Santa Elena, Big Bend National Park
Stunning Santa ElenaAn eight hour's drive from our Austin home and an entire world away, Santa Elena Canyon is a Big Bend classic not to be missed.
Cut by the Rio Grande River which creates the U.S./Mexico border, this spectacular slot canyon is one of the most scenic areas in Big Bend National Park.
The brief 1.7-mile round trip hike is suitable for hikers of all levels and boasts breathtaking views that grow more dramatic as you ascend along steep paved-step switchbacks to a sweeping vista. Follow the rugged sloping trail back to the water's edge to absorb a view of massive 1,500-foot cliffs forming the canyon walls jutting up from the river.