• The Western Escarpment of the Guadalupes rises above the white gypsum sands of the desert floor.

    Guadalupe Mountains

    National Park Texas

Field Trips

When planning a field trip to Guadalupe Mountains National Park, please notify the park’s Education Outreach Coordinator well in advance of your visit. The park may be able to offer a ranger-led activity or at least meet with your group for a talk.

Begin your visit at the Headquarters Visitor Center at Pine Springs, located on U.S. Highway 62/180, 110 miles east of El Paso, Texas or 56 miles southwest of Carlsbad, New Mexico. The visitor center has interesting exhibits on the park’s natural and cultural history, a 12-minute orientation slide program, a touch screen "electronic ranger", and a variety of hand-outs and brochures. Area information and maps are available here as well. For groups with limited time to spend at the visitor center, there is a "scavenger hunt" activity sheet for students to work through that teaches students about the park's flora, fauna, and geology. If you have more time, you may want your students participate in the Junior Ranger program. Just outside the door is a short .75 mile round trip nature trail that leads to the ruins of the Pinery, a station on the Butterfield Overland Mail stage route.

Entrance Fees and Fee Waivers:
Entrance fees can be waived for educational groups whose proposed visit relates directly to resources found only in the park. A written explanation of what the purpose entails and how it relates to the park resource is required. If the purpose of the visit is recreational, there is a $5.00 per person entrance fee for individuals 16 and over.

For more information, or to schedule a visit, contact:
Martin Christiansen
Education Outreach Coordinator
Guadalupe Mountains National Park
400 Pine Canyon Road
Salt Flat, TX 79847
Phone (915) 828-3251 extension 2311

Find a Field Trip

Results

Showing results 1-5 of 5

  • Guadalupe Mountains National Park

    McKittrick Canyon Nature Trail

    McKittrick Canyon Nature Trail

    The McKittrick Canyon Nature Trail, which begins at the contact station, is a .09 mile loop, with interpretive signs along the way. This short trail offers students a hands-on opportunity to study fossil and read about Permian Age geology or learn about native Chihuahuan desert plants.

  • Guadalupe Mountains National Park

    Permian Reef Geology Trail

    Permian Reef Geology Trail

    Geology groups may want to hike up the Permian Reef Geology Trail. This strenuous, 8.4 mile round-trip hike has 2,000' of elevation gain and generally takes 6-8 hours. The trail has outstanding views of McKittrick Canyon and is an interesting cross section of the Permian Reef.

  • Guadalupe Mountains National Park

    Pratt Cabin Field Trip

    Pratt Cabin Field Trip

    The hike to Pratt Cabin is 4.8 miles round-trip and generally takes 3 to 4 hours. There are picnic tables near and at the cabin, but there are no restrooms in the canyon. Beyond Pratt Cabin, the hike to the Grotto is another mile. There are stone picnic tables at the Grotto.

  • Guadalupe Mountains National Park

    Trip to the Frijole Ranch

    Trip to the Frijole Ranch

    The Frijole Ranch History Museum is located 1½ miles from the Headquarters Visitor Center. Here you will find several displays that focus on the history of the Guadalupe Mountains and the trailhead to the Smith Springs Trail.

  • Guadalupe Mountains National Park

    Williams Ranch Field Trip

    Williams Ranch Field Trip

    Groups interested in geology may want to drive the Williams Ranch Road to view the rugged Western Escarpment.

Did You Know?

Flowers of the desert willow are perfectly formed for the fat, rounded bodies of bees.

The long narrow leaves of the desert willow (Chilopsis linearis) gives it its common name, but it is not a true willow. It is beautiful when in bloom, and provides valuable nectar for hummingbirds, butterflies, bees and other insects.