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Hiking in the Unspoiled Beauty of Big Bend

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Program #11958RJ

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6 Days | 5 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Moderately Challenging (Variable by Program Date)
Road Scholar has thousands of educational adventures to choose from. A good way to narrow down our list is to browse our collection of "Most Popular" programs.
See all of our Most Popular programs.
Love to learn in a small-group setting? This collection of programs has at most 10-24 participants.
See our Small Group programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. Minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding, and rewarding, programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.
Lois from Williamsburg, MI Number of programs attended: 16
Date attended: 11/15/15 - 11/20/15
The hiking was great, as was the scenery. Both guides, Dean and Randy, were knowledgeable and respectful of everyone's abilities. The casitas at Far Flung were nice, with good lighting. Food was poor compared to other RS programs we have done. We didn't starve, but it seemed that dinners and breakfasts were not nearly as nutritious or plentiful as they have been on other hiking trips we have done. Otherwise, the trip was fun and interesting.

Ann from Scottsdale, AZ Number of programs attended: 0
Date attended: 11/15/15 - 11/20/15
I would recommend this trip!

Marilyn from Bellevue, WA Number of programs attended: 0
Date attended: 11/15/15 - 11/20/15
Great, fun guides. Great hikes through beautiful country. Learned a lot about the history of the area and contemporary life around Big Bend, West Texas.

Diane from Northbrook, IL Number of programs attended: 23
Date attended: 11/08/15 - 11/13/15
Big Bend is a very interesting area - desert, mountains, Rio Grande. Far Flung Outdoor Center was good. Adana and Thomas, our leaders, were excellent.

Carol from Fort Myers, FL Number of programs attended: 10
Date attended: 11/08/15 - 11/13/15
Big Bend Park is so different from any of the others in the National Park system. It is a BIG diverse area - so interesting and exciting to hike the trails.

Angie from Tallahassee, FL Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 11/08/15 - 11/13/15
My third Road Scholar trip. My first one choosing moderately challenging. Was easy for me. I will stick to challenging courses, until I age to the point of needing lesser so ones. Still it was a packed day and beautiful country, great guides, good food. Lodging was different, had my own casita which was furnished nicely and functional.

donald from cattaraugus, NY Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 11/08/15 - 11/13/15
only my third trip but definitely the best. a wonderful place to visit and the staff was simply super

Roy from Saugatuck, MI Number of programs attended: 13
Date attended: 02/15/15 - 02/20/15
Wonderful part of the country to visit. Scenery is spectacular. A hidden gem.

Marian from Sagamore Hills, OH Number of programs attended: 5
Date attended: 02/15/15 - 02/20/15
Great trip, although it took 4 hours to get there from Midland, it was worth the drive. It drizzled a little the first day of this adventure and the whole desert came alive for the rest of the trip. The geology of the area is fascinating, the Santa Elena canyon is not to be missed. Be sure to sit with your feet in the Rio Grand River and the warm water from the hot springs pouring over your shoulders when you visit the Hot springs. Great trip!

Laurie from Hillsborough, CA Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 02/15/15 - 02/20/15
Guides were helpful and enhanced my appreciation of Big Bend, with info on history, geology, plant life and just fun stories. Big Bend is vast and stunning, with many great hiking options.

Ferol from Granite Bay, CA Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 02/08/15 - 02/13/15
This was a great trip in a wonderful, isolated national park. The hikes were very beautiful and not challenging. Adana Martinez and Dean Griffith were excellent, always informative and professional. I recommend this trip!

Bill from wylie, TX Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 02/08/15 - 02/13/15
Big Bend is a very special place, and Road Scholar/and their affilates are the best partners to experience this large-880,000 acre 5 climate zone and potentially dangerous park. The personal care and education these team players share is unparalled. If beautiful landscape,topography,exciting and challenging hikes are your style this is a must do.

Bob from Duluth, MN Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 02/01/15 - 02/06/15
We made friends that we expect to keep in touch with after the program. Group Leader Erin set a tone with the group that made this happen. Her knowledge, and skill at sharing her extensive knowledge of Big Bend National Park natural history and human history made this trip a great experience for us.

Eileen from Ann Arbor, MI Number of programs attended: 25
Date attended: 01/25/15 - 01/30/15
Big Bend National Park is definitely not easy to get to (most of a day flying from the Midwest, followed by a 4 or 5 hour drive the next day), but this program made all the travel more than worthwhile. The program is very well planned, with the hikes, meals, van rides, and educational talks perfectly coordinated. The casitas at Far Flung Outdoor Center are attractive and very comfortable, the meals were very good and included a variety of fun local dining options, and both guides were enthusiastic and extremely knowledgable. With only 12 participants, we quickly got to know each other and had fun traveling and hiking together. Each of the four days of hiking took us to a different area of this vast park. including beautiful deserts, canyons of the Rio Grande, high cliffs that look down on the river, a natural historic hot springs (bring your suit!), and a spectacular viewpoint at the end of a trail that climbs through the piñon pines and oak trees. The "Moderately Challenging" description is accurate, as are the descriptions on the web site and the printed materials. This is an excellent Road Scholar program! Please email me at emknesper@gmail.com if you have questions, and check out our pictures at https://bigbendroadscholarjan2015.shutterfly.com.

