Big Bend... My Favorite Off Road Trails

by Larry Morton
(Texas, USA)

My Willys '53 M38A1 Jeep and me!

My Willys '53 M38A1 Jeep and me!

My Willys '53 M38A1 Jeep and me! Towed the Jeep on this trip! Mariscal Canyon in the Big Bend NP Santa Elena Canyon in the Big Bend NP

The Big Bend region is one of the most remote areas to explore, yet there are enough comfort amenities for just about anyone's taste.

I have camped out in the national park from the Rio Grande Village to the Chisos Mountain basin camp sites.

The basin area has a full service hotel, rental cabins and tent campsites available. I like the basin sites best because you can hike the mountain trails in any direction for days and still not see everything there.

I have explored the Big Bend (named after the significant bend in the Rio Grande River) in a 1974 International Scout II 4x4, a 1953 Willys M38A1 Jeep and a 1983 full-sized Ford Bronco 4x4.

Even though all of these vehicles were a blast on the trails the '53 M38A1 Jeep out-performed the others by a mile.

I love the unique wildlife and flora of the Chihuahuan Desert. This desert in the Big Bend region is very much alive and flourishing with beauty uncharacteristic of what we often think of in a "desert".

I hope to go back there in the near future. The drive is about 500 miles from my home...but the trip is well worth it.

Can't wait!

Larry,

Thanks for sharing your story and your pictures of Big Bend National Park with us. You’ve owned some impressive off road vehicles over the years. At the top of my “to do” list for 2011 is a trip to Big Bend National Park. You've only added fuel to my passion to go visit. Thanks and happy wheeling!

Andy
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Oct 29, 2015
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Yes
by: Larry

You might want to check with the park service people, but I believe that all motorized vehicles are allowed on the trails in the Big Bend National Park. You must stay on the trails designated for public vehicles. No venturing off into the desert making your own trails.

Oct 29, 2015
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Question
by: Anonymous

Is it legal to ride a Side by Side on these trails!

Jan 05, 2015
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Big Bend
by: Anonymous

I just got back from Big Bend and it is well worth the long drive. There are a lot of fun primitive roads in the National Park and be sure not to miss the unmaintained Black Gap road and the abandoned Mariscal Mine at the end of the road. Your Jeep makes me miss my old CJ5 but as I get older I do appreciate the AC and no leaks and the better seats in my Xterra.

Jan 21, 2011
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Hope to visit soon
by: William S

I like the old school pictures. I've always wanted to visit Big Bend and hope to go explore the desert there someday myself in my Jeep. Your story, description and your pictures are very descriptive to the point I almost felt I've been there myself. Thanks for sharing!

PS, I love the Jeep!

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