Sunday, April 1, 2018

February 22 - Day 8 in Big Bend National Park - Upper Burro Mesa Pour-off Trail

morning light in Big Bend
A few days ago Cindy and I hiked the Lower Burro Mesa Pour-off Trail. The map also shows an upper trail that begins from a different trail head that almost meets the lower trail, so we figured it came out somewhere above the dead end box canyon. The trail head is about an hour from our camp site, so we got a fairly early start to be sure we got a parking spot. Along the way, I thought the early light looked good on the mountains, so I stopped for a quick shot (above).

We were the first vehicle at the trail head and actually didn't see anyone else on the trail the entire day. Cindy said she had seen that Big Bend was our least visited national park. Even though the campgrounds remained full, the park gets very little day use visitors because it's so far from civilization. Today's trail is a 3.8 mile round trip out and back hike.

view from the trail head
view from the first section of the trail

the trail leads down into a small canyon
The trail began as just a hike though the desert, but got more interesting when we got to the area shown in the 3rd picture above. We were now hiking along a wash through a small canyon. Again, I kept my eyes peeled for any signs of reptile life, but I didn't see a thing. The geology along this section of the trail was really interesting.

Cindy's heading in to look for some snakes

We took our time along this section of the trail just to make sure we didn't miss anything. I'm sure we did, but we saw more that most people would have. Instead of babbling on about it, here are some more pictures.

some type of crystal-like rock

close up of a cactus skeleton along the trail
an unexpected arch along the trail

When we finally made it to what we thought was the end of the trail, we ran into a road block. I was expecting to be at the top of the pour off. Instead we were at the top of a 20-25' drop with no safe way to get down. The rock was just too slick and there weren't any hand or foot holds. We later found out that the pour off was just around the corner from where I'm looking in the next shot.

We were in no real hurry to get back to the truck, so we spent more time shooting and looking on the way back. Here's a little of what we saw.

We got back to the camp site at a decent time, ate dinner, then decided to head up to the nature trail look to see the view from the top. It was a pretty good way to end another great day!

view of the campground - the back is from a controlled burn
view into Mexico

1 comment:

  1. Cactus skeleton & crystals - awesome. And still no reptiles. :(