The Big Bend National Park has 800,000 acres of wilderness where one can explore to one's hearts content. However, it is desert and can be very hot in summer, so precautions need to be taken.
The park has rivers, mountains and deserts and is called three parks in one. There is a vast back country where primitive camping is allowed by permit.
The National Park Service operates boat tours of the Rio Grande. There are many activities in the evenings put on by park personnel. You may also hire your own personal park ranger guide for tours. There are many trails, ranging from very easy to ones for advanced hikers. Maps are available at the many park stores around the park.
The National Park Service operates three campgrounds, and has a lodge. Back country camping at primitive sites is allowed on a permit basis.
Rio Grande Village
Rio Grande Village is the only campground that has full hookups for RV camping with 25 sites with 30-amp connections. The site is near the east entrance to the national park and close to park headquarters.
Next to this site is another campground that has 100 spaces with no hookups. Generators may be used in some areas, but there are limits on hours. There are two group camping areas at this site.
Big Bend National Park campgrounds
PO Box 129
Big Bend National Park, TX 79834
Phone: (432) 477-2293
For campers who want to rough it, there is the Chisos Basin. The area is in the mountains and rugged. Trailers longer than 20 feet are not recommended.
There are 60 sites with no hookups. There is a water faucet as well as a bathroom with flush toilets. Grills and picnic tables are included at each site.
Reservations may be made for some sites. There are seven group campgrounds that are available only by reservation.
Basin Rural Station,
Big Bend Natl Pk, Texas
Phone: (432) 477-2291
The Cottonwood Campground is on the river. There are no hookups and no generators are allowed. The campground has pit toilets and water is available. There are 31 sites at this campground.
There is one group camping area, but no vehicles are allowed in the area.
The Cottonwood Campground is on the west side of the park and close to the Castolon Historic District, with many scenic drives and trails.
Alpine, Texas 79834
Phone: (877) 444-6777
Article Written By James Jordan
James Jordan has been a writer and photographer since 1980. He has worked for newspapers in Arkansas, Tennessee, South Carolina and Kansas, winning state press association awards for writing, photography and page design. In 1995 he received his master's in Christian education and completed two years of Ancient Greek at the graduate level. Jordan holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism.