Southwestern Texas has a reputation for getting downright toasty during summer months, and Big Bend National Park is no exception. But it’s not all desert heat come those long lazy days of summer, nor is a little winter snow impossible come January. In fact, the weather in this expansive national park just might surprise you almost as much as the terrain variety, which ranges from mountains to desert via meandering river. In fact, except for a couple of particularly hot months, there’s really not a bad time to visit this diverse region, though you’ll always want to pack in plenty of water and lots of sunscreen.
Summer is, of course, the hot potato, in more ways than one. Surprisingly, it’s not July and August that top the heat index charts, but May and June. However, even with the heat on the desert floor you might just find conditions pleasant if you venture up to high elevations where it can be as much as 20 degrees cooler. Watch for rain showers from July through October to cool things off even further.
If you’re looking for the best season to visit, autumn is a good pick. October and November range from about 68 to 78 degrees during the day, cooling off just enough to get cozy at night. Best of all, if there’s been enough summer rain you can catch a spectacular wildflower show late summer and early fall.
Winter usually stays fairly mild, with temperatures in the low 60’s during the day. Don’t forget, however, that it cools off significantly the higher up you go into the mountains and keep an eye on the weather forecast if you’re planning a sojourn into the backcountry. Once in a blue moon it does get downright cold in these parts and there may be the occasional dusting of snow - for the avid photographer, a very good reason to plan a winter visit.
Spring brings it’s own display of wildflowers, along with several busy weeks at the end of March when Spring Break crowds descend. On cooler days, Boquillas Hot Springs is a popular place to hang, though if the river’s running high it might disappear temporarily.
So really, Big Bend National Park is fine place to spend a few vacation days, whether they fall in January or July.