Mystery Destination: A Large, Dark and Uncrowded National Park

Mystery National Park

Welcome to another installment of our Mystery Destination Series. Each week we pick one outdoor adventure destination, give you 5 clues and see if you can name the mystery destination. In recent weeks, the answer has been the name of a mountain, a ski town and a backpacking trail. This week the mystery destination is a National Park.

Read through the five clues and look at the attached photo. If you know the answer, leave your guess in the comments below then share this page with your friends to see if they know.

Mystery Destination National Park

Photo by Brinton Boston

  • This National Park covers 1,252 square miles and is larger than the state of Delaware. The park boundary is set by over 244 miles of river frontage.
  • The park was named an “International Dark Sky Park” in 2012 when the International Dark Sky Association noted the park had the darkest measured sky in the lower 48 states.
  • With an average of only 350,000 visitors each year, this is one of the least visited National Parks in the United States.
  • This large diverse area covers desert, mountain and canyon topography, and is home to more than 1,200 species of plants, more than 450 species of birds, 56 species of reptiles, and 75 species of mammals.
  • Within the National Park boundaries, you’ll find an entire mountain range. This is the only mountain range in the United States that is completely contained within National Park boundaries.

Do you know the answer? Have you visited this National Park? Tell us know in the comments below if you know the answer. Bonus points if you can name the river that borders this park and the mountain range located within the park.

Did you enjoy this little outdoor adventure game? If you missed any of our previous Mystery Destinations be sure to check them out now.

Mystery Destination 1: Reptiles, Sand and Mountains… Oh My!
Mystery Destination 2: A Mountain, Lake and Wreckage
Mystery Destination 3: A Backpacker’s Dream Trail
Mystery Destination 4: A Western Ski Town

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Andy Hawbaker
Andy is a hiker, backpacker, snowboarder and outdoor fanatic. When he isn't exploring the Rocky Mountains with his wife and daughters he shares his adventures here on the Sierra SocialHub.

46 comments on “Mystery Destination: A Large, Dark and Uncrowded National Park

  1. KiminCalifornia

    Joshua Tree, Colorado River and Little San Bernardino, Pinto, Hexie, Cottonwood mountain ranges?

  2. Therese Noren

    I got it! But, I had to finally google it. I won’t spoil it for the rest, but I did guess correctly which state it was in.

  3. Kristi

    Big Bend National Park, Texas
    River that borders park is the Rio Grande
    Mountain Range is the Chisos Mountains

  4. John Trent

    Looks like it could be Death Valley National Park. We went there a couple summers ago. Beautiful desolation.

  5. Ashear Barr

    Is this Guadalupe Peak National Park on the border of Texas and New Mexico? I discovered the park in 1975 when it was still under construction and we had to walk about a mile from the camp ground to the ranger station for water. Lovely place with some really good hiking.

  6. Mike C.

    Big Bend National Park, Texas, on the “big bend” of the Rio Grande river. The Chisos Mountains are located entirely within the park, of which the high point is Emory Peak, a fun climb! Lots of bears, mountain lions, and javelinas as well! A beautiful slice of America which is fortunately still far from civilization.

    1. Sharon Prow

      i spent a spring break at death valley, funace creek and spent most of my time in the all natural swimming pools. also took a nice horse back ride thru the desert, it was amazing.

  7. Janelle Eastham

    Big Bend National Park. It is never found by accident. It has a rare beauty and a demanding terrain. I visited there as a child and volunteered in 2009. If I were independently wealthy I would live there full time. The river is the Rio Grande or across the river it is known as the Rio Bravo del Norte.


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