Texas, United States
El Capitan is a peak in Culberson County, Texas, USA, within the Guadalupe Mountains National Park. It is the eighth-highest peak in Texas, and is considered the "signature peak" of West Texas.
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. A permit is required as there is no trail from Guadalupe Peak to El Capitan.
El Capitan, used as a signal peak for hundreds of years by travelers in the area, is a stunning peak rising quite abruptly out of the Chihuahuan Desert floor in West Texas. Its sheer face is visible when approaching the Headquarters Visitor Center at Guadalupe Mountains National Park from both the south and the northeast.
This El Capitan is not to be confused with its El Capitan cousin in Yosemite - El Capitan of Guadalupe Mountains National Park is comparable in stature and sheerness.