Big Canyon

Carlsbad, New Mexico 88220

Big Canyon

Big Canyon Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"A day hike onto a promontory overlooking the fork between the three main branches of Big Canyon.

This trail ends on a point overlooking one of the deepest and most rugged canyons in the Guadalupe Mountains. The canyon cuts through 1,800 feet of rock at the mouth, including the Capitan Reef. The limestone reef, the largest in the world, contains many caves, including the famous Carlsbad Cavern. The trail follows a wooded ridge with only slight ups and downs along the way. Be sure to be careful with campfires and cigarettes. several big fires in recent years have burned large areas here and in adjoining Guadalupe Mountains National Park."

Big Canyon Reviews

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I have actually done this trail twice. It is very rewarding when you get to the end. The grassy meadow before the view is a wonderful place to rest. Be sure to make your stops along the way for other wonderful canyon views.
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AWESOME...the scenic vistas at the top of the gravel road are amazing. The trail is great and when you get to the end, the view of the canyon is breathtaking. Some tips... Follow the directions closely, its easy to get off know your at the start of the trail when you reach a large dirt parking area with an oil derrik beside it. I recommend a 4X4 vehicle, the last part of the road is very rocky. On the trail, when you get to the top of the mountain, keep going down to the left of the summit about 100 yards. That is the best view of the canyon. The air is very thin, you may get out of breath. Take a backpack with water and snacks....there is no where for 30 miles. I recommend it 100%...the views are the best Ive seen so far in NM.

Big Canyon Photos

Trail Information

Nearby City
Trail Type
Skill Level
2 hours
All year
Additional Use
Lincoln National Forest, 5203 Buena Vista Dr., Carlsbad, NM 88220; (575) 885-4181
Local Contacts
Lincoln National Forest/Guadalupe District; Trails Illustrated: Guadalupe Mountains National Park; El Paso Gap 7.5-minute USGS quad
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Dec 2018