Cycling Panther Pass
Ride 5.2 miles gaining 1,750’ at 6.2% (6.7% climb only).
Climb summary by PJAMM ambassador Dan Razum, Campbell, CA
This climb starts out with a gentle gradient for the first mile or two and slowly gets steeper as we go further. It never gets too steep, though, we are still able to enjoy the scenery.
This ride takes us up and into Chisos Basin, which is a popular destination within Big Bend park. The road is mostly straight with gentle curves along the way except near the end, where there is a hairpin curve. At the beginning there are low lying shrubs and small plants which give way to oak and pine trees near the top. Due to the altitude and vegetation it feels slightly cooler than in the valley below although it can still get hot.
Chisos Basin and the surrounding mountains are all part of a prehistoric volcano. It is not obvious on the climb, we are too close, but from several miles away, near the north entrance to Big Bend, for example, we can see how the entire area used to be a single mountain. The visitor centers in the park provide more details about the history of the area.
The road is in good condition and traffic is light. There are no provisions along the climb but after a short descent into Chisos Basin there are restrooms and a visitor center, as well as a campground, so we aren't actually as isolated as it first appears at the beginning of the climb.
Thank you Dan!!