Explore the most popular trails near Basin Junction with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Basin Junction, Texas Map

Went counterclockwise since we did Emory Peak last spring break, so wanted a new experience. Started at 8am and didn't see any people the first 90 mins, but did come across deer 3 miles in. Had a nice long lunch on south rim. 7.5 hours including lunch and several breaks for photos. Great day hike and not too strenuous. Enjoy!!!

This is the trail to do if you come to Big Bend. We did Emory Peak along the way. Started at 7 am, took 3 hours to Emory Peak. Trail gets rough near the peak, but it's there. 2 more hours to the Rim from there, then approximately 3 more hours back to the trailhead. Including stops and lunch, about 9 hours to complete the 15 miles.

As far as preparation, we did bring toilet paper as there are bathrooms along the trail. 25L of water between 5 people was way more than we needed. Probably 2.5-3L per person would have been right. Admittedly it was cool and cloudy when we hiked, so warmer weather should warrant more than that.

The views are all there, just come prepared and it'll be a great hike!

Completed the OML 3-13-18 to 3-15-18 three days two nights during spring break week. I would not recommend attempting this hike during spring break for those planning ahead next year it was a zoo. If you must do it during spring break then go towards the end of the week it was much less crowded no line to get into the basin.

Would also recommend bigbendchat.com to learn more about the trail and get excellent advice and updates on water locations that can be found on the trail. I was able to filter 4 L of water from a spring on the trail that I learned about from this website.

Overall it is a gorgeous, but tough hike so be sure to pack as light as possible since you’ll be carrying a lot of water with you. Additionally, stay the night at the lodge or perhaps in Alpine Texas and get to the panther junction station early next day so that you can get desirable campsite locations. We did not get to panther Junction until around 1:30 PM so were stuck with zone camping in Juniper Canyon first night and blue Creek zone camping the second night making day two a long 15.5 mile day.

Lastly, as other reviewer‘s have mentioned this trail is hard and not for the beginner backpacker. Unfortunately, we ran into a group of young men in their late teens early 20s who were ill prepared for this trail. They had started on the Dodson trail. One person had a day pack and was carrying his sleeping bag in his arms. I don’t know if the group made it past the basin, but he did not look like he was having a good time when we caught up to them midway on the Dodson trail.

Best advice for the OML is to plan ahead and have the right gear.

Fantastic hike!

Toughest Hike I have ever done.... YOU MUST PREPARE! Recommend bigbendchat.com and read everything.

Extremely demanding loop with a very high failure rate, and not for the inexperienced. Couple of thoughts/lessons.

1. This trail is no joke, water is a big issue, and I can see this trail flat out being very very dangerous for inexperienced or unprepared backpackers.
2. I can't imagine doing this trail much past mid-march, the Dodson was pretty brutal in the afternoon already
3. I wore shorts which was stupid, although I enjoyed the coolness, zipper pants for flexibility in the desert would have been better
4. We added both Emory Peak and the South Rim (at SW3) to the trip (total mileage ended up being 43 miles due to some side trial action. Unless you have been or plan to return I cannot imagine doing the OML without adding the South Rim, it was far and away the best part of the whole trip.
5. The trail is rough, very very rocky, and suggest you put a lot of time in prep into your shoe/sock/feet/knee plan as I think those issues are most likely to cause a stoppage.
6. I carried a 4.5L water capacity and drank at least 2 litrer before every fill up (beginning, upper juniper, and Homer Wilson). That was enough, although I wish I had probably 1 more liter on the Dodson and going up Blue Creek in the afternoon.
7. Make sure you have a plan for lots of electrolytes, I think that is a game changer vs. just plain water.
8. Pack light! My pack was 10-15 lbs lighter than my buddies and I think was the difference in finishing/not finishing. I also cowboy camped with only a groundsheet and emergency tarp (that I needed one night) which saved a good amount of weight.

My wife and I went out via Pinnacles (more elevation change) and returned via Laguna Meadows and I would recommend it.

We hike slightly faster than average but are by no means 'speedy.' The whole loop took us 5 hours of hiking with an additional 0.5 hr lunch break at the Rim. (We did not go to Emory Peak or take the NE Rim).

Trail Difficulty: Moderate (mainly just long)
Exposure: Moderate, plenty of shaded areas.

It was an ~80F day, I had about 2 L of H20 which seemed reasonable. However, I had at least one already that morning before starting.

Beautiful trail. Strenuous, but manageable. Will definitely be back!

Long day way, but worth the effort for the stunning views. Do the full South Rim circuit (Southeast and Northeast Rim trails). Camping sites available along the South Rim. If there's one walk you do in Big Bend NP, do this one...

Backpacked overnight, not terribly strenuous. Views were spectacular. Will definitely be back.

