Friends of Big Bend National Park
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.

+-Calendar for sale

 2019 BigBendChat Calendar on sale now!


Mesa Questions

  • 19 Replies
  • 13675 Views
*

Offline catz

  • Golden Eagle
  • Mountain Lion
  • *
  • 1039
  • Old enough to know better, but...
Re: Mesa Questions
« Reply #15 on: January 28, 2015, 10:48:12 AM »
After reviewing the original post by Tophfar, he doesn't seem to be talking about going all the way to the point because he wants to work his way down to the entrance of Santa Elena.  Obviously, the entrance is way before the point, which overlooks the canyon exit.  I sort of recall where there is a route down to the river at or near the canyon entrance.  I don't think there is a sign there but there is a clear trail that goes off that way.  I assume that trail is primarily used by river runners.
Wake me when it's time to go.

*

Offline tophfar

  • Kangaroo Rat
  • *
  • 2
Re: Mesa Questions
« Reply #16 on: January 28, 2015, 12:49:51 PM »
Sorry, some of my terminology was off.

Yes, to the point is what I was talking about. Then the initial idea would be to follow the rim back west as much as possible to make it down to the entrance camp along the river. Does that help clear things up?

Some quick background, this group is well conditioned and most of the group has a reasonable amount of backpacking experience, with me being the most seasoned. Half of us have done the OML before, we just spent 5 days doing the Clark Range in Yosemite, we've done sections of the CDT and OHT.

So we don't mind the long day, and if we don't quite make to the point on day 1 that will be fine we can make that call as the afternoon goes along. And if we setup camp in the dark... it's what headlamps are for right?

My two main concerns were the water issue, and the feasibility from following the rim of the canyon from the point back to the entrance camp on the river. But if the river is fine for drinking (treated of course), then we don't mind if its a little bit of slow going. Just as long as we can make the water. And if it's better if we back track our steps before heading down to the river, then that is fine also. We are pretty flexible. We just want to enjoy being out there, and see the things that most people don't get a chance to.

I was initially afraid we'd be at least 3 to start the hike, and was dreading that kind of weight. So I'm thinking now 2 gallons a piece. That should get us to the point, then down to the river, and detouring to tinajas if necessary. We can resupply our water there. If on day 2 it does not look like that will work, we can bail out to Lajitas on that second gallon. Does that sounds like a reasonable plan?

And I definitely have been going through all the trip reports on the site. There has been tons of helpful information.

Mule_Ears: I loved the trip report. And I really liked the idea/route to do Lajitas to the Basin. I'm going to have to keep that in mind for a future trip, and will use that post as a reference if you don't mind. That looked awesome.


*

Offline catz

  • Golden Eagle
  • Mountain Lion
  • *
  • 1039
  • Old enough to know better, but...
Re: Mesa Questions
« Reply #17 on: January 28, 2015, 04:05:03 PM »
We seem to be split as to the feasibility of drinking (treated) river water. Some of us have done so and have had no ill effects.  Others say no.  If you are wary, one possibility would be to cache a gallon apiece on the way out to the point, near where I mentioned earlier that a trail splits off and goes down to the river.

I've never tried (or heard of anybody doing so) following the canyon rim westward from the point.  Anything is possible, I suppose, but I would imagine that you would have significant difficulties with the side drainages.
Wake me when it's time to go.

*

Offline mule ears

  • Administrator
  • Mountain Lion
  • *
  • 4385
  • "He had to leave Texas but won't say why" McMurtry
    • 40 years of walking
Re: Mesa Questions
« Reply #18 on: January 28, 2015, 04:56:06 PM »
I have read some reports of people walking sections of the rim between the point and entrance camp but haven't seen one going the whole way.  It looks like about a 9-10 mile day depending on how much winding around you have to do around the washes that flow into the canyon.  The terrain will be rough with lots of baby head rocks that are tough on the feet and ankles.

There is a little visited tinaja at 29 10' 45"N  103 39' 22" W in the first major drainage west of the point that you could swing by and get some water if you get some decent water info before going or can see water at Rana or Blanca as you walk by the first day.

It will also be hard to find a place to roll the sleeping bags out near the point that is some razor sharp limestone up there.
temperatures exceed 100 degrees F
minimum 1 gallon water per person/day
no shade, no water
http://40yearsofwalking.wordpress.com/

*

Offline Hayduke

  • Coyote
  • *
  • 155
Re: Mesa Questions
« Reply #19 on: January 28, 2015, 08:38:56 PM »
I've done almost all of the hike from Entrance camp to the point, but never all in one stretch.  The difficult part of this route is that there's no long stretch of continous rim - you're always crossing brushy drainages or diverting around side canyons.

From the point to the most prominent side canyon the way is up & down crossing brushy washes & can be a tedious slog. I've done almost all of this section, lacking a small part in the middle. I'm not terribly enthused about going back to finish it. This is definitely not the same as the hike from Bruja to the point which is decent open walking for most of its length.

From the most prominent side canyon to Entrance camp the drainages are more deeply incised forming generally brief side canyons. You can follow the rim by hiking in and out. While I've done this I'm not sure every view is worth the effort, and walking inland is more direct. You might consider taking a stroll out to the point where you can see Rockslide rapids and - if you're lucky- a boater going through them. 

 


©COPYRIGHT NOTICE

All photographs and content posted by members are to be considered copyrighted by their respective owners and may not be used for any purposes, commercial or otherwise, without permission.

+-Calendar For Sale

 2019 BigBendChat Calendar on sale now!

Powered by EzPortal

Facebook Comments