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

    Guadalupe Mountains

    National Park Texas

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  • Trail closures from flood damage.

    Three trails remain closed: Bear Canyon Trail, El Capitan Trail from the Pine Springs trailhead, and the Salt Basin Overlook Loop section that begins at Guadalupe Canyon. Williams Ranch Rd is also closed. For more information please call 915-828-3251

Guadalupe Wind

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Windy days are frequent during the winter and spring months in Guadalupe Mountains National Park.

Photo - Courtesy of Dustin Nelson

Is it always this windy?

The winds at Guadalupe Mountains National Park are legendary. Winter and spring tend to be the windiest seasons with sustained winds in the 30+ miles per hour range and gusts exceeding 70 miles per hour. As spring approaches, windy days become increasingly more frequent. Summer and early fall offer respite from the wind with speeds often being only 5-15 miles per hour.

Wind as a weather phenomenon is due to differences in air pressure. Areas of high pressure cause winds that blow toward areas of low pressure. Wind direction is altered by large scale factors such as the earth’s rotation and small scale factors such as local topography. The Headquarters Visitor Center at Pine Springs is situated at the top of Guadalupe Pass, which acts as a funnel with the prevailing west and southwest winds. Most storm systems (low pressure areas) tracking through the Southwest, do so in the northern portions of Arizona and New Mexico. As the systems move through the region, winds increase in the park. Strong winds in winter can be associated with cold fronts moving down the Great Plains and the eastern face of the Rockies.

Did You Know?

Butterflyweed attracts many species of butterflies with its bright orange flowers and sugary nectar.

Butterflyweed (Asclepias tuberosa), was a significant medicinal source for physicians in the late 19th century who used it extensively as an expectorant and to treat smallpox. It bright-orange blossoms produce an irresistible nectar for butterflies, and thus its common name.