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Desert camping in Texas with hiking

The largest state in the Lower 48 features no shortage of places to pitch a tent.

95% (3490 reviews)
95% (3490 reviews)

Popular camping styles for Texas

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Star Hosts in Texas

12 top desert campgrounds in Texas with hiking

98%
(1040)

Goat Pens, Cigar Springs Ranch

50 sites · RVs, Tents640 acres · Terlingua, TX
This central location provides an ideal basecamp close to the Terlingua Ghost Town and both Big Bend State and National Parks. The unique geology and topography of the Goat Pens made this a popular movie set and many westerns were filmed here in the 80's and 90's. Come out and enjoy seclusion, peace and quiet, awesome scenery with sunrises and sunsets to die for. All while still being able to easily take advantage of the area's other attractions. The Goat Pens includes an outdoor events venue that hosts concerts, stargazing parties, festivals and weddings. The Goat Pens also has the only drive-in movie theater in the Big Bend area. Send a text or check The Goat Pens Facebook page (@goatpens) for information and dates of events. The Goat Pens of Cigar Springs Ranch is a beautiful part of the ranch. It is well known for its scenery and unique topography. The Goat Pens served as a set location for many westerns filmed during the 1980's and 90's. Remarkable beauty, easy access, centrally located, seclusion, peace and quiet. All add up to an unforgettable vacation experience. **New This Winter** Rachel Wey Ranch Petting Zoo and Pony Rides Please contact us about hours and availibilty Rachel.wey.ranch @faceboook.com-
from 
$40
 / night
96%
(992)

Paisano Azul Ranch

11 sites · RVs, Tents30 acres · Study Butte, TX
Paisano Azul Ranch is on 30 acres located by Terlingua Creek. The property is just minutes from the Terlingua Ghost Town and a short 3 mile drive to the Big Bend National park. Come pitch your tent or park your camper amid the peaceful desert hillside with views of plateaus that lead to the Chisos Mountains in Big Bend National Park. There is a fire pit on site for you to toast marshmallows or cozy up near, and you can enjoy a bite to eat at the picnic table provided at each site. The picnic tables are placed beneath shade sails. There are two nice and new desert tan flushing Porta-Potties on-site, as well as showers for guests to use. These come in handy after a long day hiking. We hope you'll enjoy the beautiful open sky sunsets, sunrises, and stargazing as much as we do. We are located just 3 miles from the entrance to Big Bend National Park. There are plenty of opportunities to get out and explore - you can hike, bike, canoe & kayak, off-road, swim, go horseback riding, visit hot springs, as well as visit restaurants, galleries, and listen to great music in Terlingua. There is something for everyone to feel free to bring the whole family. Additional details to note: - You can stay connected if you'd like to, as cell reception and wifi are both available on our property. Feel free to unplug during your stay though. - Seeing other campers on your trip at the campsite is very standard, as the sites are far enough apart to feel like they are yours, but they are not private. - Potable water is provided on-site. We have an artisan well on property that has been certified as drinkable. It is double filtered to give you the best drinking water. Please feel free to reach out with any questions and we look forward to your stay.
from 
$39
 / night
100%
(111)

The Bus Stop Camp Ground

10 sites · RVs, Tents12 acres · Terlingua, TX
Hello Hipcampers! We welcome you to our relaxing desert getaway, our camp ground sits on 12 acres of beautiful desert scenery inside of a stunning range of mountains. There are countless activities to do around the area and no lack of adventure. Big Bend National Park Horseback Riding Plane Tours ATV Tours River Rafting Hiking Mountain Biking and more!
from 
$20
 / night
98%
(89)

Good Guad Land Co.

5 sites · RVs, Tents50 acres · Dell City, TX
Find extreme solitude and unforgettable views of Guadalupe Peak at this desert escape next to Guadalupe Mountains National Park! This is choose-your-own-adventure camping. The terrain is rugged, and the dust and wind blow some nights. Once you're here, there are zero amenities (other than picnic tables). If this sounds fine — you don't mind roughing it — you'll be sleeping under the stars at the foot of West Texas' tallest mountain range. And who else can say they've done that? Distance to nearby attractions: Guadalupe Mountains National Park Visitor Center, 11 miles; Black River Recreation Area, 42 miles; Carlsbad Caverns National Park Visitor Center, 52 miles Distance from nearby towns: Dell City, 34 miles; Van Horn, 56 miles; Carlsbad, 65 miles; El Paso, 104 miles
from 
$30
 / night
99%
(321)

Lynn y B's land

28 sites · Lodging, RVs, Tents80 acres · Terlingua, TX
    
from 
$15
 / night
93%
(14)

