide to storing your RV in the off-season to keep it in top shape for your next trip. Happy hiking!

About Harvest Hosts
Harvest Hosts is a unique RV camping membership that offers self-contained RVers unlimited overnight stays at over 5,631 small businesses across North America with no camping fees. Boondock at farms, wineries, breweries, attractions, and other one-of-a-kind destinations throughout North America, and you’ll get peace of mind knowing that a safe place to stay is always nearby!
Harper Sullivan-profile-image
Harper Sullivan
Harper Sullivan is a six-foot-tall adventurous travel writer with an untamed spirit. She lives out of a Ford Transit, chronicling her experiences from the rocky terrains of The Rockies to the rim of the Grand Canyon. Contributing to the Harvest Hosts, CampersCard, CampScanner blog; Harper's writings blend vivid travel experiences with insightful reviews and pop culture references. Her engaging storytelling invites readers on an extraordinary journey, making every camping escapade a thrilling adventure.