Updated: Apr 21, 2022
Texas is the second largest state but has only two national parks.
California has the most with nine, followed by Alaska with eight, Utah with five, and Colorado with four. The newest national park is New River Gorge in West Virginia for a total of 63 national parks.
In a nutshell - this is what is available to every US citizen and those visiting the US:
"National Park System - 84 million acres (55 million in Alaska): 397 areas including National Parks, monuments, battlefields, military parks, historical parks, historic sites, lakeshores, seashores, recreation areas, scenic rivers and trails, and the White House."
"U.S. Forest Service - 193 million acres: 155 National Forests, 20 National Grasslands, 1 National Tallgrass Prairie."
Big Bend National Park, Texas
We parked the rig in Alpine, Texas and drove the jeep to Big Bend. We decided to hike the popular Lost Mine Trail which ascends 1100 feet in 2.5 miles. It is popular for good reason, the views are spectacular. The date was November 24th and the weather was perfect - 70 degrees and sunny.
On our way out of the park there was a black bear walking in the road. Not a good video, I wasn't quick enough.
Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas
We visited this park on the same day that we toured the Carlsbad Caverns. Guadalupe is in the small western section of Texas and only 25 miles from the Caverns in southern New Mexico. We spent a short amount of time in Guadalupe at the end of the day, enough to be able to put a checkmark on our list.