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Closed Canyon Trail is a 1.8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Terlingua, Texas that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and nature trips. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 1.8 miles Elevation Gain: 396 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

hiking

nature trips

river

wild flowers

muddy

rocky

scramble

Descend into Closed Canyon's slot for a 1.8-mile round-trip trek from Big Bend's scenic River Road toward the Mexican border and the raging Rio Grande. The trail takes you into the mouth of the canyon as it winds it way back and forth deeper into the canyon. There are some points where you have to climb down past some boulders or drop-offs to continue. The rock floor is slippery, especially since it is covered with loose dirt, so be sure to watch your footing. Near the end of the trail, there is a fairly high drop-off (maybe 12 feet). Jumping down to continue will be a lot easier than climbing back up and out, so use your judgment so you don't get yourself stranded. If you have some rope and climbing shoes, it would be very helpful. Some climber has driven in a metal stake to tie off a rope to and there are some foot holds and places to grab/stand.

hiking
20 hours ago

An enjoyable trail in Big Bend Ranch State Park. This would be considered the jewel of the park. Most of it will be shaded within a canyon, but you are in South West Texas so always have water with you and plenty of it. The trail will end before what is indicated on the map due to high standing water.

hiking
2 days ago

Amazing walking through the canyon. It does dead end and there’s a cone saying the trail ends, looked very temporary so I wasn’t sure if you would be able to go further when it’s dry. First few minutes of the trail has no shade but then it’s shades in the canyon and much cooler. Have to climb up and down a few big rocks, proper hiking shoes are recommended for the grip they provide

hiking
no shade
rocky
2 days ago

Hiked this trail on the job since 1986. Nice trail. Bring plenty of water. Get out and hike!

hiking
5 days ago

We went during the day (yes I know, lol) there’s minimal to no shade & I know others have made it further than us, but idk how. There was a pool of green/brown stagnate water thar was too large to jump over (and something was moving in it lol) so that was our end. There are some mini boulders u have to climb over but not difficult. We had 2 kids 12 & 5yrs old w us

hiking
closed
16 days ago

this was breathtaking! Easy trail. We went in about .09 miles and it was closed off so we turned back.

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

Need rope to get till the end.

hiking
1 month ago

Shaded canyon which makes for a nice hike, but the drop offs got to be too large to attempt by myself so I turned around about a mile in.

hiking
1 month ago

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE DO NOT ATTEMPT TO CLIMB ALL THE WAY DOWN TO THE RIO GRANDE. Continue on the trail until you have to start climbing down, then turn back. This past weekend, I had to be rescued from Big Bend Ranch State Park after descending down the canyon and being stuck at the bottom. It took 30 hours from when I started the hike to be rescued and I spent the last 2 nights in a hospital recovering from near kidney failure. It was quite the traumatic experience, one that I wouldn’t wish on anyone. Also please don’t ever hike alone; it’s not worth the risk. All it takes is just one bad outing and that could be the end of your life. My rescuers and medical staff(all amazing people!!) let me know how lucky I was. Seems there have been others who did what I did and didn’t live to tell about it. So please learn from my experience.

hiking
flooded
1 month ago

hiking
flooded
scramble
1 month ago

Large water puddle at bottom of long slide did not allow us to make it to the end of the canyon unfortunately.

hiking
4 months ago

This is an interesting and generally easy hike through a narrow canyon, with much shade. There are several slick spots and good hiking shoes are recommended. The end of the trail is not at the river! But rather it is at a steep narrow chute that leads down to the flood plain. I’m advised by a seasoned river guide that climbing equipment is needed to get back up if hikes decide to slide down. The alternative is to go down to the river and loop back a couple of miles.

hiking
4 months ago

Stunning. Still has a pool of standing water further down the trail. Water is looking pretty funky and several feet deep - didn’t want to wade through or risk falling trying to scramble around.

