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First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report

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Offline jtemples

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #30 on: March 04, 2019, 08:16:17 PM »
We also filtered and drank from “False Fresno” on our recent OML. We even rested and had lunch there! When we reached False Fresno, my husband said that according to his GPS we weren’t quite to Fresno, but he is notoriously awful with directions and I was the one who had done all the research on the trip and I thought it seemed to fit descriptions I had read, so I told him he was wrong and we were definitely at Fresno. Oops! 


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My wife and I both got a good laugh relating to your post Ravenpuff!  Now does anyone on here have the exact coords for Upper Juniper Springs? 

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Offline jtemples

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #31 on: March 04, 2019, 08:31:13 PM »
One aspect of the trip which surprised me was our lack of appetites on the trail, and especially at the end of the day.  We brought entirely too much food.

I’ve been backpacking for a decade now, and the same thing happens to me almost every trip. I have a voracious appetite at home, but it all but disappears on the trail. It may be because I am shocking my body with the unusual activity of walking all day long. I usually go out for only a couple of nights, and I’ve been told that after four or five days on a longer trek, your body starts getting used to the new schedule and your appetite begins to return.

It is as if my body is rebelling against eating.
I agree with both of you, and it's interesting to experience how our God-gifted/limited physiology kicks in when stressed and deprived when so many of us live relatively sedentary lives.  I know I for one live one (relatively sedentary/regular/routine).  That's why to me, breaking out of the normal, stretching some boundaries within the margins of wise forethought, is such an amazing feeling.   Big Bend affords that if one choose too.  Amen.

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Offline dprather

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #32 on: March 04, 2019, 09:10:23 PM »
I'll remember two quotes from you report.

(1) "Amazing, brutal, and beautiful."

(2) "My wife is 47...had never slept on the ground (much less back-packed to get anywhere in her life)"

I'd like to know - is your wife hooked, does she want to go back for more, has she sworn off backpacking, or what?
Leave "quit" at the car.  Embrace the trail as your friend.  Expect to enjoy yourself, and to be amazed.

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Offline RichardM

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #33 on: March 04, 2019, 10:11:41 PM »
I'm sure someone with better tools and skills could tweak this photo into Christmas Card material.

Great trip and report!

First attached pic (jtemples.jpg) was created using PhotoScape with manual brightening. Second one was with Snapseed  app on my phone using selective tool for brightening. Much faster and better results.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2019, 12:02:08 PM by RichardM »

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Offline RichardM

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #34 on: March 05, 2019, 11:14:00 AM »
Now does anyone on here have the exact coords for Upper Juniper Springs?

Definitely take your GPS with way points loaded!
I don't see why you would carry all that water from the basin when you are passing 2 reliable sources.

Upper Juniper Spring (29° 14.994'N, 103° 16.686'W)
Upper Juniper is about 40 yards off trail in the trees. Nice shady spot cool off!

Fresno Creek (29° 12.141'N, 103° 17.656'W)
The Fresno Creek location is just South of the where it crosses the Dodson Trail. You should be able to find water if you head south down the Fresno drainage but it is exposed to the sun.

A little Google Earth work might help. You can actually see most of the trails including the confusing jog down to Juniper.



The first time I found Upper Juniper, I was coming up from the Southwest (the right side of the picture). Juniper Trail takes that crazy "Z" shape. I saw the confusing sign that says "Juniper Camp" - there's no camp there. I guess they were marking the spring without really saying so. Instead of taking the hard right up hill, I went straight down a well-worn path into the trees thinking it was the trail proper. The trail soon petered out but low and behold there was water and shade!
Looks like someone tagged it on Google Maps.
https://goo.gl/maps/eut9b8QYgZC2
« Last Edit: March 05, 2019, 11:20:59 AM by RichardM »

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Offline jtemples

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #35 on: March 05, 2019, 06:53:05 PM »
I'm sure someone with better tools and skills could tweak this photo into Christmas Card material.

Great trip and report!

First attached pic (jtemples.jpg) was created using PhotoScape with manual brightening. Second one was with Snapseed  app on my phone using selective tool for brightening. Much faster and better results.
Thanks Richard.  I'm still tweaking it. 

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Offline jtemples

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #36 on: March 05, 2019, 07:28:50 PM »
Happy Mountain Laurel in Juniper Canyon.

This was one of my favorite shots of the trip.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2019, 07:35:10 PM by RichardM »

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Offline jtemples

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #37 on: March 05, 2019, 07:42:20 PM »
Juniper Canyon sunrise.

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Offline jtemples

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #38 on: March 05, 2019, 07:57:58 PM »
And one for Mule Ears.  Since I haven't met him I'm guessing he's an older, and certainly-wiser soul who would appreciate a B/W of his namesake.  Thank you for the enormous amount of information you have posted to this forum for those who will follow in your footsteps brother.

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Offline mule ears

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #39 on: March 06, 2019, 06:39:22 AM »
And one for Mule Ears.  Since I haven't met him I'm guessing he's an older, and certainly-wiser soul who would appreciate a B/W of his namesake.  Thank you for the enormous amount of information you have posted to this forum for those who will follow in your footsteps brother.

Thank you jtemples for the thought and while I am somewhat polished by the friction of time fortunately I am only 8 years older than you which still leaves many years of practice to refine my backcountry skills some more.   :icon_lol:
temperatures exceed 100 degrees F
minimum 1 gallon water per person/day
no shade, no water
http://40yearsofwalking.wordpress.com/

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Offline jtemples

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #40 on: March 09, 2019, 07:21:18 PM »
And one for Mule Ears.  Since I haven't met him I'm guessing he's an older, and certainly-wiser soul who would appreciate a B/W of his namesake.  Thank you for the enormous amount of information you have posted to this forum for those who will follow in your footsteps brother.

