Pets allowed
Not Allowed
Elevation Gain
1,000.00 ft (304.80 m)
Trail type
Loop
Distance
5.60 mi (9.01 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

This 5.6-mile out-and-back takes one to the heart of the Windows in Big Bend National Park. From the visitor center in Chisos Basin (or the campground there), the Windows is one of the best places to watch sunset in the park. The trail will allow hikers to get an intimate view of a window in the rim where the water runs out of the basin and over the South Rim.  

There are multiple trailheads but the most common one is at the Chisos Basin Visitor Center. From there the trail quickly descends toward the rim, and the view of the Chisos Basin is wonderful. The second trailhead is at the Chisos Basin Group Campground and will cut distance off of the total mileage.  

The trail is downhill on the way out, and there is plenty of flora and fauna to observe. It is common to see mule deer, and on occasion a black bear. The visitor center tracks bear sightings, and rumblings throughout the park will indicate where bears have been spotted.  There is also plenty of desert plant life to observe. 

Hikers can descend the last 100 feet to look out over the rim though a window in the towering rocks. Be careful in the last decent as the rock is very slippery, even when dry. But the view is amazing. The way back to the trailhead is mostly uphill. This trail is a great way to get a personal view of one of the parks most popular vistas.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter

Congestion

Moderate

Parking Pass

National Park Pass

Pros

Great views. Birdwatching. Interesting flora.

Cons

Bear county.

Trailhead Elevation

5,300.00 ft (1,615.44 m)

Net Elevation Gain

1,000.00 ft (304.80 m)

Features

Bird watching
Wildlife
Big vistas

Typically multi-day

No

Location

Field Guide

Nearby Lodging + Camping

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