hiking
5 months ago

Great trail! We had spent the last couple of Days hiking in the national park and debated if this was worth the drive over. The kids ages 3-10 loved it, and so did we. Little Rock drops and slides made for lots of fun. We made it 0.9 miles in but there was standing water we decided not to wade through. It was a great hike for us adults also. The drive over was also beautiful and my kids thought it was as fun as the hike.

hiking
6 months ago

Don’t let the moderate rating discourage you. The first half is very easy and totally worth it. After a short downhill you enter the stream bed which is dark sand/gravel with light boulders dotting it. The contrast is stunning and the walking is easy. It enters the slot canyon which is like a manicured path for a good distance. It gets progressively more difficult as you go, so you can simply turn back when you hit your comfort limit. You won’t feel short changed. We had rain the previous day so the pools were deep and we turned around after the second one. I tried hard to reach the end, even waded waist deep across one, but finally gave up. We had a blast! Definitely a no go with possible rain. There would be no way out of a flash flood! It is narrow with vertical walls. Absolutely beautiful!

hiking
6 months ago

We took three kids, ages 2, 5 and 7. They had no problem and loved the “slides” you need to navigate to get down the trail.

hiking
7 months ago

Beautiful trail. Easy to walk on. We took the dogs and had to lift them down several of the drop offs but it wasn't hard to do with two people. We made it a long way down but turned around at a drop off we didn't feel comfortable taking the dogs down. Still worth it even without finishing!

walking
scramble
7 months ago

This is a super fun trail at Big Bend Ranch State Park! It's a very cool slot canyon that takes you down a narrow path with tall rock walls on either side. As you progress, there are some drops that require a jump/slide down that may be beyond your comfort level, especially if you are solo. I found that I hit a point where I was no longer comfortable and decided to turn back. But I was quite satisfied with how far I got, and I would recommend everybody go as far as they are comfortable, you will not be disappointed! Also, important note, do NOT do this trail if there is a chance of rain, as this can become a river in a flash flood, which is very dangerous!

hiking
7 months ago

If you're in Big Bend Ranch State Park, this is a must do. If you're at Big Bend National Park, don't waste half a day getting over to the State park to do this trail.

hiking
8 months ago

Awesome trail with kids. We turned around at the first “jar” because it looked difficult for the kids.

hiking
muddy
9 months ago

I love this hike. Very easy. Cool in the canyon. It’s truly a hidden gem! Was muddy at spots but still easily traversable. Haven’t made it to the river because it gets too sketchy after the second drop, I’ll still do over and over... maybe one day make it to the end!

hiking
rocky
scramble
10 months ago

We took this to the second pool of water after easily but a little sketchily scaling around the first. When we reached the second we couldn’t see where it ended, and noticed the hornet/wasp nests, and the growing number of the not so friendly flyers. No one was stung, and they didn’t really bother us. The canyon provided great scenery and a lot of picturesque moments. Great short hike!

hiking
off trail
rocky
10 months ago

hiking
Sun Mar 24 2019

Fantastic (easy) hike with kids (ages 2,3, and 7). It was nicely shaded on a March afternoon. The little kids hiked most of it on their own feet (my 2 year old even took her shoes off and hiked barefoot, splaying her toes for grip on the slick feet of the canyon walls, then sliding down on her bottom). The vibrant colors on the canyon walls shifted with the changes in light. Just gorgeous. We came across a “jar” or water, as others mentioned. Watched a teen scale the canyon wall to get around the pooled water, and then he reported back that there was another deeper pool, so we opted to hike back. I look forward to returning on future trips to BBRSP.

rock climbing
bugs
scramble
Wed Mar 13 2019

"jar's" are wet.. first one is 3-4 feet deep.. second one is waist deep and extremely cold ... hike ended with the discovery of a large nest of some kind of wasp or hornet as you leave the water.. escaped with only couple stings but could've been much worse.. left a visibly growing swarm as we hurriedly retreated

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