Rough Run Creek Campground

44 sites · RVs, Tents10 acres · Study Butte, TX
The name says it all! 'Rough Run Creek Campground: is conveniently located downtown Study-Butte 1000 feet West of Cottonwood General Store. Just 2 miles before the western entrance to Big Bend National Park We have 10 acres of room for tent camping and boondock RV camping-only spots in the roadside spot in downtown Study-Butte Texas. Come and stay near the Big Bend National Park! An intimate campsite (not too far off the grid) A campground just outside Big Bend National Park where you can relax and recharge. Short walk to Cottonwood grocery ONLY 1000 FEET TO WALK East crossing over the bridge to mile marker 538 just 1000 feet walking distance from Rough Run Creek Bridge to Cottonwood grocery store and supply. The camping area is about one mile past the intersection of Highway TX-170 and TX-118 approximately one mile South on the left at the Rough Run Creek Campground. Heading only 3 miles further to the gateway into Big Bend National Park, Texas at the Western entrance following on State Highway TX-118 South. Big Bend State Park is to the West on Highway TX-170 approximately 29 miles from Rough Run Creek Bridge past the town of Terlingua, Texas 79852 Rough Run Creek Bridge Camping 53737 TX-118, Study Butte, Texas 79852 - Ten 10 acres of creekfront property This campground is a roadside camping area, directly on Highway TX-118 at the Southeast end of Rough Run Creek Bridge On the East side of the highway. Enter the property between the Rough Run Creek Bridge and the large black mailbox which also marks the South property line of the camping area. The South property line runs 800' feet deep from the roadside of highway TX-118 along the creek bed of Rough Run Creek. At the East end of the campground, you will find an old camper shell near the Southeast end of the campground and the property corner. There are 10 acres in the "dispersed" #BYO everything camping area, #BYO Sleeping bags, #BYO Tent Shades, and #BYO Gas grills, unfortunately, for now, you have to #BYO toilet. Rough Run Creek Bridge camping area includes the creek bed itself, with beachfront camping. The best location to stage an early morning hiking trip from locations for campers visiting Big Bend National Park which is only 2 miles away. Please leave nothing but your tracks when camping or leaving the area for the day. Each night campers must make bookings by 11:00 AM for check-in and out on a ticketed day pass. For showers and bathroom facilities, we recommend the bathroom showers provided at the Big Bend Motor Inn where they have coin-operated shower facilities for visiting tourists. If you need to dump any trash the Big Bend Motor Store and gas station will let you pay $5.00 to use their dumpsters. Please honor the BURN BAN (no open fires). Propane cooking stoves are okay.
from 
$30
 / night
Booked 10 times

Mel's Place

2 sites · Lodging20 acres · Study Butte, TX
Mel's Place has been a favorite camp spot for many since we opened 5 years ago. Feels secluded and remote, yet only a mile or so from everything you might need and only 5 miles to the national park west (Maverick) entrance. 5 miles to the lively ghost town ofTerlingua with some great bars and restraunts. The views from camp are stunning with breathtaking sunrises over the Chisos mountains. Sunsets aren't too shabby either. We are an adults only retreat and hope to provide you the peaceful solitude with breathtaking stargazing you need to renew your spirit!! We are within a few miles of nearly all the local outfitters for your river trips, Jeep or ATV tours, etc. Come make memories!
from 
$30
 / night
97%
(278)

Tierra del Sol Basecamp

6 sites · RVs, Tents40 acres · Alpine, TX
The Tierra del Sol Basecamp is an open desert camping area located within Terlingua Ranch, 3 miles off of Hwy 118, 19 miles north of Study Butte and 22 miles to the entrance to Big Bend National Park. This region of far west Texas is well known for its remote ruggedness and beauty rapidly becoming the go-to place for those wanting to get away from it all, without having to spend a fortune to do it. It’s one of the last frontiers of North America and One of the only two National Parks in Texas. The Basecamp will reside on the 40 acre property. In the center is an area of approximately 6 acres flat, with rising limestone ridge lines to the east and west, open skyline to south with a view of Bofecillos Mountains, an area characterized by volcanic deposits of lava and ash-flow tuff and sedimentary deposits of conglomerates and sandstones. The four mountain tops; Packsaddle, Hen Egg, Panther and Agua Fria Mountains provide an amazing view during the day and at night, breathtaking night time views of the Milky Way and the multitudes of stars to gaze upon unlike any other place in North America. The morning sunrise over the eastern mesa brings its own spectacular views. Surrounding the 40 acres are many things of archaeological wonder. A Rock Hounds dream of minerals, stones and fossilized prehistoric microorganisms, as well as, the potential of finding the fossils of large prehistoric aquatic mammals. Yes, you are free to take a small sample of the thousands of quartz and calcite stones found in huge abundance. As you come to then end of Mailbox Rd., you'll see a residence to your left. This is "The Field Lab", owned by the well know sustainable engineer John Wells. If you'd like to pay him a visit, please contact him in advance.
from 
$25
 / night
96%
(13)

Puppy Paradise- Eclipse Viewing!

