Wildfire burning near Chisos Basin at Big Bend National Park

Flowers bloom along the South Rim at Big Bend National Park in this file photo by Reine Wonite for National Park Service.


Portions of Big Bend National Park remain closed today as fire crews work to put out a wildfire that burned more than 1,000 acres on Monday.

The Chisos Basin, including the Chisos Mountains Lodge and restaurant, the High Chisos Trail Complex, the Outer Mountain Loop (including the Dodson, Juniper Canyon and Blue Creek campsites), and the Glen Springs, Pine Canyon and Juniper Canyon roads and campsites are closed, according to the Big Bend National Park website.

Officials say a lightning strike near the Chisos Mountain area started the Crown Mountain fire on Sunday. The fire grew from about 650 acres Sunday to more than 1,000 acres on Monday. Three fire crews and a helicopter were working to extinguish the blaze, according to a telephone hotline at the park. The fire was considered 60 percent contained Monday evening.

The Odessa-American reported that the Chisos Basin Campground was evacuated so it could be used to stage fire crews and equipment. The lodge and restaurant were closed as a precaution, it reported.

Camping is available at Cottonwood and Rio Grande Village campgrounds and in the backcountry, and the Panther Junction Visitor Center is open as usual. Accommodations are also available in Terlingua, Alpine and Marathon.

A recorded message of current updates on closures is available by calling 432-477-2576. Check here for updates.

Author: Pam LeBlanc

Pam LeBlanc writes about fitness and travel for the Austin American-Statesman. She has worked for the Statesman since 1998 and written her weekly fitness column, Fit City, since 2004.

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