Big Bend
Chinati Mountains State Natural Area
Chinati Mountains State Natural Area Information:
TPWD acquired this 38,137 acre SNA from the Richard King Mellon Foundation in 1996. It is the second largest State Park in Texas, second to Big Bend Ranch State Park. The SNA is located on the west side of the high peaks of the Chinati Mountain Range, a small mountain range created by a volcanic eruption over 35 million years ago. The SNA extends from the desert floor to Sierra Pardo Peak, the highest mountain peak, but does not include ridgeline of the high Chinati range. Humans occupied the mountains and surrounding area for over 8,000 years, as evidenced by the pictographs (rock paintings) and petroglyphs (rock carvings). The park is gorgeous and has three particularly beautiful sites. Plant life consists of mixed grasslands and mixed desert scrub in the low land, and gray oak trees and tall grass in the upper reaches of the park. Wildlife is typical of the Big Bend area and includes 10 species of bats, Nelson’s pocket mouse, white-tailed and mule deer, bobcats, and mountain lions. The gray checkered whiptail lizard thrives here and is only found in a few other places. Birds are those normally found in the area. Lack of state park funds is preventing this state natural area from opening to the general public, though access has been available to volunteers and to the public on a limited basis through tours provided by Charlie Angell of Angell Expeditions who has park access and access to the five reservable cabins. TPWD’s park masterplan should be complete by 2018, but TPWD still needs to purchase land to provide access to the park from FM 170. RR 281 and Pinto Canyon Road pass through the Chinati Mountains, connecting Ruidosa, Texas with Marfa, Texas. Chianti peak is not located in the SNA. The SNA is located 20 miles north of Presidio, Texas, south of Pinto Canyon Road. Angell Expeditions: (432) 229-3713. (305) 336-2787.  Email Angell Expeditions   Mammals List & Chinati Mountains SNA Map
Birding - Far West Texas Birding Wildlife Trail:
Big Bend Loop:   Terlingua, Lajitas, Presidio, Study Butte, Big Bend Ranch SP, Big Bend National Park
Upper Rio Grande Loop:   Ruidosa, Presidio
Texas Birds Checklist
Bird Checklist for West Texas Trans-Pecos
Big Bend Ranch State Park Bird Checklist
Big Bend National Park Bird Checklist

Angell Expeditions:
They offer Rio Grande River raft trips, tours of the Chianti Mountains State Natural Area, mountain biking, hiking and jeep tours, and camping. Best contact method is by land line phone or email, as cell phone reception is limited. (432) 229-3713. (432) 299-3713. Cell: (305) 336-2787.  Email