22 sites · RVs, Tents30 acres · Florence, TX
Puppy Paradise is a Dog forward recreation space. Our two camp hosts, Joannie and James, are working towards improving the facilities each day to help support dog partners who like to recreate with their dogs off leash in a predictable environment. In addition to a comfortable campsite, there are some 30 acres of desert forest, wild clay harvesting and ancient pottery firing, restorative agriculture, and no light pollution, making for a nature-focused experience both day and night. We are in the path of totality for the solar eclipse, so join us for this special day! Puppy Paradise is here are several downtown areas within 15-20 minutes of the campsite. Salado is our home town and it's a welcoming space especially around the Barrow Brewery and Salado creed where they often have outdoor music in a park setting with several local food vendors. We are central to North Austin and about 50 minutes outside of Austin city center.
from 
$15
 / night
100%
(3)

Mountain View Lodge

3 sites · RVs, Tents7 acres · Fort Davis, TX
Formerly Mountain Trails Lodge, our property features stunning sunrises and sunsets, wildlife watching, and amazing dark skies viewing. And on April 8, you join us for solar eclipse viewing. We'll have eclipse glasses for our guests. We offer tent campsites and one RV site with electricity and water available, along with access to a restroom with shower and amenities, our pavilion with a gas grill and grilling tools, a fridge, ice, and picnic tables. We also have cabins for rent, visible on our website mountainviewlodgetx.com. We have seven acres convenient to many attractions, including McDonald Observatory, Fort Davis National Historic Site, Davis Mountains State Park, the Chihuahuan Desert Research Center, a 75-mile scenic loop, and more. Marfa, TX, a widely recognized community of world-renowned artists, is just a 20-minute drive away. Alpine, TX is also only 20 minutes away with more amenities and medical care facilities. We are located in a Dark Skies Reserve with spectacular night viewing of stars and the Milky Way, even without a telescope!
from 
$39
 / night
91%
(95)

Fort Clark Springs

11 sites · Tents2700 acres · Brackettville, TX
Fort Clark began as a US Army Post in 1852; built beside the Las Moras Springs, to defend settlers along the Pecos Trail.  In service until 1947, Fort Clark was a cavalry fort and home of the famed Black Seminole Indian Scouts; as well as every historic Buffalo Soldier regiment in the US Army.  During WWII, it was headquarters for the 2nd Cavalry Division and it housed more than 3000 German POWs.  The old Army Guardhouse is now a museum. MOVIE BUFFS:  Movies filmed on the fort and in the surrounding area include:  The Alamo (John Wayne), Lonesome Dove, Streets of Laredo, The Good Old Boys, Barbarossa, Arrowhead & more!Fort Clark Springs is now a 2700 acre leisure living community bordering US Hwy 90 at Brackettville, Texas; approximately 140 miles due west of San Antonio, Texas.The Fort sits at the head of the Las Moras Spring which has been generating millions of gallons of pure, cold sparkling water for over 12,000 years.  It also sits on a portion of the Great Comanche War Trail between Naciamento, Mexico and Oklahoma.  The spring has always been a lifeline for a multitude of cultures and wildlife.  Some of these include a number of different tribes, buffalo, deep antelope and large herds of native mustangs.  The spring forms a stunning little valley and creates a natural habitat that allows native semi-tropical vendure and the finest specimens of Live Oak, Pecans and White Oak trees to flourish.  Today, it also home to large herds of axis and whitetail deer, turkey, javelinas, feral hogs and is a birders' paradise as well; as it sits on the western migratory bird path.Learn more about this land:Pitch your tent along the Las Moras Creek under 150+ year old oak trees - exactly where the famed Black Seminole Indian Scouts lived and rode with the US Cavalry; defending settlers and travelers from Comanche along the Pecos Trail. Explore Fort Clark - home to every historic buffalo soldier regiment in the US Army, the Black Seminole Indian Scouts; as well as almost every US cavalry regiment.  After almost 100 years in service, the army post closed (1852 - 1947) and was eventually rehabilitated into a 2700 acre leisure living community, at the edge of West Texas.  Historical markers dot the 21+ miles of hiking/biking trails on the Fort.The original US Army Guardhouse is now a museum; and along with the largest privately owned historic district west of the Mississippi River, it awaits your exploration.  6 State Parks/National Recreation Areas - all within an hour drive - also await you.  Visit the millions of freetail bats at Kickapoo Caverns, the wilds of the Pecos River and Seminole Canyon, tube the Frio River, bass fish at Lake Amistad, explore 21+ miles of hiking trails on the Fort, or just relax by the 3rd largest spring-fed pool in Texas.  (68 degrees year round).  NOTE:  Over 100 movies/TV shows/music videos have been filmed on the fort and in Kinney County including:  The Alamo (John Wayne) , Arrowhead, Two Rode Together, Bandelero, The Good Old Boys and Bad Girls.  Campsites are named after movies made here and in Kinney County.Although located directly next to the RV Park, the campground is separate, with its own bathhouse and has its own vibe of quiet peacefulness.  Axis and whitetail deer walk and graze through the campground year round, as well as large turkey flocks.  Picnic tables, fire rings and shower rooms are also available.Campers may fish the Las Moras Creek (catch & release) with no license needed.  Tent camping here at Fort Clark is very relaxed with large unstructured campsites and a very peaceful relaxed feel to the entire campground.
from 
$15
 / night
100%
(5)

