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The Big Bend Chat Archives => Big Bend National Park Q&A => Topic started by: taw6644 on November 12, 2006, 06:41:38 PM

Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: taw6644 on November 12, 2006, 06:41:38 PM
As some of you know, my dad and I are headed to Big Bend this winter. We will be climbing some mountains. Well, if any of you want to join us up Elephant tusk, your more than welcome to come along. We will acsend via NE gap.
Title: Re: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Casa Grande on November 12, 2006, 06:43:21 PM
Quote from: "taw6644"
As some of you know, my dad and I are headed to Big Bend this winter. We will be climbing some mountains. Well, if any of you want to join us up Elephant tusk, your more than welcome to come along.


OH!!  ME ME ME!!!  We'll be doing the Casa Grande rendevous on the 27th.....an elephant tusk round up would be iceing on the cake!

I'll have to beg for permission to do two awesome hikes in a week

 [-o<
Title: Re: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: taw6644 on November 12, 2006, 07:36:37 PM
Quote from: "Casa Grande"
Quote from: "taw6644"
As some of you know, my dad and I are headed to Big Bend this winter. We will be climbing some mountains. Well, if any of you want to join us up Elephant tusk, your more than welcome to come along.


OH!!  ME ME ME!!!  We'll be doing the Casa Grande rendevous on the 27th.....an elephant tusk round up would be iceing on the cake!

I'll have to beg for permission to do two awesome hikes in a week

 [-o<


Most Excellent. Hey we will be climbing casa grande too. probably the 29th, but hey what ever. We will climb ET on Dec. 31.
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Picacho on November 12, 2006, 07:59:41 PM
David,

Is a 360 degree pano from the summit of Elephant Tusk in order?
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Casa Grande on November 12, 2006, 08:02:37 PM
Quote from: "attm"
David,

Is a 360 degree pano from the summit of Elephant Tusk in order?


uh, hell yes! I"ve been trying to arrange that for about 3 years  =P~
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Picacho on November 21, 2006, 09:05:58 AM
Looks like I will be there.  A couple other peaks near Elephant Tusk may be in order for me either before or after Elephant Tusk including Backbone Ridge, Dominguez Mountain, and maybe a couple of interesting unnamed peaks in the area.  If I stay long enough summits of Vernon Bailey, Pulliam, Ward, and Panther could be on the list.
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: 01ACRViper on November 21, 2006, 10:33:30 AM
now i need to beat you to the top of Panther and ward  :oops:
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: TheWildWestGuy on November 21, 2006, 05:43:36 PM
That's for the invite but I can't make it.
If you want a cool basecamp site go about 3/4 mile upstream/uptrail from the 1st spring (the one at the base of the Tusk) and you will find a 2nd spring with a small hill nearby a bit further up the trail.  Ontop of the small hill you will find a flat spot and a large "table" rock.   This is one of my favorite backcountry campsites as it has a full view of the Tusk and you get alpenglow off the peaks for about 30 minutes after sunset.  It's also nice having a water source nearby and I am 100% positive this spring will be flowing.
If you decide not to summit the Tusk or have the time there are some really interesting drainages with springs on the West and NW side of the Tusk that are rarely visited and very scenic.  You could also go over into the Fresno Creek Drainage (just follow the trail) and then go down into Fresno Canyon and circle around to rejoin the ET Trail on the South Side of the Tusk.  The Fresno Creek Canyon in this area is studded with tree's and flowing water and where it gets steep enough (about 2 miles south of the junction) it has scattered rock mills that have carved circular bathing pools into the rock.   Just leave yourself plenty of time to get back to camp as it gets dark early and FAST this time of year.... TWWG
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Picacho on November 22, 2006, 11:54:47 AM
01ACRViper,

Send me an email.  I lost your's when I switched computers.
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: taw6644 on November 22, 2006, 08:06:27 PM
ATTM, I look forward to climbing with you! We'll keep in touch.
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Picacho on December 05, 2006, 08:00:44 AM
Taw, are you climbing anything else before or after Elephant Tusk?  Is ET still a go on the 31st?
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Hayduke on December 05, 2006, 09:56:22 AM
When I climbed ET, I had expectations of great views - it is after all a high place with a commanding view of the area. I would up being a littlle bit disappointed, especially with the view to the south. ET was so high up that there was substantial haze or dust that made views to the south (the lower elevation side) a bit fuzzy.

