Backpack to the Southeast Rim of the Chisos

Big Bend National Park, Texas

Details

Distance

14 miles

Elevation Gain

1600 ft

Route Type

Loop

Description

Added by Eva Bennett

Simple overnight hike in Big Bend with incredible views overlooking the Chisos and into Mexico! Well worth the climb.

This 14 mile loop provides incredible views of the Chisos mountains. This hike can be done in a day, but to really take in the scenery, stay overnight and experience the incredible cliffs overlooking Mexico. You can add on an extra 2 mile by doing the Emory Peak trail which gets you to the top of a narrow peak.

We left the trailhead by the ranger station in the Chisos basin and climbed the Pinnacles Trail to the Boot Canyon Trail. Get an early start so that you have time to add on the Emory Peak there and back hike partway up to the rim. When we got to Emory Peak, there were a ton of lady bugs covering a rock, nothing like we'd ever seen before.

Continuing on the trail, hike upwards towards the NE Rim passing by a trickling creek (or a dry bed, depending on when you go). Travel along the path to the SE Rim. We camped overnight in SE2, which was a great halfway point and was near to incredible dinner spots providing in comparable views with drop off cliffs.

Waking up in the morning to fog through the low trees on the plateau, we continued along the SW Rim trail to the Laguna Meadows trail. This downhill gave us incredible views of the valley with much more greenery.

Be sure to bring tons of water on this trip, and be aware of the danger of mountain lions and bears. Fires are never permitted.

For more information and campground reservations, head to the nps.gov website. 

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