Thank you jtemples for the thought and while I am somewhat polished by the friction of time fortunately I am only 8 years older than you which still leaves many years of practice to refine my backcountry skills some more.   :icon_lol:
  We're all a work in progress, as long as we're progressing. 

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Offline jtemples

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #41 on: March 09, 2019, 07:24:33 PM »
This was one of my favorite shots of the trip.
Did the photo not attach? Love the other shots that did...
Thanks RichardM.  The shot of the Mountain Laurel was my favorite.  I just didn't caption it correctly.  I would love to spend several weeks out there capturing the minute and grand in my lense.  I'm quite the amateur photographer though. 
« Last Edit: March 09, 2019, 07:37:38 PM by RichardM »

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Offline Hookim

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #42 on: March 12, 2019, 01:47:09 AM »
Also, a note on trail appetite: what you experienced is not uncommon. You'll notice many of us reporting the same thing from our trips. Personally, I usually only eat intermittent snacks until dinner, and then that's my one big meal of the day. It's no big deal on trips of a 2-4 days, but that kind of approach got me into trouble a couple of years ago on one of my two-week cross-park hikes. I bonked big-time coming through the Deadhorse Mountains and dropped several IQ points.  Nearly died of stupidity.  Now, on long hikes, I force myself to eat three meals a day


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Offline jtemples

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #43 on: March 16, 2019, 01:14:11 PM »
I'll remember two quotes from you report.

(1) "Amazing, brutal, and beautiful."

(2) "My wife is 47...had never slept on the ground (much less back-packed to get anywhere in her life)"

I'd like to know - is your wife hooked, does she want to go back for more, has she sworn off backpacking, or what?
The OML may be a one-and-done for us (according to my wife), but after several weeks of blisters healing on her feet, and some reflection, she's once again showing eagerness to hit the trail.  Personally, I'd like to experience the OML again, this time clockwise and spending the last eve on the South Rim.  (Note:  Unbeknownst to my wife prior to our hike, I'd packed a flask of whiskey to enjoy with her for our last eve/camp of the hike on the South rim before our next days descent back into the basin.  Although we didn't end up staying on the rim and instead continued to the basin, we did use some of the whiskey to disinfect her blisters on the Dodson before dressing them.  I was impressed, while applying the whiskey to her raw skin, with her noise discipline as I'm sure it stung.  I ended up not drinking a drop of it the entire trip  :'().  We're currently researching/planning on hiking Marufo Vega for our next Big Bend hike.  Mule Ears recommended it and after some initial research, it looks to be another great hiking opportunity.  We prob won't get a chance to hike it until next winter though, and will probably tackle it as a day hike and travel very light but may opt for an overnight instead and plan accordingly. 
We learned a great deal on the OML about what we individually and together require to enjoy a lengthy hike.  We learned:
- What we require to limit/ease any pain from it (foot, Leukotape etc).
- How to better determine our water and especially food needs during and after exertion.
- More awareness of our physical abilities/limitations as we've gotten older/wiser.
- A better understanding of equipment load.   
I will say on equipment load, that there were only 2 things I had in my pack that I didn't use.  One was a pair of fleece gloves.  I anticipated there may be a need for them on the rim but we ended up not camping there.  I also had a lightweight, long-sleeved shirt which I didn't use as I wore the same clothes all three days (did change underwear though).   Just some thoughts.  Cheers ya'll.

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Offline Hookim

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Re: First Timer Counter-clockwise OML 25-27 Feb Trip Report
« Reply #44 on: March 17, 2019, 04:16:24 AM »
I'll remember two quotes from you report.

(1) "Amazing, brutal, and beautiful."

(2) "My wife is 47...had never slept on the ground (much less back-packed to get anywhere in her life)"

I'd like to know - is your wife hooked, does she want to go back for more, has she sworn off backpacking, or what?
The OML may be a one-and-done for us (according to my wife), but after several weeks of blisters healing on her feet, and some reflection, she's once again showing eagerness to hit the trail.  Personally, I'd like to experience the OML again, this time clockwise and spending the last eve on the South Rim.  (Note:  Unbeknownst to my wife prior to our hike, I'd packed a flask of whiskey to enjoy with her for our last eve/camp of the hike on the South rim before our next days descent back into the basin.  Although we didn't end up staying on the rim and instead continued to the basin, we did use some of the whiskey to disinfect her blisters on the Dodson before dressing them.  I was impressed, while applying the whiskey to her raw skin, with her noise discipline as I'm sure it stung.  I ended up not drinking a drop of it the entire trip  :'().  We're currently researching/planning on hiking Marufo Vega for our next Big Bend hike.  Mule Ears recommended it and after some initial research, it looks to be another great hiking opportunity.  We prob won't get a chance to hike it until next winter though, and will probably tackle it as a day hike and travel very light but may opt for an overnight instead and plan accordingly. 
We learned a great deal on the OML about what we individually and together require to enjoy a lengthy hike.  We learned:
- What we require to limit/ease any pain from it (foot, Leukotape etc).
- How to better determine our water and especially food needs during and after exertion.
- More awareness of our physical abilities/limitations as we've gotten older/wiser.
- A better understanding of equipment load.   
I will say on equipment load, that there were only 2 things I had in my pack that I didn't use.  One was a pair of fleece gloves.  I anticipated there may be a need for them on the rim but we ended up not camping there.  I also had a lightweight, long-sleeved shirt which I didn't use as I wore the same clothes all three days (did change underwear though).   Just some thoughts.  Cheers ya'll.
I did the MV a couple of years back over New Year's. Day trip. It was beautiful, and sitting in the hot springs under the stars was a great way to finish it off.

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