El Capitan in Guadalupe Mountains National Park


El Capitan in Guadalupe Mountains National Park is the most photographed mountain in Texas. This picture hopefully shows you why. El Capitan is the southern most point of the Guadalupe Mountain range in western Texas. The range is the remains of a Permian Era coral reef that formed near the shores of an ancient sea. After being buried for millions of years, the land around the Guadalupe Mountains was pushed up and the overlying layers eroded away exposing the ancient remains of the reef. Now El Capitan towers over 8000 feet above sea level (nearby Guadalupe Mountain is even taller) as it rises spectacularly nearly straight out of the dessert floor.

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Last modified: 16 October 1996, Karp@virginia.edu