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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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Dominguez Mountain Pass

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Offline Undertaker

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Dominguez Mountain Pass
« Reply #15 on: June 13, 2007, 09:04:13 PM »
I am starting to be concerned about hiking with Obsession?
Visiting BB since 1966, nothing like being lost and finding heaven.

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Offline Drifter

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Dominguez Mountain Pass
« Reply #16 on: June 13, 2007, 09:09:05 PM »
woops, my mistake. Allow me to restate.  I will bring a map and a couple of bucks for beer.
If you climb mountains, no explanation is necessary, if you don't , no explanation is possible.

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Offline TheWildWestGuy

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Dominguez Mountain Pass
« Reply #17 on: June 13, 2007, 09:54:59 PM »
Wow this is getting more exciting by the day.  Now I just HAVE to go down this canyon and try to find Jack's route.  I never knew Jack or met him but will use his sage advice on my next trip to the Park.  At the very least it will be exciting and a bit dangerous to try this little known route in this little-visited area of a huge National Park that is so far off most people's radar that even most native Texans have never visited it.  Most of the people around H-town couldn't find it on a map even if you gave them clue's off the state quarter.   It's that big thingy that hangs down into Mexico... TWWG

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Offline mule ears

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cut off canyon
« Reply #18 on: June 14, 2007, 06:30:22 AM »
My notes from '89 are very much similar to Jack's that Robert posted above.

We came into the wash from the south where the spring is marked on the map (south of pt. 4685 TWWG's Sugarloaf Mtn.  Where did you get this name?) and the trail is incorrectly marked as leaving the wash headed west.  From there down canyon water ran off and on for over half a mile with several 60-70 foot drops that we had to climb around on the left (looking down canyon).  One of the big pour offs had a huge tongue like stalagtite deposit hanging down it, this must be the big pour off.  I don't remember (and my notes don't say) that we dropped down into the bottom of the canyon as Jack describes  
Quote
Once down, you'll be in a steep walled canyon with a little scrambling and hiking, you'll be out to the rock chimney in no time
 We did work our way down and out onto the Smoky creek plain on the left/south side without any trouble but we may have stayed higher as we were working our way back around the front of the escarpment back to Smoky spring at about the 3200' level.

I too never met Jack but he was one hell of an explorer and always very kind and exact in his sharing of information about the park.
temperatures exceed 100 degrees F
minimum 1 gallon water per person/day
no shade, no water
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Offline TheWildWestGuy

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Dominguez Mountain Pass
« Reply #19 on: June 14, 2007, 09:04:04 AM »
So it sounds do-able but a little scary for a solo hiker, in other words perfect.
I don't know where the name Sugarloaf Mountain came from originally (maybe Ross Maxwell?) and I couldn't find anything on it when I googled it.  But it does resemble a loaf of bread when viewed from the high dry pass which connects Fisk Canyon to the Smokey Creek Trail.   Perhaps I just made this name up myself or heard someone else on this page use it?
Anyway using my awesome powers I now pronounce this peak 4685' to be called Sugarloaf Mtn.   Unless someone else knows what it's really called... TWWG

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Offline mule ears

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Dominguez Mountain Pass
« Reply #20 on: June 14, 2007, 04:52:29 PM »
TWWG,
you are right, I found Sugarloaf Mtn. on the maps in Ross Maxwell's "The Big Bend of the Rio Grande".  It is a very distinctive flat topped peak.

As to the walk down and around "the cut off canyon" you'll be fine as long as you don't have your 80 pound pack full  :wink: , even then it should be no problem.
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 TheWildWestGuy

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Dominguez Mountain Pass
« Reply #21 on: June 14, 2007, 09:40:19 PM »
So that's where I heard (read) it.   I knew I wasn't just mixing it up with some other place (Google turned up several Sugarloaf Mtn's in Texas but none in BBNP that I could find anyway).   From now on we on this page will refer to this peak as Sugarloaf Mountain and honor Ross Maxwell for naming it.  It sounds a bit steep and scary for a solo hiker so for my next trip in the Fall I think I will plan to make a basecamp somewhere downstream from the Junction sign and drop my 80#pack and gear and then slackpack through the canyon and back to basecamp in time for some chill-time.   This translates to basically reading short books by "a Hiker" under Alpenglow off the peaks while sipping a frosty beverage and searching my legs above and below the gator-point for prickly pear or cholla spines.   Sometimes I find the spines broken off below skin-level weeks or even months after I return from a trip.  It's all part of the fun of bushwacking into who-knows-where... TWWG

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Offline mule ears

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Re: there are several different ways
« Reply #22 on: June 18, 2007, 04:48:56 PM »
Quote from: "mule ears"
If you mean the Dominguez Mtn. pass to be the area between 5156 (Dominguez) and 4586 past the point 4226 where the topo shows an area of green (sorry no trees there) Over the top (great views of ET and Backbone), just west of 4226.


Here is a picture from the top where the map shows some green



Sorry for the quality, old slides scanned in.
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 TheWildWestGuy

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Dominguez Mountain Pass
« Reply #23 on: June 18, 2007, 07:44:05 PM »
That's a good view of the seldom-seen West side of the Tusk.

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Offline Drifter

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Dominguez Mountain Pass
« Reply #24 on: June 19, 2007, 09:23:48 AM »
Thanks Mule Ears, that is exactly what I thought the saddle would look like.  I will be there on Nov. 6 or 7.  Do you have any photos of the area south of San Jac. spring?  I was wondering if I could make it from Smoky spring back to the truck at ET campsite in one long day.  If the brush is too thick I need to rethink my loop and shorten it and go with the original plan to only do the Dom. Mt. loop.(ET to the Dom. pass, to Dom Spring, to Fisk canyon, to the Northen route back ET and the jeep)
If you climb mountains, no explanation is necessary, if you don't , no explanation is possible.

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Offline mule ears

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Dominguez Mountain Pass
« Reply #25 on: June 19, 2007, 02:17:11 PM »
Drifter,
that would be one hell of a day from Smoky spring back to the ET campsite south of the Punta de la Sierra.  Looks like 20-25 miles.  You can certainly do it, the brush is no problem at all, widely spaced creosote and prickly pear, fast walking.  The area just south of San. Jacinto spring is a bad lands type with hills of volcanic ash.  You will need to swing south of two points of hills coming out from the Punta one SW of pt. 2725 and the next south of pt. 2839 then head straight to the north of Cow Heaven Mtn.

This picture is taken from near the first set of hills (see above) SW of pt. 2725, looking NW.  You can see the points of the Mule Ears on the left.  The San Jac. wash comes through the low gap in the middle.  I believe the flat topped peak on the middle right is TWWG's Sugarloaf Mtn.



Sounds like quite a loop.  ET campsite north around ET down to and over Dom. Mtn., then Jacks' Pass to Smoky spring? or north up Fisk canyon and down Smoky Creek cutoff to Smoky spring?  How many days?
temperatures exceed 100 degrees F
minimum 1 gallon water per person/day
no shade, no water
http://40yearsofwalking.wordpress.com/

 


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