Franklin Mountains Loop

HARD 20 reviews

Franklin Mountains Loop is a 3.4 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near El Paso, Texas that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

3.4 miles
958 feet

dog friendly



mountain biking

nature trips

rock climbing

trail running




wild flowers


old growth

over grown


Hike to the old mine, the bridge, Mundys Gap and West Cottonwood Spring. Follow the main trail. At 0.58 miles there is a junction. Follow the main trail left. At 1.22 miles there is a wooden bridge. At 1.68 miles you arrive at Mundys Gap. From the benches, study the ridgeline south. Find a narrow trail marked with rocks at the entrance following the ridgeline. Take that trail. At 1.85 miles find a trail that leaves the ridgeline right and downhill. Follow the trail downhill to West Cottonwood Spring at 2.0 miles. Follow the trail downhill from the spring. At 2.24 miles you come to the trail junction again. Look carefully for a narrow trail entrance to the left. Follow this trail south up the slope for about 30 feet, then turn almost due west. Do not take the downhill slope. At 2.58 the trail will fork. Follow the narrow trail to the left around the hilltop, and across to the next hilltop west. You should pass a bench on that hilltop. Follow the main trail down and north to end on the main trail near the parking lot.

1 month ago

This is a nice trail that starts at the West Cottonwood Trailhead. It takes you to an area of trees and a small spring that it is more showy in the rainy season. From this area you start to walk by the steepest section of the trail, then you reach the rim of the mountain from were you have a beautiful view of the Franklin Mountains and the city of El Paso.

9 months ago

Very nice but fairly difficult trail. Lots of uphill climbs. Very good views of the Franklin Mountains and the valley below.

Monday, September 11, 2017

The view from the ridge-line above the cottonwoods is much better than from the lookout at Mundy's Gap. It's also a lot less crowded. A wonderful alternative to the somewhat monotonous 'jeep trail' leading to Mundy's Gap. The climb from west cottonwood to the ridge line is the hardest part of the hike, but all in all, it wasn't difficult at all. Make sure your shoes have good ankle support... lots of big, chunky rocks on this trail.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Very nice trail, I visited with my granddaughter and was not difficult to hike. The loop trail starts to the right just passing the entrance of the West Cottonwood Trail. You continue on the trail climbing the hill. At about 0.7 of a mile there is an intersection with a trail that connects to the West Cottonwood Trail, we took the trail to our right climbing the hill. We continued on this trail around the hillside until we reached the West Cottonwood Spring at about the mile 1.6. The trail on the hillside, with some rocky sections, is well marked, and with care, easy to walk. Although is not shown on the map, the trail on the hillside is there and is frequently used. We stopped for a while at the nice Cottonwood Spring area, with trees, plants and a small arroyo. We climbed the rock hill and at the top we enjoyed the beautiful views. Then we continued on the trail to our left climbing the mountain until we reached the ridge, then we turned to our left to reach the Mundy's Gap at about the mile 2. After contemplating the east side of El Paso, sitting on the bench, we returned on the Mundy's Gap Trail to the West Cottonwood Trail entrance were we started.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

I didn't hike 15 miles, but this was a great climb and the view was awesome

Tuesday, February 08, 2011


5 months ago

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Sunday, June 25, 2017

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Sunday, November 06, 2016

Thursday, November 03, 2016

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

mountain biking
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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

mountain biking
Saturday, April 05, 2014