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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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Spring Break

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Offline Schroeder

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #15 on: January 08, 2015, 08:32:34 AM »
Shane, thanks for the great information. It sounds like my kind of place. We usually do 6 nights in BBRSP and only get ice at HQ. Other than that, everything is in the truck.
How would you say the roads are compared to BBRSP (say the rancherias road)?
What kind of tires do you have that you got a flat? I had a chunk taken out of the sidewall in BBRSP and the thing held up for another 50K.. BFG AT T/A

So we can camp at both the fish camps and hunting camps?
Any cool sites you could recommend (or specific areas)?

Yea we wouldn't be popping over the the NP.
Although I would like to hike Dog Canyon and Devil's Den. It looks like some road go near-ish there on the BGWMA side.

Thanks again for the info!
Scott

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SHANEA

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #16 on: January 09, 2015, 02:17:35 PM »
Tires, standard Good Year AT type of tires on pickups.

Webcams of the area:
http://www.texasbighornsociety.org/index.php/photos-videos/bighorn-webcam

Last time I was there, the roads were not bad.  I wouldn't take a Miata down there, but any reasonable car or truck can go a lot of places.

You can camp at the hunting and fishing sites.

Things to see and do.  I'd ride the roads out there and explore the area.   Lots of guzzlers to see, watch for Big Horn Sheep, some old houses, windmills, etc. 

https://tpwd.texas.gov/huntwild/hunt/wma/find_a_wma/list/?id=2
Access restricted to Maravillas and Horse Canyons, Rio Grande and the headquarters campsite from March 1 to August 31.

They don't have their 2015 work plan posted yet.
http://www.texasbighornsociety.org/

Lots of information posted https://tpwd.texas.gov/huntwild/hunt/wma/find_a_wma/list/?id=2


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SHANEA

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #17 on: January 09, 2015, 02:23:43 PM »
"IF" you could get back to it and the gates are not locked, then the area around campsite #9 is outstanding.  It's right next to Stillwell Mountain if I recall correctly.  We climbed it one day.  There is also a long closed road that is great for hiking.  However, it took a 4x4 to get to #9 - or at least good ground clearance.

One other thing to note, if you are deep into the interior and down by the fish camps, if there is a rain storm coming, then it is not uncommon for the exit road to become "washed out" and impassable.  No telling how many days it takes to get it rebuilt...  Ran into that situation as well, fortunately we were on the "outside" of the washout and not on the "inside" of the wash out.  Maybe an H1 could have made it, maybe a lifted Jeep, not much else.   

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Offline Schroeder

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #18 on: March 02, 2015, 06:53:52 PM »
Well this is coming up on me quick....
If you had a satellite phone and you broke down, who would you call?
Scott

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SHANEA

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #19 on: March 02, 2015, 07:04:30 PM »
GHOST BUSTERS!

MYTH BUSTERS!

How about the gas station, repair shop whatever in Marathon, Terlingua, Alpine, Fort Stockton, etc.  Better have a wad, a big wad, of cash on hand or a BLACK VISA card.  They probably don't take American Express, Diners Club, or Carte Blanche.   It would be interesting to know how much it would cost you to be towed from the farthest fish camp at BGWMA all the way to some repair shed.  I wouldn't even fathom a guesstimate.  I never go as a single vehicle out there for that very reason.  With another vehicle, you could go get parts if it is field repairable or tow you at least part of the way.   

