360° VR Panoramas of West Texas
Santa Elena Canyon
Texas


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Santa Elena Canyon Overlook in Big Bend National Park

Santa Elena Canyon Overlook in Big Bend National Park

This startling view of the Santa Elena Canyon section of the Rio Grande amazes people. They ask, why did the river cut through the mountain instead of going around it?

Big Bend National Park, Texas

Date photographed: March 28, 2014
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Approaching Santa Elena Canyon on the Rio Grande

Approaching Santa Elena Canyon on the Rio Grande

The Rio Grande flows out of dramatic Santa Elena Canyon into flat country near Castolon. Downstream it runs through flatlands, low hills, and minor canyons then plunges into deep narrow Boquillas Canyon.

Big Bend National Park, Texas

Date photographed: March 28, 2014
See location in Google Maps

Switchback trail Into Santa Elena Canyon

Switchback trail Into Santa Elena Canyon

The trail into Santa Elena Canyon switchback steeply up to gain a ledge, then runs level into the gorge.

Big Bend National Park, Texas

Date photographed: March 28, 2014
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Trail climbs high into Santa Elena Canyon

Trail climbs high into Santa Elena Canyon

The trail into the mouth of Santa Elena Canyon must climb high to bypass the cliffs along the river

Big Bend National Park, Texas

Date photographed: March 28, 2014
See location in Google Maps

Santa Elena Canyon on the Rio Grande

Santa Elena Canyon on the Rio Grande

The center of the river is the international boundary, the far shore is Mexico. From that side it is known as the Rio Bravo.

Big Bend National Park, Texas

Date photographed: March 28, 2014
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Rio Grande/Rio Bravo in Santa Elena Canyon

Rio Grande/Rio Bravo in Santa Elena Canyon

The trail into the canyon climbs high to avoid cliffs then descends to river level. Past this point you will need to wade, swim, or have a boat as the cliffs drop sheer into the water

Big Bend National Park, Texas

Date photographed: March 28, 2014
See location in Google Maps

Previous locality: Castolon Next locality: River Road