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Time to Travel River Road

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Offline McTraveler

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Time to Travel River Road
« on: February 01, 2010, 08:34:29 PM »
Continuing to plan 2 week Big Bend area adventure (end of March into early April) and getting lots of info from the Benders on this Chat.  Thanks so much!  Cannot find this info anywhere... Need rough estimate on time needed to travel east on River Road from Ross Maxwell Scenic to Fresno campsite? Will be in 4x4 high clearance truck. Understand that time will depend on how much we explore along the way
Tentative thought for that day was:
South on Ross Maxwell Scenic Drive
Hike Burro Mesa Pour off or Top of Pour Off
Castolon VC
Hike Santa Elena Canyon
Then backtrack to hit River Road east to Fresno Campsite

What about time needed to travel from Fresno Campsite to Rio Grande Village area?
Thanks for help in advance!


Offline jeffblaylock

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Re: Time to Travel River Road
« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2010, 10:12:48 PM »
About 3 hours, assuming you find yourself exploring.

The time it takes to drive anywhere in Big Bend is deceptive. It always takes longer, and the River Road is no exception. Take it slow. Since you're there for 2 weeks, you should not feel like you're in any hurry.

Personally, I would start on the River Road in the morning and enjoy a leisurely exploration. Spend plenty of time at the mine ruins. Then sit back and watch the desert change color and attitude as the sun sets and night falls. The rest of the stuff you've listed before taking on the River Road is better done another day.

From Fresno to RGV is about 3 hours, assuming you find yourself exploring.

There are also lots of interesting things near Santa Elena Canyon that are worth exploring, including Coyote Cemetery, the various ruins, and the overlooks. Tuff Canyon is cool, too.
Jeff Blaylock
Austin, Texas

"We'll be back, someday soon. We will return, someday, and when we do the gritty
splendor and the complicated grandeur of Big Bend will still be here. Waiting for us."--Ed Abbey


Offline The Scorpion

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Re: Time to Travel River Road
« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2010, 11:48:36 PM »

Hike Burro Mesa Pour off or Top of Pour Off

on the bottom pour off trail there are actually 2 pour offs back there. the one on the map is Burro Mesa Pour off, when you walk back on the trail, you will go right in the wash to get to the advertised pour off.

However if you go some what straight in a more northern direction, you will get to another wash, some mild boulder maneuvering is needed but its not bad.

the top part of the trail is definitely  more interesting, both can be done in the same morning

everything is better with bacon!!!


Offline jave

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Re: Time to Travel River Road
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2010, 10:41:36 PM »
I went from Ross Maxwell to Smokey Creek on Sunday (about 8 miles).  River Road was in great shape- no boulders or deep sand.  Was probably 30 mins. Black Dike to Loop may be worse.  I was in a 2WD without super high clearance.  Daylight really helps.


Offline Al

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Re: Time to Travel River Road
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2010, 11:05:31 PM »
If you have a plane to catch in Midland, it's a bit less than an hour from Fresno to asphalt, even driving a compact rent car.  (I am not in any way recommending one should drive a rent car down River Road East.)




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