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Offline Schroeder

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #20 on: March 02, 2015, 07:16:48 PM »
I'd be perfectly cool with the risks if it was just me. But I have to be a little more reasonable.  That was my first thought is a second vehicle. That hasn't panned out. My truck is a great truck. She's aging though. She feels strong but I just had to replace the water pump, timing belt and seals. I'm very confident it would be fine ( as always) , but I need a contingency  plan.
Scott

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SHANEA

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #21 on: March 02, 2015, 07:33:26 PM »


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SHANEA

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #22 on: March 02, 2015, 07:36:34 PM »
Well I have personally seen a Dark Brown Ford F250 FOUND ON ROAD DEAD down near the fish camps, blocking our access to the fish camps and the river.  Fortunately, we were on the "access" side and not the egress side, otherwise we'd have been stuck until the truck got moved.  No way around it.  Nada.  Not possible.  No way.  About the worst possible spot for a total failure. Large puddle of some fluid on the ground from underneath, probably tranny fluid.  Towards the end of the day, saw a truck pulling the truck up the road...

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Offline Schroeder

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #23 on: March 08, 2015, 09:37:56 AM »
Looks like Stillwell's plans to be full. I hope the 250 students camp there and not down in Black gap. I've been using google maps to find the sites. Some are kind of hard to find....
http://stillwellstore.com/2015/01/27/2015-started-off-cold/
Scott

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SHANEA

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #24 on: March 08, 2015, 09:43:35 AM »
and many u will not be able to access as the roads will be behind locked gates, especially the ones off the main road.  i used to have the combo to them, no idea what it was now or if it would be the same.

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SHANEA

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #25 on: March 08, 2015, 09:46:22 AM »
wonder if one could camp at the adams ranch?  http://www.texasbighornsociety.org/index.php/work-project-2015

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Offline Schroeder

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #26 on: March 08, 2015, 10:50:23 AM »
I was just about to post about the big horn work project.
Any idea how to find out about locked gates? So all those campsites on the map you uploaded might not be accessible huh?

4,6,13,14 are in cool places. i might stay at 28 and hike dog canyon (the one by the NP). However, it looks like it has a gate there...

How old do you think that map is? I'll definitely get a new one if they have it. I've noticed more guzzlers than the ones on the map. Some I wish were campsites....
Scott

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SHANEA

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #27 on: March 08, 2015, 11:08:40 AM »
Map is probably ten years old or more.

If you get a new one, please post a scanned image of it.

If you get in touch with anyone, they are going to tell you "Access restricted to Maravillas and Horse Canyons, Rio Grande and the headquarters campsite from March 1 to August 31."
http://tpwd.texas.gov/huntwild/hunt/wma/find_a_wma/list/?id=2

When I have tried to deal with them in the past, they are virtually impossible to reach and they are not "big" on people just camping out there.  They are not equipped or supported for it really.  It's a WMA and hunting area and Big Horn Sheep, and those are the primary purposes. 

With that number of people out there from UofH at Stillwell, I'd have to wonder if they are going to do the field camp at BGWMA or around Stillwell.  There is a lot of interesting geology and study topics out there and would of course avoid the crowds and problems with that number of people in Big Bend?     The Stillwell store will be over ran and there won't even be a snickers bar to be had or any TP.

One thing is for certain, I'd keep a full tank of gas and have some spare.  No telling how many of the college kiddos might drive out that way OR how many other universities might be there.  It's not unheard of of Stillwell running out of gas and it's a heck of a long ways to the next station, either PJ or Marathon...  Plus, it wouldn't be unheard of for PJ to run out of gas during spring break either...  To get 500 people out students out there by bus, that would probably be 5-10 transportation vehicles, plus no telling how many faculty and staff will drive out there in vans, trucks, support vehicles, etc.  It's going to be a zoo!


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SHANEA

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #28 on: March 08, 2015, 11:11:22 AM »
Call them up and get them to email you or fax you a map, you might have to call TPWD in Austin to get it.  You would think they would have the internal map online, but I've never found it.   Try calling BGWMA first.

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Offline Schroeder

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Re: Spring Break
« Reply #29 on: March 10, 2015, 03:43:33 PM »
I talked a fella out there. He sent me the attached map. He didn't think those University students would be coming down in Black Gap. He said some of the gates will be closed but you can still get to all the areas but maybe in a round about way. Some of the sites I still can't find on Google Earth. They are the ones without a shelter.
Scott

 


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