Stanley from El Paso, TX Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 01/25/15 - 01/30/15
The Big Bend hike activity was very memorable. Chris (Gypsy) and Erica as program guides were just outstanding. My fellow participants were great too. The accomodations were quite a treat. I strongly recommend this trip to anyone who want to experience a part of the Southwest that is is uniquely beautiful.

Glenn from Bronx, NY Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 12/14/14 - 12/19/14
Big Bend National Park is special

Marguerite from Harlingen, TX Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 12/14/14 - 12/19/14
RoadScholar teamed up with Far Flung Outdoor Center to create a unique hiking experience at one of Texas' most diverse national parks. The hike leaders were knowledgeable and personable, the accommodations were delightful, and Big Bend is the type place to experience anew again and again.

Bruce from Portland, OR Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 12/14/14 - 12/19/14
If you like seeing expansive landscapes, plants blooming in December, hidden cactus, a range of flatland and non-so-flatland hikes, try Big Bend National Park in the winter. For those who can stay up, the night sky is spectacular, or so I am told.

Jeffrey from West Hartford, CT Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 12/14/14 - 12/19/14
Terrific trip in every way. The leaders, Chris and Erica, were outstanding, Far Flung Outdoors Center has great accommodations, and Big Bend N.P. is fantastic! Just superb!

Robert from Newburyport, MA Number of programs attended: 6
Date attended: 11/30/14 - 12/05/14
Great program. Both Erica and Dean were exceptionally knowledgeable, enthusiastic, and professional with overlapping but complementary talents and areas of expertise.

Sheila from Sun City Center, FL Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 11/30/14 - 12/05/14
the hike was described accurately, sort of! while it was physically doable, it may, at times, be somewhat outside of one's "comfort zone". but it certainly increases your confidence AFTER completing the task!!!

Jesmin from Voorhees, NJ Number of programs attended: 6
Date attended: 12/07/14 - 12/12/14
This was the Level 5(challenging) hike option. I normally hike on minimal inclines at sea level, and I could not have done this hike without the encouragement of Thomas up front, and the support of Erin (bringing up the rear). They are wonderful guides and the hikes were perfect - challenging, but doable. I strongly recommend this trip.

Rosemarie from Burlington, VT Number of programs attended: 9
Date attended: 12/07/14 - 12/12/14
Guides Erin and Thomas are exceptionally good and passionate about the area and its people. Their gift for story telling made listening a great pleasure.

Ellen from Silver Spring, MD Number of programs attended: 8
Date attended: 12/07/14 - 12/12/14
This is an awesome trip. Big Bend is a magnificent park with new vistas at every turn. Hikes were great - lived up to the challenge of "challenging" and scheduled very well to prepare us for the big ones. The casitas at Far Flung are "5 star" and breakfasts, lunches, and dinners there top rate. Our guides, Erin and Thomas were exceptional.

Rhoda from Arlington, VA Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 11/16/14 - 11/21/14
Terrific trip. The hikes are varied and interesting; challenging but doable. (The leaders also can accommodate those who want to do fewer miles.) The logistics are carefully thought out and executed. Be in shape and expect uneven terrain -- that's just the way Big Bend is.

Larry from Johnstown, PA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 11/02/14 - 11/07/14
The plant diversity in the desert was amazing. Learned much about geology also, a subject that I have little interest in. Thomas was quite good in stimulating that interest.

Cassandra from Richmond, VA Number of programs attended: 7
Date attended: 02/16/14 - 02/21/14
This hiking trip should not be missed. Big Bend is remote but the destination is a reward and the drive becomes more beautiful each mile. Patrick and Erika were exceptional guides. Their passion for the area, breadth of knowledge, thorough EMT training (which was put to the test), and delightful personalities made the unspoiled Big Bend a once in a lifetime memory. Far Flung Outdoor Center had all the comforts of home:comfort, clean,well maintained, friendly and delicious food.

Marsha from Fairport, NY Number of programs attended: 11
Date attended: 02/02/14 - 02/07/14
Highly recommend this hiking trip. Big Bend is remote so be prepared for a long drive to get there. Our guides, Adana, Billy, and Erin were exceptional - knowledgeable, caring, well prepared,interesting, and good leaders. Group was well matched in terms of physical ability. We hiked roughly 35 miles in 4 days and saw a wide variety of magnificent scenery.

