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I had a chance to visit Boquillas Canyon during my recent trip to Big Bend National Park. The Canyon is the easternmost of the three main narrows sections within the park along the Rio Grande. The narrows is about 20 miles long, starting just east of Rio Grande Village a point where the river is officially ‘wild and scenic’. Boquillas is not as deep or sheer as Santa Elena, nor as rugged as Marsical but is still very impressive. At low water levels, the canyon may be explored on foot but for most of the year, a boat is the only option – the water is deep and fast flowing. This was the case when we visited earlier this month. I was able to hike along the river’s edge until I could no longer go further due to high water. So, I stopped and put my tripod on the river’s edge and took this image. No clouds so the sunset was not as exciting but I did get some color on the horizon and off the canyon walls.

Boquillas means “little mouths” in Spanish and is probably a reference to its small entrance. The canyon is one of the most famous canyons in the park and is a favorite site for float trips down the river. Though its walls are more open and eroded than those in Santa Elena and Mariscal canyons, they still rise as high as 1,500 feet above the river below. They were carved out of thick layers of limestone originally deposited as sediments in a shallow sea, between 60 million and 130 million years ago.


Big Bend NP – Boquillas Canyon

This image was taken with my Canon EOS 5D Mark III using my Canon EF 16-35mm f/4 Lens set on 16 mm. The camera was set on Aperture priority mode with the aperture set at f/8, shutter speed at 1/200th of a second and the ISO set at 100.

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T Kahler Signature
© 2015 T. Kahler Photography

1 thought on “Boquillas”

  1. Terry, this location, with the right light, can allow some stunning images. Dykinga has one of Bougillas Canyon but from a different angle. I like the shot from above looking down on the water. I try to visit each time I go hoping for a nice sunset. .

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