Saturday, September 23, 2006

Big Bend National Park, No. 2, Santa Elena Canyon

In my last post on Big Bend National Park down at the bottom of Texas next to Mexico, I showed some of the cactus life there. In this post, I'll be focusing on some of the geological and landscape features of the Santa Elena Canyon and the Rio Grande River in Big Bend. All pictures were taken in May of 1997.


A view of the entrance to the Santa Elena Canyon



The walls of the Santa Elena Canyon are 1500 feet high.



The Rio Grande flowing through the Santa Elena Canyon
My hike took a U-turn here.



When I came out of the Santa Elena Canyon, I had to cross through a feeder creek to the Rio Grande. The water was up over my knees and covered a stretch across of thirty to forty feet. It had been a dry creek bed as pictured below when I first started my hike that morning.


If these pictures attract you to the Santa Elena Canyon, you might want to check out this Southwest Paddlers web page.


Looking Towards the Rio Grande
Before Entering the Canyon



A distant view



A near view

21 comments:

Ava said...

What a beautiful scene. Great pictures.

mreddie said...

Some nearly breathtaking views. God does all things well. ec

Daniele Marioli said...

Hey!! Spectacular this shot! bravo!! Trekking is your passion?
Good!!
Ciao!!

Edulabbe said...

Just one word: WOW!!!
Impressive landscapes!!!
Greetings from Chile

Carmel said...

Tim this place looks awesome, I've always wanted to see this kind of thing and also go to mexico. I hope to go!

Anonymous said...

i'm so impressed with these photos, i wish i can be there.

Naturegirl said...

Absolutely majestic! Thank you for posting!

Lynn said...

Hi Tim. Whenever I see a beautiful scenery, I always wonder how the pictures will turn out if you took them... :-) Have a blessed day

Anonymous said...

Hi Tim, we loved the Santa Elena canyon and came close to naming our daughter Elena as a result. The pictures of the Rio Grande we have up HERE
are in the Santa Elena Canyon.

Tim Rice said...

Hi, ava. Glad you enjoyed it. It was really impressive being there in person.

Hi, mreddie. And so He does, mreddie. And so God does do all things well!

Thanks, daniele marioli. The spectacularness of nature never ceases to amaze me. I love hiking and if I can travel from time to time so much more the better.

Thanks, edulabbe. We do have some impressive landscapes in the States; but from my limited knowledge of the geography of your country, you, too, must have spectacular landscapes in Chile.

Hi, carmel. If you get the chance, do go and see it for yourself. It is well worth it!

Hi, jazzy. Glad you enjoyed the photos. So many photos I see of different parts of the world make me want to visit sometime though most places I probably never will. I am grateful for the places I have been privileged to see both near and far.

Hi, naturegirl. Santa Elena and Rio Grande are majestic, awe-inspiring. Nature's designer must be unspeakably awesome.

Hi, lynn. One takes vacation photos for one's memories. If they are not perfect, that is not necessarily bad. They can still bring back the feel of the place and the good times we had there.

Hi, kevin stilley. It was fun looking at your pictures of Santa Elena Canyon. Have you ever canoed, kayaked, or rafted on the Rio Grande in the Santa Elena Canyon? It sounds like it could be a wonderfully fun and aesthetically pleasing thing to do.

Merili said...

Looks like a place i would LOVE!!! :)

M(urf)! said...

Amazing pictures.

Ed Abbey said...

It always felt kind of ironic that the thing that worries me most when hiking in the desert canyon lands is water. Many times I've been hiking canyons and have had to fjord streams that weren't there on my way in or had to sit and wait for an hour for them to go down enough to get back across.

Tim Rice said...

Hi, merili. If you enjoy nature and hiking, I'm positive you would enjoy visiting here.

Thanks, murf. It is an amazing place.

Hi, ed abbey. Isn't that a paradox - worrying about too much water in a desert type area? But I understand. I wasn't sure what I wanted to do till I saw two other people successfully make it across. In this particular situation, there were thunderstorms the night before; but it was a bright sunny morning when I started the hike and so I thought nothing about it being the Easterner that I am.

San Nakji said...

This is what America is all about to me!

Tim Rice said...

Hi, san nakji. It's amazing, it is. But America is much broader than this - from its plains, its forests, its non-desert mountains, its coasts, its wetlands, and much more.

Cergie said...

I would like to go there !
We feel so small when being in such a marvellous lanscape !

In Marocco, there are in the desert cliffs like that, in France too but not so hudge.

Tim Rice said...

Hi, cergie. It is a neat place to visit actually awesome. Size-wise, it does almost make us look like ants. But our bodies and our personhoods in they way they are intricately made and function are greater wonders many times over to me.

sage said...

gotta love those canyons!

Ginnie said...

I'm looking at these pics while at the airport, Tim, and am having a great time catching up (thank God for wireless!). You have had some wonderful experiences!

Tim Rice said...

Hi, sage. How true! The magnificence of the Santa Elena Canyon cannot be fully communicated unless one visits.

Thanks, ginnie. You are right that I have had many wonderful experiences. Sometimes I just need to be reminded of that. :)