Terlingua Ranch Primitive Camp

4 sites · RVs, Tents425 acres · Alpine, TX
Terlingua Ranch is 192,000 acres of desert and mountains between Big Bend National Park and Big Bend Ranch State Park in far SW Texas. Our campsites are in the area of the Terlingua Ranch Lodge, which features a swimming pool, cafe, laundry, bathhouse, disc golf course, access to hiking trails, and other amenities. Terlingua Ranch is the perfect venue for your basecamp to Big Bend adventures, family reunions, and myriad other activities in the area.
from 
$18
 / night

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Desert camping in Texas with hiking guide

Overview

They say everything’s bigger in the Lone Star State, and that includes the variety of options for campers, whether you're looking for an RV park, tent camping, or a primitive camping backcountry adventure. Beat the summer heat on sandy Gulf beaches, or head inland to the arid deserts of Big Bend Country in winter for some of the nation’s darkest skies and best nighttime views. Spring and autumn offer the best weather for wine tasting in Texas Hill Country, hiking the canyons of the Panhandle, or paddling the bald cypress forests of the Texas Pine Curtain.

Big Bend Country

Remote West Texas boasts some of the most pristine landscapes in the state. Explore the hiking trails of Guadalupe Mountains and Big Bend national parks, raft through narrow canyons along the Rio Grande River, go rock climbing in Hueco Tanks State Park near El Paso, or hit the dunes in Monahans Sandhills State Park. The quirky communities of Marfa, Terlingua, and Marathon serve as convenient gateways to desert adventure.

Texas Hill Country

Known for its wineries, whiskey distilleries, swimming holes, and rich German heritage, the rolling hills of this central Texas region extend between Austin and San Antonio, with plenty of small towns to explore along the way. Springtime brings bluebonnets to the roadsides of the region. In fall, head to Lost Maples State Park for some of the state’s best leaf peeping. Soak up panoramic views from Enchanted Rock, venture deep into the Caverns of Sonora or the Cave Without a Name, or take a leisurely float along the Guadalupe River.

Gulf Coast

The Texas Gulf Coast stretches for more than 600 miles along the shores of the Gulf of Mexico and includes the Padre Island National Seashore. Sun seekers will find plenty of sandy beaches with warm Gulf waters (plus opportunities for beach camping), while the natural areas along the coast feature some of the best birdwatching in the nation. Houston, Galveston, South Padre Island, and Corpus Christi are among the most popular areas to stay.

Panhandle

The plains of the Texas Panhandle comprise one of the largest regions in the state. Here you’ll find America’s second-largest canyon within Palo Duro Canyon State Park, as well as the iconic Cadillac Ranch car sculpture along road trip-worthy Route 66.

Pine Curtain

Lakes, forests, and swamps dominate the landscape of the lesser-known Piney Woods of East Texas. Step back in time at Mission Tejas State Park, straddle the state line in Texarkana, pitch a tent among the gargantuan pines of Daingerfield, or make the 835-mile camping trip along the Texas Forest Trail. If you want to get out on the water, it's hard to beat a kayak in Caddo Lake State Park.

Prairies and Lakes

This region sweeps down through the center of the state from the Dallas-Fort Worth area to Waco, Bryan, and College Station (home of Texas A&M University). You don’t have to drive far to find a lakeside campground or on-the-water activity, thanks to the area’s 17 Texas state parks and one national wildlife refuge.

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