Big Bend Chat

The Big Bend Review => Backcountry Campsites => Topic started by: RichardM on February 04, 2013, 04:41:44 PM

Title: Johnson's Ranch 1
Post by: RichardM on February 04, 2013, 04:41:44 PM

Quote from:
Two primitive campsites are located along the river at Johnson's Ranch, along the River Road West.

Site Name    JR-1    JR-2
Vehicles    2    3
Persons    10    8
Horses    4 (4x4 req.)    2 (4x4 req.)

How to Get There
The Johnson's Ranch campsites are located along the River Road, 15.6 miles from the west end near Castolon, or 38.4 miles from the east end near Rio Grande Village. There is a short 0.3 mile access road to the campsites.

Usual Road Conditions
The River Road is maintained for High-Clearance Vehicles Only. After rains, the River Road is extremely muddy and may quickly become impassable to ALL vehicles. Four-wheel drive may be required. Always ask a ranger for current conditions.
Current road conditions...

Ground Cover/Shade
Only minimal shade available at these campsites. The campsites are located in thick, brushy, riparian vegetation.

Only minimal views from the campsites, but a 5-minute walk to the Johnson Ranch ruins provides a magnificent view of the south Chisos, the Rio Grande, and the cliff face of the Sierra Ponce in Mexico.

River Access
The river is accessible by following some winding livestock trails through the thick mesquite. Access is easiest from site JR-2.

Cautionary Notes
To minimize the possibility of theft, secure belongings when away from the campsite and while sleeping. Do not leave site unattended for long periods of time.

Check current road conditions with a ranger. 4-wheel drive is required after any rain.

Nearby ruins are the remains of the Elmo Johnson Ranch. This combination trading post, cotton farm, and goat ranch was in operation until the 1940's. During the 1930's the US Army constructed an airstrip here. Camping is prohibited near the ruins.

A backcountry use permit is required (available at visitor centers). Campers are responsible for regulations listed on the permit. Camping is in designated sites for minimal impact on the surrounding vegetation.