Plan Your Visit
As a hiker's paradise, you will find more than 80 miles of trails that meander through woodland canyons and lush riparian springs, or zigzag up steep switchbacks directly into the park's rugged wilderness. Many trails are available for horseback riding if you bring your own stock. The park is a wonderful place to look at fossils and learn about Permian Age geology, enjoy bird watching and wildlife observation, delve into nature photography, or enjoy unlimited opportunities for stargazing under pristine night skies.
The Pine Springs Visitor Center is the best place to begin your visit to Guadalupe Mountains National Park. Here you can pick up maps and brochures, view an informative orientation slide show, enjoy remarkable interpretive exhibits, browse the bookstore for additional education sources, get a current weather forecast, and talk directly with knowledgeable staff at the information desk about your itinerary. Just outside the door is the Pinery Trail - a short, paved path that has scenic vistas, offers an introduction to the native plants, and leads to the historic ruins of the Butterfield Overland Mail stage station. If your kids are tired of traveling and itching for something to do, our Junior Ranger program is fun, educational, and generally takes less than an hour to complete!
Did You Know?
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.