El Capitan (Texas)

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El Capitan
El Capitan 2005.jpg
View from highway 62/180
Elevation 8,064 ft (2,458 m)[1]
Prominence 285 ft (87 m)[2]
Parent peak Guadalupe Peak
Location
El Capitan is located in Texas
El Capitan
El Capitan
Culberson County, Texas, U.S.
Range Guadalupe Mountains
Coordinates 31°52′38″N 104°51′29″W / 31.87722°N 104.85806°W / 31.87722; -104.85806Coordinates: 31°52′38″N 104°51′29″W / 31.87722°N 104.85806°W / 31.87722; -104.85806[1]
Topo map Guadalupe Peak
Geology
Age of rock Permian
Climbing
Easiest route Hike

El Capitan is a peak in Culberson County, Texas, USA, within Guadalupe Mountains National Park.[2] It is the eighth-highest peak in Texas, and rises abruptly out of the Chihuahuan Desert floor; it is considered[who?] the "signature peak" of West Texas.

View of the summit of El Capitan

El Capitan is the southern terminus of the Guadalupe escarpment, an ancient limestone reef that forms the present-day Guadalupe Mountains. El Capitan is guarded by cliffs on three sides, and those faces are rarely climbed due to the unstable condition of the rock and the sheer nature of the peak. Hikers can scramble up to the summit by first climbing to near the summit of Guadalupe Peak and scrambling down to the south to the Guadalupe Peak-El Capitan saddle, then up the backside of El Capitan.

Used as a signal peak for hundreds of years by travelers in the area, its sheer face is visible when approaching the Headquarters Visitor Center at Guadalupe Mountains National Park from both the south and the northeast.

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