I found the views to be better (clearer) from the top of Cerro Castellan - only 800 ft. above the surrounding area but with less dust to cut through.

I also found the views from the top of Backbone Ridge to be very interesting. Great photos of south rim with ET or another of Backbone's vertebrae in the foreground.  You don't get as much interesting foreground from the top of ET.

So if I was guessing as to good pano spots I would say that either Cerro Castellan or Backbone would be better than ET. (But just try to get up Cerro!)

Now I guess that all of this sounds a bit negative about ET, and I don't really mean it to be. I quite enjoyed this climb and one of these days I may do it again. The final narrow ridgeline leading to the summit is something I'll always remember, and the views from it down to the eastern drainage are not to be forgotten.

I hope if you do decide to do this later this month that y'all have good weather, clear skies and a fun climb!

Hayduke

PS A tidbit: ET was originally called Indianola Peak on early 20th century topos.
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: 01ACRViper on December 05, 2006, 03:10:11 PM
what a horrible view :(

(http://grbphotography.net/folders/bbnov/images/img_4354.jpg)

just hideous :cry: not worth the climb at all :roll:
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Casa Grande on December 05, 2006, 03:22:57 PM
sweet!  nice perspective of the rim

man, the more I look at that pic, the more I wanna go!  :cry:
Title: ET and BIBE...
Post by: okiehiker on December 05, 2006, 04:35:36 PM
There are many noteworthy points in the park.  

Casa Grande (probably not the most photographed peak in TX... that is likely El Capitan at GUMO....) is the signature peak.  Emory is the highest.  The balanced rock at Grapevine Hills is another widely known landmark.

Yet Elephant Tusk might truly be the crowning one of them all.

ET is the single peak that defines the scale of the mountains at BIBE.  

When one is in high (elevation-wise) mountains around the world, snow and ice, the vestigial effects of glaciers and other features give one a sense of scale.  

Desert mountains (or more specifically, photographs of desert mountains) do not give one that sense of just how large they are.  Though the Chisos are small in area, they are HUGE mountains.  The rise from the southeastern corner of BIBE to the summit of Emory is 6,100'

The rise from Phantom Ranch to the Bright Angel Lodge on the South Rim of Grand Canyon is 4,400'.

The rise from the Longs Peak Ranger Station to the summit of Longs Peak, (highest point in Rocky Mountain National Park) is 4,800'.

From the South Rim or Lost Mine Trail, Elephant Tusk is a small, but interesting monolith midway to the horizon, nearly half a mile below.  But from its base, ET is a massive peak, demanding skill and fortitude if one is to make the 2,000' climb.  

Then, when you are on the summit, the high Chisos stand half a mile above, and the Rio Grande more than 3,000' below.  It is the one place where the whole park comes into perspecitve.

I am sorry that Hayduke was there on a day when the visibility was poor. (I believe that we have a thread on the visibility subject...)  I have been on top of Emory when ET was so hazy as to be impossible to focus my camera.  I have been on top of both peaks on days when the visibility was 200 miles.  The panorama is awesome.  

I don't think that we are going to be able to get to ET for the group climb New Year's Eve.  We will be up in the Christmas Mountains.  But to anyone who is considering it: if you have the chance... GO!
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Casa Grande on December 05, 2006, 07:48:06 PM
ET is very elusive for me. I"ve been chasing the idea of going for years and yet it remains only a dream for awhile. It has been my number 1 climb on my to do list for some time and I'm not sure I'll make it there soon. It is a very mystical place indeed.  I enjoy staring at it from the rim, glenn spring, et1, etc. etc.
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: taw6644 on December 05, 2006, 09:06:02 PM
Quote from: "attm"
Taw, are you climbing anything else before or after Elephant Tusk?  Is ET still a go on the 31st?


Yes I will be climbing Emory, Casa Grande, Lost Mine, and ET. Although, my plans might change, because I got invited something on the 28th. If I go, I dont know my actual schedule, but I can get back to you on that later. Why what are you thinking?
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Picacho on December 06, 2006, 09:20:25 AM
Let me know when you can.  Since I've already climbed the peak, if no one else goes I'll probably climb something else or head home a day early.  Are you not going to make it David?
Title: Perish the Thought...
Post by: SHANEA on December 06, 2006, 10:43:08 AM
Quote from: "attm"
or head home a day early.
  :shock:
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Casa Grande on December 06, 2006, 10:44:08 AM
Quote from: "attm"
Let me know when you can.  Since I've already climbed the peak, if no one else goes I'll probably climb something else or head home a day early.  Are you not going to make it David?


