Bush Mountain, Guadalupe Mountains National Park, TX

At eight thousand feet in Guadalupe Mountains, the Texan desert seemingly stretches forever.
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At eight thousand feet in Guadalupe Mountains, the Texan desert seemingly stretches forever.
Guadalupe Mountains National Park

Rest under the shade of dry trees atop Bush Mountain. Watch the local lizards and buzzards make a living as you reward yourself with the views from high above the desert floor. Photo by Charlie Llewellin / Flickr

Thank goodness for 8,740-foot Guadalupe Peak: Hikers flock to the state high point, leaving nearby 8,615-foot Bush Mountian's see-forever slopes much quieter. Nab a free permit for the Bush Mountain campsite, then take the Tejas and Bush Mountain Trails 5.9 miles to the peak's western escarpment. With its wide-open views over the Salt Flats, Patterson Hills, and dog Canyon, you won't even miss those 125 feet. Info http://nps.gov/gumo