Jeffrey from Thousand Oaks, CA Number of programs attended: 9
Date attended: 02/09/14 - 02/14/14
If you like an active vacation in the "unspoiled" outdoors in a unique ecosystem, then consider the adventure to Big Bend National Park, Texas.

Mimi from Peru, IN Number of programs attended: 14
Date attended: 01/19/14 - 01/24/14
The Big Bend program is full of surprises. The casitas are a real treat, clean and functional with frig and microwave. We loved sitting on our porch in big rocking chairs. The town of Terlingua is unique and we enjoyed the diverse meal options and cute restaurants. The park is magnificent, especially the canyons and mountains. All of the staff was exceptional, especially Chris and Erica. We strongly recommend this trip. It was not overly difficult. Mimi and Jim Berkshire

Mary from Hingham, MA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 02/02/14 - 02/07/14
A long drive from the airport, but very much worth it. Magnificent scenery and a deep, deep quiet.

John from Morrison, CO Number of programs attended: 45
Date attended: 01/26/14 - 01/31/14
Out of the way in "far" West Texas, Big Bend is unique, partnering river, desert, forest, peaks, mesas, antiquities. The Far Flung casita experience was wonderful.
We trekked 39.5 miles in 4 days! Small group of 10, out of nearly 50rograms with E'hostel/RS, one of the top three.

Kathleen from Spring Hill, FL Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 01/26/14 - 01/31/14
This is a fantastic program if you are up for both a physical and mental challenge in a wild and beautiful place! The trip leaders, Erin and Patrick, were wonderful! I loved my Casita and experienced a beautiful sunrise from the porch every morning. I learned a lot about the area - cultural and natural history. You will be outdoors all day for 4 days - glorious!

Lynne from Metuchen, NJ Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 10/27/13 - 11/01/13
“Hiking the Unspoiled Beauty of the Big Bend” with accommodations at Chisos Mountain Lodge provides a superb hiking experience with an opportunity to learn about desert, river and mountain ecology in this remote special national park in Texas. Bravo!

Christine from Medford, NJ Number of programs attended: 6
Date attended: 12/08/13 - 12/13/13
This was a great hiking program. High desert is very different to other deserts we have hiked, and there were so many different micro climes that we visited. We had only 11 hikers in our group, and that made it much easier to get to know the other participants. We were lucky, too, that the group had self-assessed pretty well for hiking ability. However, this was a Moderately Challenging program, which meant the pace was never so fast that keeping up was a problem. Our accommodations at Far Flung were very comfortable. As noted earlier, the wifi can be very spotty, dropping in and out. This is a very isolated spot, which also means the food is less than gourmet. But we were well-nourished for our hikes. If you like strong coffee, bring your own! Our guides were Chris and Tim, and they did a great job in every way. Be aware that the airports are either 4 or 5 hours away by car. And be prepared for Border Patrol stops along the way.

John from Austin, TX Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 12/01/13 - 12/06/13
Great program. Enjoyed it immensely. My only complaint is despite the Far Flung accomodation description saying it has wifi internet, there was no internet access available.

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Uploaded By: Suzanne
Uploaded By: Suzanne

"Ice Covering Trees" Uploaded By: Peter

"Ice Covering Trees" Uploaded By: Peter

"Ice on Prickly Pear Cactus" Uploaded By: Peter

"Hiking the Lost Mine Trail in Freezing Fog" Uploaded By: Peter

"Group of hikers in Big Bend" Uploaded By: Glen

"Lost Mine Trail in Chisos Basin" Uploaded By: Sheila

Uploaded By: Glen

"Hot Springs Canyon 2012" Uploaded By: Jonathan

"December 2012 Group at the Lost Mine Trainhead" Uploaded By: Jonathan

"Lost Mine Trailhead 12-6-2012" Uploaded By: Jonathan

"Hiking into Santa Elena Canyon 12-4-2012" Uploaded By: Jonathan

"Hiking into Santa Elena Canyon 12-4-2012" Uploaded By: Jonathan

"Desert Marigolds in Grapevine Hills" Uploaded By: Esther

"The Balanced Rock, from the "other" side." Uploaded By: Esther

"Blooming rock cactus on the Hot Springs trail." Uploaded By: Esther

"Hiking, Big Bend National Park" Uploaded By: Ronald Attended: 01/17/11 - 01/22/11

"The Window, Big Bend National Park" Uploaded By: Ronald Attended: 01/17/11 - 01/22/11

"Rio Grande River as seen from Santa Elena Canyon" Uploaded By: Ronald Attended: 01/17/11 - 01/22/11

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Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

at no additional cost on this date ...
5 nights of accommodations
14 meals: 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 5 dinners
2 Expert-led lectures
8 Field trips
1 Performances


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