sadly, no  :cry:
Title: Guess What
Post by: SHANEA on December 06, 2006, 10:58:09 AM
Quote from: "Casa Grande"
sadly, no  :cry:


Guess what, I'm very pleased to announce that Elephant Tusk is not going anywhere very soon, so it will be there to climb another day :P
Title: Re: Guess What
Post by: Casa Grande on December 06, 2006, 11:57:52 AM
Quote from: "SHANEA"
Quote from: "Casa Grande"
sadly, no  :cry:


Guess what, I'm very pleased to announce that Elephant Tusk is not going anywhere very soon, so it will be there to climb another day :P


touche
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: taw6644 on December 06, 2006, 05:36:01 PM
Quote from: "attm"
Let me know when you can.  Since I've already climbed the peak, if no one else goes I'll probably climb something else or head home a day early.  Are you not going to make it David?


Hey ATTM, when will you be in the park?
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Picacho on December 06, 2006, 06:26:02 PM
I'll arrive on the 27th.  I'll leave whenever I get ready to.
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: taw6644 on December 06, 2006, 07:22:42 PM
Quote from: "attm"
I'll arrive on the 27th.  I'll leave whenever I get ready to.


Hmm, we were going to get there on the 27th, but now thats changed. How long would you be willing to wait for us? a day or 2. im sure you could get in some hiking.
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: taw6644 on December 11, 2006, 09:55:58 PM
Hey good news everyone. Well if you wanted to join me for ET and the other clombs, my old scheldule is a go. I will arrive on Dec. 27, maybe 26 now, and we can climb.
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: taw6644 on December 25, 2006, 04:09:23 PM
Well this is just a reminder. This is a last minute deal if anyone wants to go.
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Windchime on January 04, 2007, 05:55:41 PM
Just returned to the park and see that there was a SAR on ET Dec 30-31. From what I understand, all is well with the hiker.  Did not get the name. He was stranded on a cliff and could not get back down off of it. He had a transponder which the Air Force picked up and notified the park. DPS chopper was able to zero in on his signal and direct rangers to his location. Rangers claim the transponder saved his life and was the first time one was ever used on a SAR in the park.
Title: Anyone for Elephant tusk this New Years
Post by: Robert on January 04, 2007, 06:04:00 PM
He's already posted his story.

http://www.bigbendchat.com/portal/forum/index.php?topic=2695.0&start=0
Title: Bottom Line?
Post by: SHANEA on January 04, 2007, 06:59:32 PM
Quote from: "Windchime"
a SAR on ET Dec 30-31...


Just for grins, and knowing that the US Government and Dept. of Interior and NPS and BIBE certainly keep track of such things, what was the bottom line cost in dollars for the SAR?  I'm sure that it comes out of someones budget.

Does anyone know what the cost of the SAR that was all over the media up in Washington, Mt. Hood I believe?
Title: Mount Hood
Post by: SHANEA on January 04, 2007, 07:39:39 PM
Quote from: "Associated Press"
Mount Hood search cost hard to determine
December 19, 2006

HOOD RIVER, Ore. --As rescue efforts continue on Mount Hood, so do the costs.

The Hood River County Sheriff's Office, one of the main agencies spearheading the search for the three climbers, estimates it spent roughly $5,000 a day for the first three days and about $6,500 a day after that.

But that's only part of what will be become the final price tag, in part because much of it is being done by volunteers and the military, which in the past has tagged such missions as training.

"There is no way of answering these things," said Georges Kleinbaum, state search and rescue coordinator for Oregon. "Obviously there is a lot of money being expended, but there is never a bill to look at."

Kleinbaum did say that Black Hawk helicopters are estimated to cost $2,800 an hour to operate. At least two Black Hawks and a Nevada Air National Guard C-130 transport have been repeatedly used in the search.

Maj. James Wilson, spokesman for the Air Force Reserve speaking on behalf of the military effort, said the costs for the joint military have not been calculated.

The search for climbers Kelly James, 48, of Dallas; Brian Hall, 37, of Dallas; and Jerry "Nikko" Cooke, 36, of New York, started Dec. 11. On Monday, James' body was found.

Oregon law does not require victims to pay for rescue efforts unless they were negligent and failed to take basic steps to keep themselves safe, Kleinbaum said. And in those cases, costs are limited to $500 per person. Other costs are absorbed by the state and local agencies involved.