Explore the most popular Views trails in Franklin Mountains State Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

hiking
no shade
rocky
2 days ago

Very easy at the beginning, pretty flat. There were poppy flowers in some places. There isn’t shade and it is a bit of a long walk so make sure you’re prepared with plenty of water. When you get closer to the mines the trail is not as easy to find and gets steep. We ended up passing the entrance and only saw the metal grate...

Easy trail but a good workout with the hills. Saw people of all ages and a lot of dogs. Very nicely kept, the whole thing is paved with rest areas at the top.

hiking
rocky
4 days ago

My family and I hiked it today. Took an hour at our pace. Not too many people. This is the main access to the longer biking trails so be alert for bikers on the descent. Fun hike for us. Ascent leaves your blood pumping at the end. Good time for us.

Fun easy trail.

mountain biking
5 days ago

Love Mad Cow!

Short trail. Not my favorite in the park.

so very windy! a great scramble. The map at the trailhead says 7 miles round trip but it is more like 5 if you stay on the trail, 4 if you scramble. Dog friendly but I wouldnt bring my 30lb terrier unless there was significantly less windy. 2 cool caves

hiking
10 days ago

Nice, windy day for a leisurely hike.

I made it to the chains; my son made it to the window, and because I could not go further he turned around. I am 55 years old and when I started I saw teens, people in their 20s, 30s, and 40s all start with my son and I. They all turned around at the caves and only my son and I made it to the ridge. By the time you make it to the caves it is a dificult hike and I feel great that I made it as far as I did when others turned around. If you think the hike to the caves is tough, it only gets tougher, a lot more difficult until you make it to the ridge. This trail is really for people who are in great shape and/or have hiked or rock climbed in the past. It was very windy with gusts to 35mph or more.

The hike is challenging but well worth the effort, especially if you make it to the ridge. The view is gorgeous and you can see Texas, Mexico and New Mexico very clearly. I useda GoPro to document my trip and that was a worth-while investment.

I can't see taking a dog on this hike unless it is over 40 lbs. and very active. Despite what All Trails says this is not a dog friendly trail.

I compared All Trails app to Kamoot, and so far All Trails seems to be the better app. I went with the Pro version for both products but Kamoot has some very nice features as well.

Back to the trail --
I think the reason this trail is regarded as the hardest is becasue of the initial ascent and then the chains. Along the ridge the hike was moderate and fairly easy if you stay on the trail (the blue markers) but the trail could be marked better.

This is trail is not for beginners. I repeat not for beginners!! You will be tested physically, mentally, and spiritually. Trail takes about 6-10 hours depending on you and/or the group your with. I recommend taking at least one hour of break time and splitting it into 9 five minute breaks and a 15 minute lunch break. Bring plenty of snacks and fruit as this will take a lot of energy out of you. Pack a lunch as well. I recommend eating healthy (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) the night before and getting a good nights rest. Bring a camel pack to store food and water. I would advise you not to start this trail no later than 8am. Sunset is 6:30pm during winter and you don’t want to be caught up in that mountain in the dark. Do not take any pets. You will run the risk of safety for you and your pet. Their paws can get blisters or cut up because of the jagged ridgeline rocks. Also there is a lot of rock climbing involved. This is about 75% trail and 25% rock climbing. Do not take kids with you. This trail offers a lot of scenic views. You will feel a big sense of accomplishment if you complete it. Be sure to wear hiking shoes! You will need the support and grip for your feet! I started at the thousand steps trail and ended all the way at the end of the Ron Coleman trail where the trans mountain side is. This is where the “elephant” looking rock trail is. Used all trails app and was 9.2 miles. Stay on the ridgeline!! Do not hike down the mountain it will slow you down because of cacti and other fauna. I would recommend you do the thousand steps trail and Ron Coleman before attempting this. My buddy had no hiking experience and isn’t fit and did this hike with me. It was his first hike ever and Although he did complete it he pushed his body to the point of exhaustion and starting throwing up towards the end. Good luck!

P.s. take an eternal battery to charge your phone. You will be using a lot of battery if your using the app. I have t mobile and was able to get service up on mountain

hiking
rocky
13 days ago

Good trail, gets a little steeper and slippery rocks at the end.

hiking
rocky
scramble
13 days ago

awesome sights. kind of hard getting past some loose rock clkse to the caves entrance.

hiking
15 days ago

Awesome hike !! Wasn’t easy but once on top well worth it !

hiking
rocky
15 days ago

Moderately difficult hike. Beautiful views of the area. Started on the south side and made it to the window and went back. Very windy.

hiking
no shade
rocky
17 days ago

Did it this past Sunday. Walked about 1 hour before it started going up. Last past of trail going towards mine is a bit sketchy to navigate but well worth it. My 13 year daughter made up to the top.

hiking
no shade
17 days ago

great trail. 1st time doing it and loved it. Doing it again in the future. some areas with very loose rock.

what a great place! the hike was great, staff is very helpful.

Challenging hike, great views. I can't imagine many people actually do this as an out-and-back as suggested by AllTrails. I walked from Transmountain through to McKelligon Canyon, with a quick spur to South Franklin Peak, before getting a ride back to my car. That hike took about 3 hours. I would recommend doing it that way, or turning around at South Franklin Peak and returning to where you started.

Not too difficult, path well indicated, nothing special to see, not much trafics. Toilet available at trailhead.

Fun for beginners and with little ones. Good exercise, a stretch of the legs.

on Aztec Cave Trail

hiking
18 days ago

great hike but for me it was hard

Busy trail on a Saturday. Everyone was friendly and courteous. Lots of military hiking with mobility packs. walking the ridge lines avoids the many mountain bikes. Lots of gorgeous flowers today. Recommendation is to hike to the mines on one foot path and take a separate path back. Allow three hours.

hiking
rocky
20 days ago

hiking
no shade
rocky
scramble
20 days ago

Really fun trail. Good for those who like to navigate and trail find. We took the trail up to the window and then returned. 4 miles in 3 hours.

hiking
no shade
rocky
scramble
washed out
21 days ago

Bring hats and sunscreen. And pay attention so you don’t miss the left turn at around .75 miles in. You need to turn under the power lines and head up a wash for about 300 feet to two pylons. The trail continued up from there.

hiking
rocky
22 days ago

Good solid trail. Directions can be slightly confusing on which is the most direct way to the mines, but AT map is really helpful. Trail that goes directly to the mines from the one level down is hidden/disguised as it's a bif rock step.
Great for first timers as there are multiple and easy side trails and the last leg is great for those who don't mind a bit of a challenge.
Also a great beginning hike for dogs - make sure they have plenty of water!

hiking
22 days ago

The trail starts in a “wash” that is super rocky for the first mile or so. After that it becomes more compact. It’s easy to navigate. And the opening at the GAO has great views of El Paso.

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