Franklin Mountains State Park and Fred Hervey Water Reclamation Ponds

El Paso, Texas

3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars
1 Review
3 out of 5
The Franklin Mountains form a rugged backdrop to the city of El Paso and extend north-south for 23 miles, 8 miles within New Mexico. North Franklin Peak reaches an elevation of 7,192 feet. The state park of 24,000 acres is the largest urban (totally located within a city) park in the nation. Dominated by Chihuahuan Desert vegetation, the park contains an extensive trail system (14 miles). The park’s trails can also be accessed through McKellgon Canyon, a city/county facility in the southern portion of the state park. The Wilderness Park Museum, located just west of US 54, contains a number of exhibits on the area’s natural and historical resources, as well as a nature trail. Key birds: “Mexican Duck” (Mallard); Golden Eagle; Harris’s Hawk; Scaled and Gambel’s Quails; Greater Roadrunner; Chihuahuan Raven; Verdin; Cactus, Rock, and Canyon Wrens; Curve-billed and Crissal Thrashers; Pyrrhuloxia; Rufous-crowned, Black-chinned, and Black-throated Sparrows; Canyon Towhee; and Lesser Goldfinch are present year-round. Swainson’s Hawk, Lesser Nighthawk, Common Poorwill, Black-chinned Hummingbird, Violet-green Swallow, Indigo Bunting, and Scott’s Oriole occur in summer. Western and Mountain Bluebirds, Townsend’s Solitaire, Green-tailed Towhee, Brewer’s Sparrow, and Lark Bunting can usually be found in winter.

Franklin Mountains State Park and Fred Hervey Water Reclamation Ponds Professional Review and Guide

"The Franklin Mountains form a rugged backdrop to the city of El Paso and extend north-south for 23 miles, 8 miles within New Mexico. North Franklin Peak reaches an elevation of 7,192 feet. The state park of 24,000 acres is the largest urban (totally located within a city) park in the nation. Dominated by Chihuahuan Desert vegetation, the park contains an extensive trail system (14 miles). The park’s trails can also be accessed through McKellgon Canyon, a city/county facility in the southern portion of the state park. The Wilderness Park Museum, located just west of US 54, contains a number of exhibits on the area’s natural and historical resources, as well as a nature trail.

Key birds: “Mexican Duck” (Mallard); Golden Eagle; Harris’s Hawk; Scaled and Gambel’s Quails; Greater Roadrunner; Chihuahuan Raven; Verdin; Cactus, Rock, and Canyon Wrens; Curve-billed and Crissal Thrashers; Pyrrhuloxia; Rufous-crowned, Black-chinned, and Black-throated Sparrows; Canyon Towhee; and Lesser Goldfinch are present year-round. Swainson’s Hawk, Lesser Nighthawk, Common Poorwill, Black-chinned Hummingbird, Violet-green Swallow, Indigo Bunting, and Scott’s Oriole occur in summer. Western and Mountain Bluebirds, Townsend’s Solitaire, Green-tailed Towhee, Brewer’s Sparrow, and Lark Bunting can usually be found in winter."

Activity Type: Birding
Nearby City: El Paso
Trail Type: Several options
Best Times: Best April and May for spring migrants and nesting activities; August and September for fall migrants
Local Contacts: Franklin Mountains State Park
Local Maps: Texas Atlas & Gazetteer, DeLorme
Driving Directions: Directions to Franklin Mountains State Park and Fred Hervey Water Reclamation Ponds

Recent Trail Reviews

5/1/2008
0

The water treatment place was awesome but tricky to find. Its a dirt road behind a water treatment place that was a little intimidating. Saw tons of birds though! The Franklin mountain park does have a good bird blind that wasn't even mentioned in the guide. The guide also doesn't mention that its $4 per adult to get into the area. Plus its only open from 8 am to 5pm. More like a picnic area unless you go down the trails.



Trail Photos

Activity Feed

May 2018