Window View Trail

Big Bend National Park, Texas 79834

Distance0.3mi
Elevation Gain0ft
Trailhead Elevation5,377ft
Top5,377ft
Elevation Min/Max5366/5377ft
Elevation Start/End5377/5366ft

Window View Trail

Window View Trail is a hiking trail in Brewster County, Texas. It is within Big Bend National Park. It is 0.3 miles long and begins at 5,377 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 0.1 miles with a total elevation gain of 0 feet.

Window View Trail Professional Reviews and Guides

"The Window Trail leads to the Window, a large rock canyon cutting through the Chisos Mountains rim that allows drainage from the Basin. It frames panoramic desert vistas and enhances spectacular scarlet sunsets. The hike offers good wildlife viewing opportunities and an introduction to the geology and plant life of the Chisos Mountains, along with great mountain scenery.

Near the end of the Window Trail, a side trail that goes to Oak Spring leads 0.25 mile to a high perch offering outstanding views of the desert far below. The hike is pleasant most of the year. Summers can be fairly hot, so the hike is usually most comfortable in early morning or late afternoon at that time of year. As with other Big Bend hikes, take water, a hat, and sunscreen."

"I hiked this trail for the first time as a child, and the second a decade later in the mid-1970s, wearing an Arabic ghutra made of madras cloth and a leather headband. Homeland Security would no doubt have a problem with me should I wear one on the same trail today.

However, nothing beats the traditional headdress for staying cool on hot desert hikes. I still fashion one from a large bandanna anchored beneath a wide-brimmed hat whenever I hike the desert today. Hiking the Window Trail is the classic Big Bend National Park experience—a must-do hike, with its fantastic view through the Basin’s infamous Window."

"This easy, paved walk winds through a mountain grassland to a spectacular view of the Window. The pinyon pine, juniper, and oak passed along the way once extended across the desert and down to the Rio Grande.

Climatic changes during the last 15,000 years caused the area to become warmer and drier, leaving forests only at higher elevations, where they can still survive because of additional moisture and cooler temperatures found there."

"I included this hike because it’s a wonderful opportunity for hikers to share the joys of Big Bend’s Chihuahuan Desert with loved ones who are unable to tackle anything but the most accommodating trails.

The Window View Trail is special because it sacrifices neither views, nor the opportunity to see wildlife, for a simpler route. This ADA-accessible paved trail takes hikers around a grassland hill to a picture-perfect view of The Window, providing benches along the way."

Window View Trail Reviews

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5/4/2018
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10/3/2016
Nice warm-up hike for your first day at Big Bend. The hike is a slow decent to a great view. Waterproof shoes are a great option as some parts of the trail may have puddles or even flowing water.
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8/5/2012
Pretty Nice view and easy hike. Took no more than 4 hours. Just make sure you bring planty of water in the summer because it was very hot and no potable water was along the way.
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3/11/2011
wide trail with very little elevation change. go in the morning, little or no shade. view is nice but I would choose other hikes first.
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1/9/2009
Hike leads down through the chisos mountains basin to a slippery creek bed. The view out the window is worth the hike. If you take the trail head that starts from the campsites its about 1/2 mile shorter each way.
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12/18/2008
The first 1/2 of the trail on the way out is ok. Nothing to special. Make sure to start at the actual trail entrance (not the one at the visitor center--5 spots at the real entrance so get there early) but once you get to the Window it is pretty cool. Don't get too close to the edge though..
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1/15/2007
An essential for all Big Bend hikers, and within the capabilities of nearly all, despite the uphill return. It is a beautiful desert walk flanked by moutainous walls, down the incresingly close walled canyon. The water fall filled ending and the dramatic exit of the basin's water through the window is simply fantastic.
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11/30/2006
Easy, short paved trail to an outstanding view. I never miss the opportunity to take sunrise and sunset pictures from the Window View.
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11/9/2001
This trail is a great place to do some bird watching. One of the best day hikes in the park. The hike in is downhill and can give you the feeling that the trail is easy. However, the hike out is uphill and can be very strenuous. I suggest you start the hike at the campground rather than the lodge because the extra mile uphill to the lodge can be difficult. On more than one occasion I have given people rides from the campground to the lodge because they just could not make it any farther without help. May people do not take water on this hike, but about a mile in they wish they had some. The whole family can make this hike, although you may end up caring young children out.
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6/16/2001
This trail is more strenuous than the Window View trail.If you go,be careful when you get to the Window.It's very slippery near the opening and a cliff that you could fall from. It is beautiful though.
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Window View Trail Photos

Trail Information

Big Bend National Park
Nearby City
Big Bend National Park
Parks
Moderate
Skill Level
Big Bend National Park
Local Contacts
USGS The Basin
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Oct 2018