Welcome to our guide on hiking the Lost Mine Trail! We love nature and always make sure to visit unique places and wonders of nature when we are in a specific location. Recently, we were traveling across the United States with our RV and when we got to Texas, we started asking locals for places to visit. A lot of people told us to visit Big Bend National Park.
We didn’t even know Big Bend National Park existed, so we researched and looked at the photos and were blown away by what we saw. We decided that we would drive to Big Bend and spend at least 5-7 days there. We came from Houston, Texas and drove straight to Big Bend National Park.
The drive was incredible and it was totally worth the trip. We completed the Window Trail and Lost Mine Trail, and also visited the Rio Grande and Santa Elena Canyon. During these experiences, we drove a lot! It’s a 800K acre park – so you have to be ready to drive. We loved hiking the Lost Mine Trail and the Santa Elena Canyon – the river in between the canyon was epic!
Our Experience Hiking the Lost Mine Trail
The Lost Mine Trail was easy to moderate in terms of difficulty. It only took us more or less one hour to reach the top (including taking photos along the way). The trailhead is close to the Chisos Basin Campground. There are limited parking spots on the trailhead because it’s by the main road.
It’s best to do this trail in the morning as it gets extremely hot during the middle of the day. The scenery at the top was definitely the best aspect of hiking the Lost Mine Trail. It’s out of this world amazing! There are endless views of different shapes and colors of mountains and deserted lands.
Sitting down on one of the rocks and absorbing the beautiful view from the top was a priceless moment for us. We also saw some indigenous birds that were colored blue. They were very beautiful and friendly to humans. It was nice to see that these birds don’t feel threatened by people visiting the trail.
Easy Hike that Everyone can Enjoy
As mentioned, the Lost Mine Trail was easy to moderate. We were warned by the rangers that it gets hot during the day so the main challenge was arriving early. The trailhead is close to Chisos Basin Campground but it was full when we went. So we ended up camping in the Rio Grande Village the night before doing the hike. This was a great spot which we can highly recommend on your visit to Big Bend National Park.
Big Bend National Park is so big that driving from one campground to the next takes 1-2 hours. Our biggest challenge was to plan that drive, meaning we needed to be up by 5am if we wanted to start the hike by 7am. Despite the early wake up, our experience on the Lost Mine Trail was a good one!
Permits for the Lost Mine Trail
You can get your permits when you enter the park but you might need to book campgrounds ahead of time because they get full. One thing we learned is that since some people reserve six months ahead, a number of the reserved spots also get canceled on the day of the reservation. So don’t lose hope and always check the website for open sites in the morning.
Need to Know Before you Go
Bring your own water. You are going to need lots of water when in Big Bend. Instead of buying plastic bottles, bring your own bottle. The park has free water refilling stations at every junction and campground. Of course, don’t leave anything behind and don’t take anything with you. Leave only footprints and take only photos. It’s important to take care of the trail.
Plan ahead for your hike. It’s a big national park so make sure you have your campgrounds planned in advance. Gas is expensive inside the park but you will definitely need to put gas in at some point because the trails can be far away. Bring your own gas or plan your itinerary to prevent taking too many unnecessary trips. Thanks for reading everyone and enjoy the trail!