This national park is almost as big as Rhode Island. When you’re traversing Big Bend’s 1252 sq miles, you come to appreciate what ‘big’ really means. It’s a land of incredible diversity, vast enough to allow a lifetime of discovery, yet laced with enough well-placed roads and trails to permit short-term visitors to see a lot in two to three days.

Some of the best hikes depart from Chisos Basin. A challenging favorite is the 9 mile round-trip hike up Emory Peak, the highest point (at 7832 ft) in the park.