Operating Hours & Seasons
Guadalupe Mountains National Park is open year-round and offers a variety of outdoor activities including backpacking, camping, and hiking. While most trails and both of the park's campgrounds are available for use anytime, park facilities have posted hours, and several park locations are designated as day-use only. The following offers specific information about various park locations and their operating hours:
Pine Springs Visitor Center The Pine Springs Visitor Center is located at Pine Springs and can be accessed via U.S. Highway 62/180 between Carlsbad, New Mexico, and El Paso, Texas. The visitor center is open daily except Christmas Day, hours are 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM Mountain Time.
McKittrick Canyon (Day-use)
A small contact station is located in McKittrick Canyon at the trailhead, and is staffed intermittently. The contact station features handicap accessible restrooms, a shaded seating area, outdoor exhibits, and a slide program on McKittrick Canyon history, geology, and other natural resources.
Dog Canyon has a small ranger station where visitors may obtain backcountry permits or information about the area. The ranger station is staffed intermittently, however a park ranger lives on premises. The phone number at Dog Canyon is: (505) 981-2418.
Williams Ranch (Day-use) Visitors may access the 4X4 road to Williams Ranch by checking out a key at the Pine Springs Visitor Center during normal business hours. Only high ground clearance 4X4 vehicles are allowed. Williams Ranch is designated day-use only; no overnight parking or camping is permitted. Gate keys must be returned to the Pine Springs Visitor Center the same day.
Salt Basin Dunes (Day-use) Recently acquired by the Guadalupe Mountains National Park, the Salt Basin Dunes offer visitors the opportunity to travel to an area of austere beauty and isolation. Visitors may check out a gate key at the Pine Springs Visitor Center during normal business hours. The distance to the dunes is nearly 50 miles one-way; 7.5 miles of which is on an unpaved county road. No overnight parking or camping is allowed. Gate keys must be returned to the Pine Springs Visitor Center, or NPS contact station in Dell City, Texas the same day.
Did You Know?
The fiery, red-orange tips of the Indian Paintbrush are bracts of the plant that conceal the actual flowers. Most if not all paintbrush species are hemiparisitic, and depend on other plants to supply water and nutrients.