Upper Rio Grande Loop
Upper Rio Grande Loop map
- Presidio Visitor Convention Bureau, 432-299-3517, www.cityofpresidio.com
- Marfa Chamber of Commerce, 800-650-9696, www.marfacc.com
The dirt road to Chinati Hot Springs can be accessed from either FM 170 just north of Ruidosa or off the Pinto Canyon Road east of Ruidosa. Follow the signs to the end of the road and the hot springs, but be careful during the rainy season as dry arroyos can flood in just a few minutes.
Located along a creek drainage in the foothills of the Chinati Mountains the site includes a combination of desert-scrub and riparian habitat. Scattered large cottonwood, willow, and hackberry trees provide good cover for a variety of bird species, including some rarities.
GPS: 30° 2' 18.16" N, 104° 35' 59.13" W
5 miles east of Presidio on Hwy 170.
This is a good site to observe herons, waterfowl, swallows and shorebirds. With its unique habitat, almost anything can show up at this site. River access to Rio Grande. Adjacent to RV park and golf course. Bird sanctuary and wetland in process of development.
432-229-2992 or 432-229-3632
GPS: 29° 32' 22.77" N, 104° 18' 38.50" W
From Presidio, travel 4 miles southeast on FM 170 to the park entrance on the right.
Fort Leaton State Historic Site is situated on a floodplain terrace overlooking the Rio Grande. Common birds of the Chihuahuan Desert can easily be seen on the premises, such as Roadrunner, White-winged Dove and Black-throated Sparrow. The site includes a nature trail that traverses both Chihuahuan Desert scrub and riparian habitats. Two species particularly sought-after by birders in the Big Bend can be observed at Fort Leaton: Gambel's Quail and Crissal Thrasher. Golden-fronted Woodpecker, confined only to a few specialized habitats in the region, can be found in the tall cottonwoods lining the riverbank.
GPS: 29° 32' 34.47" N, 104° 19' 30.04" W