Black Gap OHV Trail is a 16.3 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Big Bend National Park, Texas that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for bird watching, horses, and off road driving and is accessible year-round. Horses are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 16.3 miles Elevation Gain: 935 feet Route Type: Out & Back

horseback riding

bird watching

ohv / off road driving

views

wildlife

rocky

washed out

A 4X4 trail in the Big Bend National Park, rarely maintained by the NPS Start at Glen Springs, and end on the River Road

ohv/off road driving
muddy
no shade
rocky
5 months ago

I drove this trail from N to S in a stock 2004 Mitsubishi Montero. The trail opens with some steps down into the spring, which requires a very sharp left hand turn. I did most of the first 4 miles in 4 Low, but sections could be done in 4 High. The spring was very wet when I was there with a solid 100 yards of mud and water. It was not very slick or deep. The next 2 miles varies between open scrub and canyon descents. One of the descents has a somewhat steep drop on the left hand side and is wide enough for a full size rig, but not much more. Some of the descent has small steps and boulders that require some articulation, although not a huge amount. A few places showed signs of being washed out towards the cliff, which could provide pucker factor if wet. The short canyon with "the step" was the most challenging portion of the trail. The step had plenty of debris and large rocks underneath so I just crawled up. The climb out of the canyon was actually more difficult, as it had many off camber steps that more than maxed out the limited articulation of my Montero. The traction control system activated a few times on the climb and I had only two wheels of contact much of this section. The rest of the trail alternates between open scrub land and washes. This portion can be completed in 2wd, unless flooded. I only encountered three other rigs on the trail. The first two were looking at it when I started and turned back without trying. The last one was a father and son who were in a lifted 2wd tacoma at the end of the trail. They said they were driving it from the S so they could descend the step instead of climb it. I warned them that they could probably make it down the step, but I did not think they could make it back out. They chose to continue. I hope they turned back before the step, or through some miracle made it out without a tow.

hiking
rocky
5 months ago

Did south to north from river road to glen springs. It was a great trip I underestimated how long it would take my girl had to stop and take pictures of everything. The last part of the trail was BiG Bend dark. I will return

ohv/off road driving
rocky
6 months ago

Loved it- little sketchy in some spots for a full width vehicle but it was gorgeous.

ohv/off road driving
rocky
6 months ago

Drove north to south with my son over Thanksgiving break. Very scenic and fun trail. Even though this was a busy time in park we only saw one other vehicle on the trail. A good test for my 16 yo son’s first trip in his Tacoma. I was driving my Raptor. No problems for either truck but Raptor is so wide plan on some pinstriping on the narrow sections. Only water was at Glen Spring at beginning of trail but it was minimal.

hiking
no shade
8 months ago

Very fun in the jeep

ohv/off road driving
Thu May 30 2019

Fun drive in souped up Wrangler. 1 narrow spot mid-way on the side of a mountain, but otherwise just wash outs and small whoops here and there. Did this N to S, but would recommend opposite.

ohv/off road driving
Sat May 04 2019

Loop Camp 2 to Black Gap Road via River Road, to Glenn Springs, back to River Road via Glenn Springs Road. The gap on Black Gap was traversed both ways, and there were stops at various places including Solis and the mercury mine. Overlapping previously traveled portion of River Road where River Road and Black Gap road intersect. Final destination back at camp. All done in 2wd except the Gap, done in 4Lo.

ohv/off road driving
Mon Feb 25 2019

This is the only unmaintained 4x4 road I would say truly meets my difination of a 4x4 trail. You will use your low range on this road! We drove it from south to north. After passing the Elephant Tusk camp ground the road got more challenging. There were two wet creek crossings. A 3 foot ledge. Plenty of ruts and rocks. All together this was a very enjoyable drive. Plus the view was spectacular and we had the added bouns of all the blooming flowers along the way. Average speed was 8.6 mph and moving travel time was one hour. Distance 8.5 miles. Driving south to north the accent was 694 feet and decent 427 feet. Maximum elavation was 2698 feet. The trail ends at Glen Springs, and for us, it was a wet crossing, too. You turn right out of the springs and drive up to meet the Glenn Springs Road.

ohv/off road driving
Sat Jan 12 2019

it was super muddy and loooong.

ohv/off road driving
Thu Dec 27 2018

Beautiful scenery! We were able to get our Badge of Honor (mobile app for Jeeps) fun trail but only one obstacle.

ohv/off road driving
Fri Dec 07 2018

Black Gap has some definite pucker spots but doable if you take it slow. I ran the trail in my 2017 Jeep Wrangler JKU Rubicon with no issues to get the Jeep Badge of Honor. Follow IG @dirtydeeds_jku

ohv/off road driving
Thu Dec 06 2018

Road as passenger in a Jeep Rubicon. Knarly road but well worth the time to drive.

ohv/off road driving
Tue Oct 30 2018

We did this trail in February, 2018. It was a blast. Traveled from the south to the north; the big step was a descent. There was a marshy section near a spring @ the end. When you clear this look hard right for a hill to get off of the trail. Completed in a 2014 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk.

Mon Oct 15 2018

Great fun and actually needed 4 low on two occasions. Beautiful sights.

Mon Sep 24 2018

Muddy wet wonderful test of my vehicle

Tue Jun 26 2018

easy and fun trail only a few spots of exitement. mostly awesome views of BBNP!!

ohv/off road driving
Thu Mar 15 2018

Did this trail last spring break in a stock 4Runner Trail model and had no problem.

ohv/off road driving
Fri Mar 09 2018

Such a blast. Easier than I expected for me and my stock Jeep Wrangler. Very scenic, beautiful trail. Only a couple of spots where actual 4wd was necessary. Look for the spot with the old grave sites on the hill! No signs but looks very historic. Overall, my favorite off-road trail at big bend.

ohv/off road driving
Wed Nov 22 2017

This was a fun and moderate trail! Much more exciting than the River Road which didn't have much more to offer than some sandy parts. I have a 2017 Rubicon with 32" tires and it had no problem at all on this trail. I used the sway bar disconnect for comfort more than anything but I didn't need any lockers. The step is fun but we didn't scrape the bottom or any skid plates.

ohv/off road driving
Wed Sep 20 2017

Always check with park rangers before driving Black Gap. 4x4 with high clearance is a must. We did it in a stock JKU, but thank goodness for skid plates! Coming from the south, it's harder to see the one drop-off (pictured).

ohv/off road driving
Fri Jan 13 2017

This was a very fun and slightly difficult off road drive. It could be difficult and scary for the inexperienced in parts. I had no problem driving it in a stock JK Wrangler. Four wheel drive low was required in a couple spots to get over some steep inclines and boulders.

ohv/off road driving
Fri Mar 08 2013

We drove this trail in March 2012 from east (Glen Springs) to the west in a stock Jeep Wrangler JK. The Park service seems to discourage using the Black Gap 4X4 road as they no longer maintain it. It is washed out in several places, but nothing a capable 4X4 can't handle. I would check with the NPS before driving it, especially after a big rain.

hiking
5 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

hiking
6 months ago

ohv/off road driving
6 months ago

hiking
11 months ago

ohv/off road driving
Sun May 19 2019

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