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I was there recently and would say "probably not" the Glenn Springs road to the Juniper Canyon Road is do-able but the Juniper Canyon road has a lot of large rocks that will probably take out your oil pan if your not careful. Upper Juniper Springs was flowing and so is Fresno so you have water at those two spots. Sometimes people leave extra water in the bear box at the Juniper Canyon Trailhead but you can't count on that. There will probably also be water in the tinajas in Boot Canyon about 1/3 mile upstream from where the Juniper Trail joins the Boot Canyon/South Rim Trail. So my advice would be to either bring a water filter and carry extra water or have someone leave water for you in the bear box at the Juniper Canyon Trailhead. Upper Juniper Springs is flowing slowly but reliably but can be tricky to find, when you see the metal signpost for Juniper Camp follow the branching trail into the ravine/tree's and find the cement ruins. Then follow the metal pipe uphill ~30 yards to the small pool of water below the large granite boulder. Upper Juniper Springs has a very small rock bowl only 2' by 3' max but does hold enough water to filter from even during these dry times. You could probably drive your Saturn up the Juniper Canyon Road if you took it slow and careful but it's risky and questionable and conditions may have changed since I was there recently. Always carry extra water and use electrolyte tablets in your water to minimize the amount you need to drink. I used these for the first time on a recent trip and found they cut my water consumption by about 25% without dehydration. TWWG
Are there any maps floating around on this board that show the OML trail in more detail, specifically the potential water sources? All the maps I've seen didn't show me much. I plan on buying some topo maps before I go, but if there is a good map I can refer to in the meantime, that would help me plan this trip out.
I don't have tracks, but I probably have some waypoints from that trip which might be helpful (including the precise campsite locations). Here are links to the custom topo maps:http://www.jeffblaylock.com/pix/oml_map1.gifhttp://www.jeffblaylock.com/pix/oml_map2.gifhttp://www.jeffblaylock.com/pix/oml_map3.gifhttp://www.jeffblaylock.com/pix/oml_map4.gif
Are you doing the OML in the traditional 'clockwise' loop? That means starting from the Basin campground, hiking up to Juniper, down Juniper to the intersection with the Dodson, then across to Homer Wilson Ranch, and then up Blue Creek to the Basin campground?I hiked that version of the OML in Feb '09, and had enough water to get from the Basin campground to Fresno Creek to resupply. Started with about 8 liters of water, had 1 liter left when I got to Fresno Creek.I've heard during dry weather, you may have to go down Fresno creek a few hundred feet to find water seeping out. There was plenty flowing when I did the OML, so it wasn't an issue.The only minor route finding problem along the Dodson is when you are traveling along the dry wash near the intersection of the Smoky Creek trail. Just keep looking for cairns, and you'll have no problem. I hiked the entire OML and really only needed my GPS to see how many miles I've hiked and how much left each day. I never needed the GPS to get back on the trail.If you are hiking the traditional OML, you really only need one water cache at Homer Wilson Ranch. Cache 2 gals there and you'll be in good shape. I only cached 1 gal there, and ran a bit short of water the next day as I hiked back down to my car at the Basin Campground.I spent 3 nights along the trail... Left my car at the basin parking lot, hiked up the Pinnacles trail and connected to the Juniper Canyon Trail. Night #1 was about 2/3 of the way down Juniper Canyon Trail, Night #2 was at the Dodson/Smoky Creek trail intersection, Night #3 was at Laguna West, the last day was a short 2-3 hour hike back to my car.The NPS website has a good suggested itinerary for hiking the OML:http://www.nps.gov/bibe/planyourvisit/oml-itinerary.htmDarin
(Sorry, I just tried to find the old BIG map that a you could download with all the designated campsites on it, but it must be classified now)
OK here is a site that will show you the map with the campsites on them. You have to click on the preview and zoom in, but it is what it is:http://shop.nationalgeographic.com/ngs/browse/productDetail.jsp?productId=225&code=SR50001
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