Big Bend National Park is not typically considered a climbers' destination, but it offers some scenic, challenging, and wildly varied rock climbs. Over the years, park visitors have often inquired about climbing, but there is little written.
Climbing in the park is unofficially discouraged because there is little written information to disseminate, the quality of rock ranges from fair to terrifying, the weather can be extremely harsh, and the approaches can be long, waterless ordeals. Bolting of any kind, electric or hand, is strictly forbidden. Climbing in Big Bend National Park can be very rewarding, but leaving any trace of impact on this resource, over time, will surely jeopardize access.
The majority of the park's exposed vertical rock is composed of unstable igneous rock (rhyolite) and sharply fluted limestone. River canyon routes, Dog Canyon, and Mesa de Anguila routes are generally composed of limestone. Routes in the Chisos, Grapevine Hills, and Pine Canyon are generally composed of igneous rock. Don't let this discourage you too much; there are relatively solid climbs on igneous rock. As stated by Roger Sigland in his informal guide, "On any climb expect rotten rock and few good cracks for pitons."
Topographic maps and trail guides are available at the Panther Junction Visitor Center.
Admission: Park Permit: $15 per vehicle or $5 per person for motorcyclists, bicyclists, or pedestrians.
Hours: Year Round
Address: Big Bend Country - Extreme SW Texas
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