• Sierra del Carmen

    Big Bend

    National Park Texas

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  • Extreme Water Shortage

    Extreme water shortage throughout park. Visitors are limited to 5 gallons per day, and are encouraged to conserve further when possible. Please consider bringing your own water to the park.

Primitive Roadside Campsites

Terlingua Abajo Campsite Sign
Terlingua Abajo Campsite Sign
NPS Photo/Big Bend National Park

For those who wish to camp in the backcountry without having to backpack, Big Bend offers a number of primitive campsites along backcountry roads. These sites are located in the desert and along the Rio Grande. While some sites are accessible to most vehicles, a high clearance and/or 4-wheel drive vehicle is necessary to reach others. A backcountry use permit is required to camp at any of these sites.

Primitive sites offer excellent views, solitude, and a flat gravel space to set up camp next to your vehicle. No shade, toilets, or other amenities are provided.

Primitive Roadside Campsites— Improved Dirt Roads
Primitive roadside campsites along improved dirt roads are usually accessible to all vehicles except after rain when road conditions may deteriorate and require the use of high clearance or even 4-wheel drive vehicles to access campsites.


Primitive Roadside Campsites— Primitive Dirt Roads
Primitive dirt roads are maintained for high clearance vehicles only, and may require 4-wheel drive. They may be rocky with areas of soft sand that are unsafe for sedans or RVs. Rain can make roads difficult to drive or impassable.

Did You Know?

A few miles into Green Gulch, to the left of the road and high on the slopes of Lost Mine Peak, is a small cave that looks like a little house and is called the Watchman's House. According to legend, this cave is occupied by the ghost of the Indian slave who guarded the mine in the Chisos Mountains. More...