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“Best Hike in Big Bend” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Santa Elena Canyon

Santa Elena Canyon
Big Bend National Park, TX
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Type: Canyons, Outdoors
Activities: White-water rafting, Hiking
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Attraction details
Owner description: Borders the western edge of Big Bend National Park.
Woodstock, Illinois
Top Contributor
92 reviews 92 reviews
32 attraction reviews
Reviews in 40 cities Reviews in 40 cities
69 helpful votes 69 helpful votes
“Best Hike in Big Bend”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 30, 2014

This is a short hike (1.6 miles RT) and only ascends and descends about 100 feet and it is highly recommended. When you reach the high point of the trail there is a great view looking East into the park and when you descend down the other side back to the Rio Grande, there is a great view into the canyon.

Visited January 2014
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136 reviews from our community

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Phoenix, Arizona
Top Contributor
214 reviews 214 reviews
67 attraction reviews
Reviews in 91 cities Reviews in 91 cities
171 helpful votes 171 helpful votes
“Too muddy to wade through, too shallow to canoe through”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 21, 2014

This review is really about the Santa Elena Canyon "trail", as we were unable to travel through the canyon. The trail was easy to navigate but once we got down to the river we really wanted to continue on. We carried old shoes to wade through the river to get around canyon walls that rose from the river. Unfortunately, when we tested the river depth, we found the bottom covered with a minimum of 6 to 12 inches of very sticky mud. We had already been discouraged by an outfitter from canoeing the river because we would spend more time dragging the canoe than paddling. In the end we had to stick with the marked trail. Never the less, the hike was pretty, the canyon was impressive and we found another reason to appreciate this park.

Visited May 2013
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Eagle River, Alaska
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“WOW”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2014

Santa Elena is one of those places that makes you wonder about the power of mother nature. There are javilinia in the area but it doesn't seem to be an issue for hikers.

Visited January 2014
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Charlotte, North Carolina
Top Contributor
139 reviews 139 reviews
53 attraction reviews
Reviews in 71 cities Reviews in 71 cities
83 helpful votes 83 helpful votes
“At the edge of the country”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2014

A nice area to picnic, check out the river, take in the mountain views. Nice sandy walk along the river.

Visited January 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
120 reviews 120 reviews
44 attraction reviews
Reviews in 61 cities Reviews in 61 cities
81 helpful votes 81 helpful votes
“Best Hike in the Park”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2014

This was our favorite hike in the park. Relaxing on the giant boulders in the river in the shade of the shear canyons walls is well worth the short hike.

Visited May 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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