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Located along the Ross Maxwell Drive, mile 13; this flat 4.8 mile desert trail leads hikers to the Chimneys formation. A relatively easy hike to a series of prominent volcanic dike formations in the scenic western end of the park. The "chimneys" have always been animportant landmark and Indian rock art can be found along the base of these high pinnacles. The chimneys are easily seen from the trailhead and can be reached by hiking 2.4 miles. The trail actually continues west for another 4.6 miles to a point near Luna's jacal on the Old Maverick Road. This would be an enjoyable 7 mile hike if you can arrange transportation on the opposite end. From the chimneys you can also head northwest 1.5 miles to the huge cottonwood tree that marks Red Ass Spring. Return the way you came. Please be aware that the trail provides no shade and as such users should dress accordingly.

Please Note: The dry desert air quickly uses up the body's water reserves. We recommend that you carry a minimum of one gallon of water per person per day in the summer, slightly less in the winter. For half-day hikes, carry at least 2 quarts per person.

Springs and tinajas (depressions in rock where water collects) are unreliable and may be unsafe to drink. Springs are rare in the desert and wildlife depend on them. Please carry enough water to supply your own needs

Due to the complex topography and vague trails, detailed 7.5 minute topographic maps and a compass are necessary for most hikes.

On a final note, the weather in Big Bend, hot or cold, injures and kills more hikers than any other factor. Come well prepared because weather changes can be dramatic and unexpected.

Directions: From Ross Maxwell Drive, Drive along to the mile 13 marker

Difficulty: Easy/Moderate

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Big Bend National Park, Texas

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The details, dates, and prices mentioned here were accurate at the time of publication.

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