Saturday, December 10, 2016

Guadalupe Mountains National Park

  The Guadalupe Mountains are part of an ancient sea reef that was pushed up by tectonic compression 80 million years ago. Three major ecosystems are contained within the mountain range and  plants and animals that flourish in the highest elevations are not found in other areas of Texas. Pine Springs, the main entrance to the park, has a visitor center with displays about the plants and animals found in the park, a picnic area, campground and trailhead. Each area of the park has a separate entrance with a dead end spur road. Trails connect everything but if you can’t hike long distances seeing all of the park will involve a bit of driving.

  Most of the park is wilderness and only accessible by hiking but there are two short, paved trails. The Pinery Trail which starts at the Pine Springs Visitor Center leads to the ruins of a mid-1800s Butterfield stagecoach station. It’s slightly downhill so be prepared for a workout on the trip back. The visitor center is accessible. We did not visit the other areas of the park so check the website for more accessible features.

  The visitor center has long bus/RV spaces. The campground is just a parking lot with wide spaces, a few picnic tables and restrooms. The tent section is a little better with shared parking areas and trails to the sites.

Park   31.89314, -104.8225



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