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County
El Paso
Region
Big Bend
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Parks
Franklin Mountains Texas State Park
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Franklin Mountains State Park Information:  
This 24,247 acre park is the largest urban park in the United States. It is located completely within the city limits of El Paso in the Northern Chihuahuan Desert. Most of the 23 mile long and 3 mile wide Franklin Mountain range, including North Franklin Mountain, is located within the park boundaries. At 7,192 feet, North Franklin Mountain is the highest point in El Paso. It surpasses nearby Anthony’s Nose by 200 feet. South Franklin Mountain marks the end to the range. It is a good navigation point for hikers because of the antenna located on its summit. This range is the most southern point of the Rockies. Pictographs and mortar pits indicate the presence of people dating back 12,000 years. A trail, located off the North Franklin Peak Trail just past Mundy’s Gap, leads to the ruins of the El Paso Tin Mining and Smelting Company which operated in the mountains from 1909-1915. This is the nation’s only tin mine. In the late 1970s when developers began carving roads into the almost pristine mountains, the Texas Legislature passed a bill authorizing the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department to acquire Franklin Mountains. The land was purchased in 1981, and opened to the public in 1987. The Franklin Mountains Wilderness Coalition offers support to the park. Its initial work to protect the mountains led to the park’s creation. Park entrance and camping fees apply. For more park information read the park brochure and watch the park video.
 
Wyler Aerial Tramway at Franklin Mountains State Park:
The tramway features Swiss made gondolas, and aerial cables crossing 195 acres of rugged mountain on the east side of the Franklin Mountains. The system’s machinery and mechanism may be viewed through a window at the ADA compliant departure area where Wi-Fi is also available. The gondolas transport visitors on a narrated 2,600 feet ride to the top of Ranger Peak (5,632 feet) where visitors will find ADA compliant ramps and paved grounds leading to an observation deck with pay telescopes and 360 degree views of the surrounding countryside and El Paso. Open Fri-Sat, 12 noon-7pm; Sun & major holidays, 10am-5pm; closed Mon-Thu. The tramway is open on major holidays and the days surrounding these holidays. A reasonable fee applies. (915) 566-6622. The parking lot, cacti gardens, restrooms and tramway station are located at 1700 McKinley Avenue, 79930. From IH-10, take U.S. 54 North; exit Fred Wilson Boulevard. Go left on Fred Wilson; it turns into Alabama Street. Follow Alabama to McKinley Avenue; go right on McKinley and drive to the park. Information Brochure  Wyler Aerial Tramway Video 
 
Franklin Mountains State Park, McKelligon Canyon Pavilion & Amphitheatre, 90 Acres:
This beautiful park area is the site of the park headquarters and park store. McKelligon Canyon is surrounded on three sides by dramatic canyon walls. Activities include hiking, picnicking and rock climbing. Amenities include the reservable, ADA compliant 150-300 person capacity McKelligon Canyon Pavilion, individual picnic sites, the 1,503 seat McKelligon Amphitheater with 57 ADA compliant seats, a popular mountain bike and jogging trail, and three parking lots including the ADA compliant amphitheater parking lot. Special climbing areas have been established behind the amphitheater. The 1,500 seat amphitheater hosts concerts and special events. The Amphitheater box office is open on scheduled show days. (915) 564-9138. (915) 534-0600. (800) 351-6024. 1500 McKelligon Canyon Drive, 79930. From the Junction of US-54 and IH-10, take U.S. 54 to the Fred Wilson exit. Turn left (west) on Fred Wilson and proceed up the hill and around the left bend to the McKelligon Canyon Road entrance. Turn right into McKelligon Canyon and proceed into the park.  Email   @ElPasoLive
 
Franklin Mountains State Park Directions:  
The park is located on the north side of El Paso, Texas
 
Access #1 from the west side of El Paso:
From IH-10, take the Canutillo/Trans-Mountain Road exit and drive towards the mountains, approximately 3.8 miles from IH-10.
 
Access #2 from the east side of El Paso:
From U.S. 54, exit on Fred Wilson Road and drive west towards the mountains to the park entrance.
 
Access #3:
This access point is located near the summit of the Transmountain Road (Loop 375); there is a parking lot and two trailheads.