High Times and Higher Temps in Big Bend!! (Day 10)

After our overly-exciting off-road adventure in the Tahoe, we decided to save trails for hiking, and roads for driving. Our campground was only a few miles by trail from Big Bend’s famous hot springs, so we decided to get up early (for us) and hike over before it got too hot.  Apparently we weren’t the only ones who decided to get up early–when we stuck our heads out of the truck, a very relaxed coyote was sauntering past our site:

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We let him go on his merry way, then drove up to the Daniel’s Ranch Trailhead, and started our hike. It was an overcast morning, but from the hilltops, the sunrise was dream-like over the Rio Grande.

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As the sun continued to rise, and the clouds burned off, the views continued to to awe and amaze. Every new turn of the trail gave way to a gorgeous new panorama.

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After about an hour’s hike, we made it to the hot springs! And they were as beautiful as we’d been told–piping hot water, bubbling up from the vent and spilling over the edge and into the freezing cold Rio Grande.


We were already pretty sweaty by the time we arrived, but we jumped behind some bushes to change, and slid right in. It felt AMAZING.  The view was awesome, we made some friends with some fellow hotspringers, and we couldn’t get over how easy it would have been to literally wade into Mexico in less than 30 seconds. Protip–the best way to enjoy the hotsprings is to sit outside of them against the wall, so they are running over your neck and shoulders, while your feet are in the Rio. Such a cool sensation!

After a a while, we realized we didn’t want to be hiking at noon, so we headed back. It was getting hot. Like, really hot. When we got back to the car, this is what the Tahoe had to say:

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Which, translated to English, means NOPE. We had some work to do, so we spent our afternoon with cold drinks at the campground office, which had shaded outdoor seating and wifi. Not only that – some of the locals came out to hang out!

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I’d never seen a roadrunner up close before, so I was super excited that this one came so close. Obviously, he was pretty comfortable with people, but he didn’t get too pushy — probably because we didn’t have any food.

At dinnertime, we headed back to camp, and enjoyed a beautiful evening of stargazing and wine drinking.



I grew up in New Jersey, went to college in Virginia, and married a girl from New Hampshire, so I can drive the East Coast in my sleep. I love exploring, jumping out of airplanes, whitewater rafting, fast cars, comic books, and generally refusing to act my age. More practically, I love budgeting and financial planning, renovating and updating older homes (and now campers), and learning to make our family as self-sustaining as possible.

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