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Big Bend Conservancy

Over-estimating your experience or under-estimating the terrain in a place like Big Bend can result in serious injury or death. Use the information and advice found here wisely. Climb/Hike/Camp/Drive at your own risk.

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High Clearance Vehicles

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Offline Brad

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High Clearance Vehicles
« on: November 19, 2009, 02:39:51 PM »
Hello,

I'm new to the forum group and about to visit Big Bend for the second time in two years.  I loved it so much I have to come back.

My first trip was mostly driving around and doing some day hikes off the major road i.e. Lost Mines, Grapevine Hills (Balanced Rock), Hot Springs, Boquillas Canyon.

So now, I'd like to do some more hikes and some car camping. Car Camp and do some of the Telephone Canyon Trail, Tinaja, Pine Canyon, Juniper Canyon etc...

A lot of what I've read online about the primitive roads say "high clearance and/or 4 WD". I didn't find anyway what is classified as a high clearance vehicle.  I have a 2006 Ford F-150 4WD.

Is that consider high clearance?  

My last trip I drove down Grapevine, Maverick Road and Hot Springs Road in a passenger car.  There was some rough spots but nothing the car didn't make it over.

I know I'll have to check with the rangers when I get to the park to get the latest news and a back country permit, by the way for car camping on the primitive car spots do you have to reserve at a particular spot  or can you pick and chose.

Thanks...looking forward to my trip into The Greatest National Park

Brad
« Last Edit: November 19, 2009, 02:47:59 PM by askinsb »
I can't stop thinking about my next trip to Big Bend!

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Offline dkerr24

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Re: High Clearance Vehicles
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2009, 03:10:50 PM »
Your vehicle should be fine unless you have something totally unsuited for off-pavement (like 20" rims with 1" sidewalls).  The area is very remote, so of course come prepared with a good spare, working tire jack, etc.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2009, 03:12:24 PM by dkerr24 »

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Offline TexasAggieHiker

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Re: High Clearance Vehicles
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2009, 03:13:54 PM »
My 4WD Chevy Silverado has no problem on the backroads, you should be fine.

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Offline Undertaker

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Re: High Clearance Vehicles
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2009, 04:27:59 PM »
What you have is more than high clearance, low clearance means you are leaving body parts, oil, trans fluid etc. Your vehicle should be more than fine. :eusa_dance: :eusa_dance:
Visiting BB since 1966, nothing like being lost and finding heaven.

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Offline RichardM

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Re: High Clearance Vehicles
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2009, 04:32:44 PM »
I know I'll have to check with the rangers when I get to the park to get the latest news and a back country permit, by the way for car camping on the primitive car spots do you have to reserve at a particular spot or can you pick and chose.
The primitive car camping spots are by reservation only. Check out http://www.nps.gov/bibe/planyourvisit/bc-roadsides.htm
and http://www.nps.gov/bibe/planyourvisit/roadsidecamps.htm

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Offline Casa Grande

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Re: High Clearance Vehicles
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2009, 05:13:33 PM »
sounds like you're covered.  Bring tire plugs, plug tools and air pump too.

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Offline Medic

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Re: High Clearance Vehicles
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2009, 05:40:32 PM »

The primitive car camping spots are by reservation only. Check out http://www.nps.gov/bibe/planyourvisit/bc-roadsides.htm
and http://www.nps.gov/bibe/planyourvisit/roadsidecamps.htm


Incorrect. Primitive sites are NOT reservable. However, you can get your permit up to 24 hours in advance. Edit: on posting, that sure sounded snarky. Didn't mean to be.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2009, 05:46:05 PM by Medic »
Remember, folks, it's 100 miles to the closest hospital.

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Offline RichardM

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Re: High Clearance Vehicles
« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2009, 06:03:32 PM »

The primitive car camping spots are by reservation only. Check out http://www.nps.gov/bibe/planyourvisit/bc-roadsides.htm
and http://www.nps.gov/bibe/planyourvisit/roadsidecamps.htm

Incorrect. Primitive sites are NOT reservable. However, you can get your permit up to 24 hours in advance. Edit: on posting, that sure sounded snarky. Didn't mean to be.
Yeah, that's what I meant to say but got lazy... :icon_redface:
Technically they're reservable, but only 24 hours in advance. :icon_rolleyes:

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Offline Robert

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Re: High Clearance Vehicles
« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2009, 06:08:42 PM »
It is always a good idea to bring some extra food and water in case you break down or get stuck somewhere. Some of the roads are lightly traveled and you may be waiting a while for someone to come by.

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Offline Al

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Re: High Clearance Vehicles
« Reply #9 on: November 19, 2009, 10:56:23 PM »
Get a continuous permit for the duration of your stay when you arrive. That way you can "reserve" your campsite days in advance.

Al
« Last Edit: November 19, 2009, 10:58:19 PM by Al »

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Offline CactusFlower

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Re: High Clearance Vehicles
« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2009, 11:36:16 PM »
We have taken a Chevy Suburban for years and usually take 2 spare tires.  For the very primitive roads and going during the off season, it just wasn't worth risking being stuck and having to hike out a long ways.  A few years back, we started back Grapevine, and got a flat in the first mile.  We changed the tire (well, I watched my brother change the tire and took pictures for later when it would become a treasured family memory...still waiting on that one) and made the prudent decision to turn around since now we no longer had a spare.  Also, be sure to check the air pressure in your spare before you head out, my folks went to change the tire once but found out the spare was flat too.  Not good!  Let us know where you end up, Brad!

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Offline DJ

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Re: High Clearance Vehicles
« Reply #11 on: November 20, 2009, 07:39:07 AM »
I have traveled Glenn Springs/River Road East 3 times. On 2 of the 3 trips I had 2 flat tires. Having paid to have my truck hauled from the Park to Alpine, I will definitely have 2 spares, plugs and fix-a-flat the next time I go off the blacktop.

DJ
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Offline Brad

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Re: High Clearance Vehicles
« Reply #12 on: November 20, 2009, 11:54:39 AM »
Hey Everyone,

Thanks for the information, I found out exactly what I wanted/needed to know.

Get tip about the tire plugs/patches, plug tools and air compressor.

Brad
I can't stop thinking about my next trip to Big Bend!

 


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