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Author Topic: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions  (Read 2168 times)  

Offline catz

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Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« on: January 06, 2012, 10:20:08 AM »
Three of us are considering hiking Telephone Canyon.  The basic idea is to go in 5 or 6 miles and set up a base camp.  The next day, we would day hike as far to the eastern end as we could go and still make it back to the base camp for night 2.  We would then hike out on Day 3.

How difficult is this hike?  Is (are) there any decent campsites?  How far in are they?  I am also wondering about how far it is to the junction with the Strawhouse Trail.   I am assuming there is no water along this trail or nearby along Strawhorse--correct?  Any suggestions, cautions, whatever other info would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks!

Catz
Wake me when it's time to go.

Offline Al

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Re: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2012, 10:25:58 AM »
I have only day hiked in from the Telephone Canyon primitive campsite a few miles.  Campsites shouldn't be an issue, you're right about no water. I'll let the more aggressive hikers address the rest.

Al

Online mule ears

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Re: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2012, 02:47:24 PM »
The hike is not difficult.  Well marked from the Old Ore road up to the top of the Dead Horse mountains and then less well marked down into Telephone canyon.  Once in the canyon you are just walking the wash with no cairns.  There is/was a huge cairn marking the jct. with the Strawhouse trail.

We camped in the wash at the base of the western side of the Dead Horse mtns. (about 4 miles in) and had thought about camping on the top but couldn't find a site out of the wind but can't remember if there was one anyway, up on that sharp and rough limestone.

Once down into Telephone canyon there are plenty of places to camp in the gravel wash which looks like this, which is looking NW at the mouth of Heath Creek canyon coming in from the north and about 7 miles in.



No water at all along Telephone or Strawhouse trails.

The junction with the Strawhouse trail is 10 miles in and I would say that the steep, sharply vegetated climb up over the pass to it is not worth the effort.  I would maybe consider going up into one of the canyons to the north instead (Heath, Margaret Basin, North Telephone), as well as going as far east as the last narrow section at Hubert ridge (15 miles in).
« Last Edit: January 06, 2012, 03:14:22 PM by mule ears »
temperatures exceed 100 degrees F
minimum 1 gallon water per person/day
no shade, no water
http://40yearsofwalking.wordpress.com/

Offline Flash

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Re: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2012, 04:24:00 PM »
I found an article about a horseback trail ride along Telephone Canyon from Adams Ranch that I enjoyed reading...

http://www.sulross.edu/cbbs/basics-adams.php

Although the article is a bit vague in spots, some the places described sound interesting.

 :icon_mrgreen:

Online mule ears

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Re: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2012, 04:54:14 PM »
I found an article about a horseback trail ride along Telephone Canyon from Adams Ranch that I enjoyed reading...

http://www.sulross.edu/cbbs/basics-adams.php

Although the article is a bit vague in spots, some the places described sound interesting.

 :icon_mrgreen:

Nice find Flash!  You are really researching this side of the park.  I need to look into more of those Center for Big Bend Studies publications.  Thanks.   :13:
temperatures exceed 100 degrees F
minimum 1 gallon water per person/day
no shade, no water
http://40yearsofwalking.wordpress.com/

Offline steelfrog

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Re: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #5 on: January 12, 2012, 10:57:54 AM »
Anyone know anything about Sue Peaks?  Look very intriguing on topo

Offline jeffblaylock

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Re: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2012, 12:46:34 PM »
Jeff Blaylock
www.jeffblaylock.com

"We'll be back, someday soon. We will return, someday, and when we do the gritty
splendor and the complicated grandeur of Big Bend will still be here. Waiting for us."--Ed Abbey

Offline Juan Cuatro Lados

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Re: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2012, 04:35:59 PM »
Re: Sue Peaks, hiked up cross country from an unmarked spot on the Ore Rd.
so as to wake up on top the Dead Horses to celebrate my 50th
birthday.  No trail of course, razor sharp limestone underfoot in many
places and much desert growth to rip flesh, but a beautiful hike and
extraordinary views up the Tornillo drainage etc.  Near the top the giant
daggers are so thick it's very much like walking throught a forest, making
it entirely possible to lose your way back down and if you do, then it's also
very possible to get cliffed out.  Near the top there's a small grove
of pine trees, hope they're still struggling along.  At night, from the top of the
southmost peak we could see a glow in the eastern sky that had to be from Del Rio,
and way off to the south were lights from Muzquiz, we assumed.  It's surprisingly
lush up there, beautiful stands of grasses and totally undisturbed.  Well worth the effort ........

Offline steelfrog

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Re: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2012, 04:43:18 PM »
Whetting my appetite!

Offline Flash

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Re: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #9 on: January 12, 2012, 08:42:12 PM »
Anyone know anything about Sue Peaks?  Look very intriguing on topo
Yes, very intriguing indeed.  :eusa_drool:

Check out this crazy drainage junction to the south-southwest of the south peak ( 29.40577 -102.99442 ) in Google Earth. Next trace the winding drainage westward to this insane pouroff thingy (  29.418711 -103.015146 ).  :icon_eek:

Found guy's panorama from on top of Sue Peaks with a short description of his hike:

http://www.panoramio.com/photo/59743629

 :icon_cool:


Offline TedMT

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Re: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #10 on: January 07, 2013, 05:17:20 PM »
Mule Ears, thanks for your knowledgable comments, and for the photo of Telephone Canyon. "There's something about" TC, as Edward Abbey would say -- something sublime. I hiked to the trail highpoint and back on a memorable afternoon years ago, and have always wanted to return and see the Canyon to the end.

Catz, your suggestion about setting up a base camp from which to hike the rest of the canyon and back, may be the optimal way to do it. Thanks!

Are there any, uh, safety issues? I.e., is it a corridor?

Offline Juan Cuatro Lados

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Re: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2013, 09:07:58 AM »
Safety issues?  Well the park service has hauled several bodies out of there over the years, folks who got lost and had no water, you're talking about an extremely rough place.

Never heard much about any drug trafficking etc., probably more Border Patrol recons now than traffickers, if any. 

Watch for the old dam at the top of the first hill as it leaves the Ore Rd., also it's interesting to note the section of well-built road after you start down from the crest of the highest hills into TC itself.

Some of the canyons along the way, North Telephone Canyon for example, I have never (worked at BIBE over 20 years) known anyone who's gone in there, so regards trafficking - quien sabe?

It's worth it ...



Offline WL2

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Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #12 on: January 08, 2013, 11:29:33 AM »
Okie mentioned a radio tower. But no one I have talked to knows anything a about it.  Is there anyone else who has seen it?

Offline Juan Cuatro Lados

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Re: Hiking Telephone Canyon Questions
« Reply #13 on: January 08, 2013, 08:30:08 PM »
There's are radio antennas etc. up there unless they've been taken down in recent years, if memory serves, it's on the right hand peak as faced from the Ore Rd.  Not a tall tower, what's there is fairly unobtrusive.  Park personnel gave it the good fight to remove what's there and prevent more from being installed but apparently it's a strategically important high point for a radio repeater and Homeland Security rules the land these days. 

 

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