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Outstanding hike in the Fall, great overnighter.

Me and my crew with homemade gaiters at Dog Canyon (gaiters lasted all of 1/4 mile)
Me and my crew with homemade gaiters at Dog Canyon (gaiters lasted all of 1/4 mile)
Sorry for the blurry image...This is the trailhead at Dog Canyon Campground. GREAT place to tent camp; lots of solitude and shade; flush toilets and water available.
User: aggiehiker92 - 9/3/2006

Location: McKittrick Canyon Trail

Rating:
Difficulty:  Solitude:
Miles Hiked: 15.00 Miles  Elapsed Time: N/A

Comments: I took my three older boys (12,8,6) on their first overnight backpack experience. What an experience it was!!! The weather was wet for 2-3 days prior, so when the clouds lifted, it made for very nice hiking weather. We started at Dog Canyon Campground and hiked to McKitterick Canyon Visitor Center. Nothing fun about lugging 30 lbs of water uphill, but the view was worth it. We steadily climbed some 1900 feet to the Mckitterick Ridge Campground, then the next morning, decended into the canyon RAPIDLY (2300 feet in 4 miles) on switchbacks like no other I've seen. Glad to do it downhill. Great views!!! The trick to this hike is to arrange for transportation at the pickup site. Guadalupe Mountains National Park is truly a jewell in an otherwise harsh environment. The biggest hinderence is the lack of water in the backcountry, but oftentimes McKitterick Creek is running in the back parts of the canyon. This is a VERY limited resource, so use it sparingly and always filter or treat it.

Log Photos:
Me and my crew with homemade gaiters at Dog Canyon (gaiters lasted all of 1/4 mile)
Me and my crew with homemade gaiters at Dog Canyon (gaiters lasted all of 1/4 mile)
Well needed rest at Pratt Lodge
Well needed rest at Pratt Lodge
View from on top
View from on top

Area around McKittrick Canyon Trail

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Topo maps provided by MyTopo.com (purchase)

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As the first and only comprehensive hiking guide to all 130 miles of trails in these two national parks, this book features Carlsbad's improved above-ground hiking trail system as well as routes in the caverns and Guadalupe's wild backcountry. It also includes written trail descriptions, elevation charts, photos, and detailed topographic maps. Hiking Carlsbad Caverns and Guadalupe Mountains National Park is packed with all the information you need to plan your next trip in these two uncrowded and remote national parks.