Must do. Took Pinnacles to Emory Peak, Boot Canyon down around SE Rim, around South Rim back up Laguna in one day. ~17 miles in ~10 hours. Made for a long day but was incredibly worth it.

Really tough hike for me, but well worth it! A picture can’t do justice to the views. Recommend staying in SE 4 campsite.

Loved every minute of it! I camped at SE1 and to say I was a happy camper is putting it lightly! The views were incredible. A saw enough people, but had plenty of alone time as well. It was perfect.

Awesome views and very challenging! Loved every minute! My new favorite trail. Going down just a scenic.

best hike so far in all my hikes! The scramble to get to the peak was a little much for me but totally worth it!

Ran it in 2:20 excluding ~20 minutes of picture taking. Nice trail with a variety of scenery & terrain. Really loved the Boot Canyon. The view is a big payoff

A tough hike with outstanding views lots of snow on the mountains which was refreshing to see. Took almost 6 hours to do 12 miles, stopped for snacks and views of amazing landscape a couple of times. Would highly recommend comfortable boots that you have trust in. Loved the Hike and the park.

Great views, campsites.

Excellent hike. Very demanding. Can be done in two days, but recommend three. Well marked. No water, have to cache. Primitive campsites few and far between. Zone camping allowed once past the main trails in the park, but the terrain is very rugged, so plan carefully.

2 months ago

Gradual climb until the last several miles when you climb out of the drainage. Interesting rock formations

2 months ago

Beautiful hike up the drainage through some lush canyon foliage, nice rock formations, and a grueling climb to the peak. All very much worth the effort.

By far the best hike I’ve ever done. Rewarding, and challenging.

Beautiful views, enjoyed every bit of it!

My GF and I did this in Mid-October. Great sunny and mild temperatures. We camped as well. Tbh, I had never been to Big Bend, and totally overshot my expectations- I had no idea there could be so much lush beautiful in Texas!

Camping sucked- not a big deal, it happens. I saw some baby bears, and decided to camp in the more populated camping areas, where there were some loud teenagers.

The hike itself was great. Not very trekked, so traffic was light. The switchbacks going up and down for 1.5miles each way is def a Quad killer. The views at the top are amazing and worth it! You’ll feel the reward. Bring a hammock and take it all in at the top when you get there!

That said- I felt every bit of the 12.5 miles the next day.
Would def do it again. Would def also get permits and camp that trail. It’s a beautiful hike. A lot of water options. A lot of wildlife too. This is a very desolate hike- meaning hard to get to if you were to need help or bailout, so prepare yourself accordingly.

Ps. I have more pictures and info on this and my other BackCountry hiking explorations on my IG- Colewurlddd

What a great loop backpack trip with a lot a changes in elevation. Great views with lots of variety of habitats. According to my mapping software the total climbing elevation was 11,324 feet. At least 1 water cache is required by the NPS. It's a very demanding multi day backpacking trip. Give yourselves plenty of time to complete each day. There were groups that didn't complete the first day until 10:30 at night ran out of water halfway through the second day.

Great hike, but strenuous!

Added the North Rim Loop to this loop, great long day hike.

This is a solid hike. Went up Pinnacles and looped around clockwise. 5 hours hiking plus a 20 minute break at South Rim two days after snowfall. Pretty majestic views up the Pinnacles and, of course, at the rim. One of my top two hikes (so far).

Completed this trail on 11/20/2017. We parked at the amphitheater, hiked Pinnacles Trail to Boot Canyon then took the NE Rim Trail around to the SW-4 campsite. The campsite was amazing, about 100 feet or so to the rim with amazing east facing views. The next morning we hiked around the South Rim Trial with many stops along the way to check out the views. We continued around the Laguna Meadows Trail back to the Amphitheater. Total round trip was about 14 miles.

Tough strenuous but breathtaking

This is absolutely gorgeous trail and offers so many breathtaking views of the south side of the park. Surreal at sunrise and moon rise. WOW!!!!

My brother and i hiked this on the 8th of November and spent the night on the southeast rim! Absolutely incredible view from near our campsite.

We hiked clockwise and did the entire rim, emory Peak, and had planned on going back up Laguna meadows but due to some other advice we ended up going back Colima to pinnacles. We got a lot of fog throughout in the beginning. It seemed to clear off by the afternoon. But it did cloud our view on emory Peak and most of the first half of the hike. One of the reasons we went back on pinnacles to get the full experience.

We packed 2 gallons of water a piece and it was a very good amount for hydration and the luxury of coffee while watching the sunset on the rim. We took 2 days. Started at 9 the first day and got to camp around 4. The second day we also started at 9 and got back to the basin around 2. We clocked 17.8 mi total the route we went.

Incredible hike with some difficult sections if you are carrying water and overnight gear but completely worth it!! I would absolutely recommend taking the extra mileage to travel the full rim trail!

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