Guadalupe Mountains NP, Texas - Part 1

October 18; 6,397 miles and 92 days into the trip.
Guadalupe Mountains NP Campground

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This is another little known and little attended National Park. It is only 20 minutes from Carlsbad Caverns and most people learn about Guadalupe while at the Caverns. The National Park combines the two parks in the park newspaper. The Guadalupe Mountains are very tall compared to the surrounding area to the east and west and were used by the wagon trains as a navigation aid. By guiding just south of the Guadalupe Mountains you pass through a notch between them and the Apache Mountains to the south.

The campground is mainly for tents. They converted part of a trail head parking lot into 30 RV sites, only 8 of them for class A size units.

Guadalupe Mountains
We were driving in from the west and saw the outline of
the Guadalupe Mountains from about 50 miles away.

El Capitan
The park entrance is on the east side of the mountain chain.
So we are now driving up from the southeast.

Our campsite.

Hiking on the "Smith Spring Trail" as we pass Manzanita Springs.
After climbing out of the trailhead, which was part way down in the valley,
we noticed this pyramid looking mountain.

Walkingstick Cholla Cactus
This time of year the showy maginta flower on this cactus is gone,
but the remaining yellow dry spiny fruit is mistaken for flowers.

The trail is loaded with small rocks.

The scenery is great.
We are headed up into the canyon on the right.

Back to the Summer/Fall 2006 Travel Directory