• Activities:

    Hiking

  • Skill Level:

    Advanced

  • Season:

    Spring, Winter

Hot Springs
Lake
River
Scenic

Distance: 10.5 miles roundtrip. Elevation gain: 2,425 ft. Explore a hidden gem of Texas. Amazing views. Natural hot springs. Well-marked, easy access trail. Beautiful drive to the trailhead.

The hike to Emory Peak zig-zags up the face of the mountain, and only when you reach the peak do you get the full, 360 view of Big Bend National Park. Trust me, it's gorgeous.

You get some pretty amazing views before reaching the peak, too, but you are hiking on the inside of the “horseshoe” loop, so you have the full view of the basin.

Start from the carpark, where there is a bathroom and trail maps. The fun begins around ¼ mile to the peak, as the marked trail disappears and you have to navigate up narrow passages, and around trees and boulders. The last 50 feet will require you to navigate up a rock face, though it won't require crampons. After a scramble on all fours getting up to the peak, you will be rewarded with a breathtaking view.

Remember to bring a windbreaker, as it gets cold at the peak. You can also find a small enclave away from the windchill on the face and relax for a bit.

All in all, an incredible national park in an unexpected place.

Pack List

  • 3L water (minimum)
  • Food: 3 protein bars, 1 apple/banana, small ziplock of trail mix, gummy bears
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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Reviews

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The views from this summit are incredible, and the scramble/climb to the top makes it one of the more memorable summits! Also, and if you crave a solid meal after a summit hike like I do, then I highly recommend hitting up Big Bend Pizza in Marathon, TX on your way out of the park. It was a great surprise to find such a great pizza place to celebrate a great trip in the park!

about 1 year ago
about 1 year ago

The switchbacks felt endless. It was always worth it when we made it to the top. As always watch out for rattlesnacks.

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

There's a reason so many people flock south during the cooler months. The locals call them Winter Texans, and you can imagine that a place this popular for its mild winters can be a scorch fest in the summer. That being said, heed Warren's advice and pack enough water. Emory Peak is well worth the trip (and its a helluva long drive to miss out on the spectacular view from the top).

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

One of my favorite spots at Big Bend. Great views and a perfect spot to relax on a beautiful afternoon.

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

This is a must do if in Big Bend. Emory Peak is the highest peak in the Chisos Mountains, the peak is 7,825ft.

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

Are we missing something? Suggest an edit

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