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Telephone Canyon/Strawhouse doable as a one-nighter?

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Offline congahead

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Telephone Canyon/Strawhouse doable as a one-nighter?
« on: October 28, 2019, 07:25:45 AM »
Considering doing west Telephone Canyon to Strawhouse and down Strawhouse this winter.

Would like to do it in two days/one night.

Will carry only a few essentials (ultralightweight) plus all the water we'll need.

Am a very fit and experienced 54-year-old desert hiker; will be doing it with my extraordinarily fit 25-year-old son.

Our navigation skills are up to the task.

Will have a shuttle so can get started early on day one.

Wondering if the 24 miles is doable in two days or if that's too ambitious because not all miles are created equal.

I know from reading various guides and trip reports that some of that route is slow going because of both navigational challenges and impenetrable brush.

Would like to hear from people who have actually been on those routes, not from those who have just read all the same stuff I've read.

Thanks in advance.
"The animals here will generally try to avoid you, but the plants will hurt you every chance they get."

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Offline marufo

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Re: Telephone Canyon/Strawhouse doable as a one-nighter?
« Reply #1 on: October 28, 2019, 09:51:39 AM »
I tried going up Strawhouse and then west on Telephone Canyon a number of years back and bailed after the first day. The lower part of Strawhouse is sandy/gravelly tiring to walk, and then when it turns into more of a canyon there were lots of boulders to climb around and I couldn't get a GPS signal to know how much progress I had made, which was concerning since I was depending on getting to my water cache at the Telephone Canyon trailhead by the end of the next day. Just my experience.

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Offline mule ears

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  • "He had to leave Texas but won't say why" McMurtry
    • 40 years of walking
Re: Telephone Canyon/Strawhouse doable as a one-nighter?
« Reply #2 on: October 28, 2019, 11:16:00 AM »
It is very doable.  The biggest hurdle is the shuttle to the TC2 campsite/trailhead, it is a long and slow drive.  I have hiked up Strawhouse and then west on Telephone canyon and your direction is easier both in the route finding and in the down hill walk on the Strawhouse.  There really is no impenetrable brush, the worst can be the short climb out of Telephone canyon to the top of the Strawhouse drainages but it is very well cairned and should be fairly clear.  Walking down Strawhouse makes the route finding  a slam dunk, just follow the wash until you hit the road.  Same with the TC trail after you cross the Dead Horse mtn. and hit the wash, just follow it down hill until you come to the GIANT cairn that marks the Strawhouse trail jct.

There are some boulders to work around midway down the Strawhouse but you can easily work through them.  It is near where the trail exits the wash for a bit on the Topo map but I didn't actually see that diversion and it was probably for horses back in the day that couldn't negotiate the boulders. 

If you lookclosely at this picture you can see both the giant cairn with the red rock on the top but cairns leading up the slope on the Strawhouse trail.


Look for my trip report from 2004 if you haven't already seen it.
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 congahead

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Re: Telephone Canyon/Strawhouse doable as a one-nighter?
« Reply #3 on: October 29, 2019, 11:07:38 AM »
Thank you both, Marufo and ME.
"The animals here will generally try to avoid you, but the plants will hurt you every chance they get."

 


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