Actually, Dog Canyon, despite being remote, may be the prettiest part of Guadalupe Mountains National Park. There is a loop trail there, the Indian Meadows Loop Trail, and several trails into the high country. being about 1,000 feet higher than the southern part of the park, you will see different aspects.
McKittrick Canyon to Pratt Cabin and the Grotto is a pretty hike and will take the better part of a day. You can do Frijole Ranch (especially if the Frijole Ranch Cultural History Museum is open), Smith Springs, Manzanita Spring, the Pinery and Devil's Hall in a day. Williams Ranch is a nice drive, if you have 4WD, and the Salt Basin Dunes on the west side of the park are beautiful, although not as large as White Sands. Make sure to get gate keys for both at the Pine Springs Visitor Center prior to going to either. You will find plenty of photo opportunities in the park.
The park offers a variety of free interpretive programs (guided hikes, patio talks, Butterfield Stage Living History, and evening programs) and has four different free Junior Ranger programs (Junior Ranger, Senior Ranger, Junior Paleontologist and Wilderness Explorer Junior Ranger Programs) that will keep your children occupied while helping them learn more about the park. Make sure to inquire about them at the Pine Springs Visitor Center. If your children are Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts, ask about the Boy Scout Ranger and Girl Scout Ranger programs.
For more information, contact the Pine Springs Visitor Center at tel. (915) 828-3251 x2124 (open daily, except for Christmas, from 8:00 AM until 4:30 PM Mountain Time, from 8:00 AM until 6:00 PM from Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day), visit the park's official website at (www.nps.gov/GUMO/), Facebook Page (www.facebook.com/Guadalupe.Mountains/) or Meetup page (meetup.com/Guadalupe-Mountains-National-Park…), where free interpretive programs, such as guided hikes, evening programs, patio talks and when Frijole Ranch and Historic Pratt Cabin are staffed, are listed. If you are going hiking, join the Peak Fitness Challenge (www.texasmountaintrail.com/hike/), record your mileages and have a chance of winning prizes.