Rio Grande Trail

Seminole Canyon State Park and Historic Site, Texas

Elevation Gain126ft
Trailhead Elevation1,268ft
Elevation Min/Max1265/1372ft
Elevation Start/End1268/1268ft

Rio Grande Trail

Rio Grande Trail is a hiking trail in Val Verde County, Texas. It is within Seminole Canyon State Park and Historic Site. It is 2.3 miles long and begins at 1,268 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 4.6 miles with a total elevation gain of 126 feet. Along the trail there are shelters. This trail connects with the following: Canyon Rim Trail and Middle Fork Trail.

Rio Grande Trail Professional Reviews and Guides

"The canyon views and the tremendous history of this spot (well told through park exhibits and guided tours of pictograph sites) are better reasons to visit Seminole Canyon State Park than mountain biking is, but since you’re here, you might as well ride. The Rio Grande River Trail is a pleasant enough stroll across a rugged West Texas landscape from the park road to the point where Seminole Canyon opens up into the Rio Grande at the Amistad Reservoir.

Though the ride here is not as spectacular as in some of the other state parks, the simple crossing of this land takes on an entirely new significance after browsing the historical exhibit at the park’s interpretive center and taking a tour through the pictograph sites. The history of this canyon is conveyed in great detail in the exhibit—from the time the first homo sapiens wandered in 12,000 years ago through the passing of various hunter-gatherer tribes to expeditions by Spaniards and the U.S. Army to its acquisition by the parks department. It’s an amazing story and will make your ride that much more enjoyable. Tread: Mostly doubletrack."

"Despite its tiny size, only 2173 acres, Seminole Canyon is a choice park. It packs a lot of wallop into a small package including pictographs, rock shelters, deep limestone canyons, Chinese railroad camp ephemera from the 1800s, a superb interpretive center, and a convenient camping stopover on a hiker’s way to points farther west.

Whenever someone inquires about the best time to visit Seminole Canyon, I usually answer “after it rains.” The region is hot and dry despite the close proximity to the Rio Grande River, a shiny dung-colored ribbon in constant motion as if some invisible ladle were stirring blood into mercury. Bring plenty of water, even in winter months, to be sure that you make it to the final shade shelter with its view overlooking the river."

Rio Grande Trail Reviews

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As far as parks go, this one is great. The park ranger I met there was absolutely top notch. The park is well maintained and staffed by courteous, knowledgeable people. As far as mountain biking go, its just fair. The scenery is stunning, but the ride is basically flat double track gravel roads. Nice place to explore and enjoy the scenery, but not really a mountain bike trail for anyone looking for more than a basic stroll. Overall though, worth checking out.

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Trail Information

Seminole Canyon State Park and Historic Site
Nearby City
Seminole Canyon State Park and Historic Site
Skill Level
Seminole Canyon State Park and Historic Site
Local Contacts
USGS Seminole Canyon
Local Maps

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Nov 2018