Today two friends and I made the trip from Austin out to Big Bend National Park for a few days of camping and backpacking. The drive out was pretty cool, with lots of interesting clouds to take photos of. And when we arrived at the trailhead, the weather was just about perfect. We still had some cloud cover as we made our way from the Chisos Basin up Pinnacles Trail to today’s destination of TM1 (Toll Mountain) campsite.
While on the trail, we came across three black bears. They were looking for food and didn’t mind us taking photos and watching them for a while. It was our first time to see a bear at Big Bend so we were all stoked!
The top of Pinnacles Trail is pretty tough, especially with heavy backpacks, but we made it to the top successfully. It was at the junction of the TM1 campsite, Pinnacles Trail, and Emory Peak Trail that we saw the evidence of the fires that swept through the Chisos. Lots of trees were blackened and burnt, and the smell of burnt wood lingered in the air. Luckily, the campsite was untouched so we were able to set up our tents, cook dinner, and then fall asleep pretty quickly. We were all worn out from the hike, and also the long day of driving.
Here are a few snapshots and Strava data from today. Enjoy!