***Self-Guided Trip Planning

  • Almost all roads and day-hiking trails are currently open at Big Bend National Park!
  •  Panther Junction Visitor Center and the Chisos Basin Visitor Center reopened in late May. Persimmon Gap and Rio Grande Village reopened in November as usual. Castolon Visitor Center is open in the ranger station (old officers' quarters) with limited services and is expected to move to its new permanent home in the historic Garlick House in late winter or early spring.
  • The high Chisos Mountains trails and most campsites have reopened after the South Rim 4 Wildfire.  Please note that human waste containment systems, such as WagBag or Restop 2 bags, will be required for overnight use and are highly encouraged for day hikers, due to the destruction of some composting toilet outhouses in the fire.
  • Face masks are required in all buildings within the park. Please be prepared and have your mask on before entering visitor centers or camper stores.

HOWEVER, the park is extremely busy. Campgrounds, primitive roadside sites, and the Chisos Mountains Lodge are full most nights. On weekends and holidays you may encounter traffic line-ups at entry points to popular sites, especially at the base of the Chisos Basin road.

Planning ahead is crucial to a safe trip. In addition to one or more of the following guidebooks, we highly recommend consulting the park's main website frequently for important safety updates.

Campgrounds, most primitive roadside sites, and most designated mountain hike-in sites remain available by advance reservation through www.recreation.gov. Permits for desert wilderness backpacking, overnight river trips, and some limited-access drive-in sites can be made in person during business hours at Panther Junction. Please note that you MUST have a permit or reservation in advance to be able to stay over night inside the park. There is NO first-come, first-served camping. If you don't have a reservation and you arrive outside of business hours, you must find a spot outside the park. See the main Big Bend National Park website, www.nps.gov/bibe , for full information on what's open and how to reserve a campsite. Remember also that neighboring Big Bend Ranch State Park often has campsites available when the National Park is full.

Chisos Mountains Trails Map 2020

Chisos Mountains Trails Map 2020

Revised in 2019 and in full color, this handy map includes a new inset map of the Chisos Basin Trailhead and developed area as well as descriptions...
$1.39
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Desert Hiking Tips: Expert Advice on Hiking and Driving

Desert Hiking Tips: Expert Advice on Hiking and Driving

  This pocket-size book might be a life-saver—or at least a time- and embarrassment-saver! Veteran outdoorsman Bruce Grubbs provides the...
$9.95
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Hiker's Guide 2021

Hiker's Guide 2021

Significantly revised, the 2021 edition is filled with full-color photographs and is a large format 8.5" x 11" for readability. The...
$4.95
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2019 Trails Illustrated Map: Big Bend National Park

2019 Trails Illustrated Map: Big Bend National Park

• Waterproof • Tear-Resistant • Topographic Map The largest protected area of the Chihuahuan Desert, Big Bend National Park is a...
$14.95
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Backcountry Road Guide

Backcountry Road Guide

Thoroughly revised mile by mile, this new edition of the Road Guide to Backcountry Roads of Big Bend National Park now includes GPS coordinates as...
$4.95
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River Guide to the Rio Grande: Colorado and Santa Elena Canyons

River Guide to the Rio Grande: Colorado and Santa Elena Canyons

This guide covers from Tapado Canyon to the Santa Elena Canyon takeout and includes Colorado Canyon and Santa Elena Canyon. A newly revised version...
$14.95
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River Guide to the Rio Grande: Mariscal and Boquillas Canyons

River Guide to the Rio Grande: Mariscal and Boquillas Canyons

Newly revised version of the classic guide, with updated text and new full color maps and photos. Includes the “Great Unknown.” 20...
$15.95
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Big Bend Vistas: A Geological Exploration of the Big Bend

Big Bend Vistas: A Geological Exploration of the Big Bend

Big Bend Vistas: A Geological Exploration of the Big Bend by William MacLeod takes you along the highways and park roads in Big Bend National Park...
$24.95
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Death In Big Bend

Death In Big Bend

Real Stories of Death and Rescue in Big Bend National Park by Laurence Parent. BACK IN PRINT!!! This Big Bend bestseller was unavailable for a while,...
$18.95
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Great Walks of Big Bend

Great Walks of Big Bend

Note: The Chisos Mountains walks in this guide are NOT affected by the spring-summer 2021 wildfire closures. All of them remain open as of May 2021....
$8.95
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