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blue El Capitan Trail

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Trail

9.4 mile 15.1 kilometer point to point
87% Runnable
Intermediate

Elevation

Ascent: 2,150' 655 m
Descent: -1,243' -379 m
High: 6,464' 1,970 m
Low: 4,983' 1,519 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 7% (4°)
Max Grade: 23% (13°)

Dogs

No Dogs
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Trail shared by Seth Lawder

This trail will take you through the Chihuahuan desert and along the base of El Capitan.

Seth Lawder

Features Cave · Fall Colors · Views · Wildflowers

No closures, open all year round.

Description

From the Williams Ranch parking area, this trail is 9.4 miles one way to its junction with Guadalupe Peak Trail so allow for an entire day to complete a round-trip run. Connecting off this trail to the south is the Salt Basin Overlook Trail. This trail forms a loop with the El Capitan Trail; the first junction is about five miles along the El Capitan Trail and the second is almost six miles in. The Salt Basin Overlook Trail can be completed as a loop or a simple and short out and back which offers amazing views. It also makes for a nice alternative return trail to add on a few extra miles.

The El Capital Trail is rarely traveled, is overgrown, and can be hard to follow. The weather in the park is extremely unpredictable and runners should plan accordingly. The first three miles of the trail climbs a moderately steep hill to the ridge. After the first junction with the Salt Basin Overlook Trail, the El Capitan Trail dips in and out of a couple small valleys to the end of the trail at the junction with Guadalupe Peak Trail.

There is nearly no shade along this trail, so sunscreen and hats to protect your skin are recommended. Although most runners turn around at the base of El Capitan, you can take the trail all the way to Williams Ranch.

Flora & Fauna

Cacti and a variety of desert flowers.

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  3.0 from 2 votes

#17309

Overall
  3.0 from 2 votes
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Rankings

#477

in Texas

#17,309

Overall
31 Views Last Month
1,033 Since Sep 30, 2015
Intermediate Intermediate

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