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Author Topic: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer  (Read 7597 times)  

Offline Flash

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Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« on: August 05, 2011, 09:34:05 AM »
Here are the custom maps I made for the trip:

Map 1 -- Chisos Mountains Trails
Map 2 -- Juniper Canyon Trail
Map 3 -- Central Dodson Trail
Map 4 -- Western Dodson and Blue Creek Trails

These are intended to be printed on letter-size paper.
Thank you for sharing your map files, Jeff!  :icon_mrgreen:
My son and I plan to hike out to Fresno Creek and back from Wilson Ranch next week and these with a plastic sleeve ought to work great.  :eusa_think:

Offline TexasAggieHiker

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Re: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2011, 10:26:09 AM »
Here are the custom maps I made for the trip:

Map 1 -- Chisos Mountains Trails
Map 2 -- Juniper Canyon Trail
Map 3 -- Central Dodson Trail
Map 4 -- Western Dodson and Blue Creek Trails

These are intended to be printed on letter-size paper.
Thank you for sharing your map files, Jeff!  :icon_mrgreen:
My son and I plan to hike out to Fresno Creek and back from Wilson Ranch next week and these with a plastic sleeve ought to work great.  :eusa_think:
The Dodson Trail in August is going to be ridiculously HOT!!  Dangerously hot in fact.  I would reconsider that plan if I were you.

Offline catz

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Re: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2011, 11:28:30 AM »
I agree with AggieHiker.  If you insist on hiking then, start hiking at very first light, carry lots of water, and wear both a bandana and a wide brimmed hat. There is zero shade on the Dotson, although you can likely find some at Fresno Creek.  You might consider turning around at the high point of the trail--where the best views are--thereby shaving two or three miles off your round trip.  You should make it a point to be back at Homer Wilson by noon, 1 at the latest.
Wake me when it's time to go.

Offline Flash

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Re: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2011, 01:06:33 PM »
@ catz and AggieHiker: Thanks for the feedack. At the risk of possibly getting piled on, let me provide some more details...

We have been planning on going as an overnighter, camping either at the Smoky Creek Trail junction, Fresno Creek junction, or maybe both, if we do two nights. We plan to carry 5-gallons of water between us, start out early, not be in a rush, but make camp before the heat of the day. For shade, we have a 12' x 12' fly we can pitch. Highs next week are supposed to be in the upper 90's. We originally intended to backpack to the South Rim, but the drought has nixed that idea. Based on reports we've read here, this seemed like a feasible Plan B. Would be open to other ideas for 1 or 2 nighter. My son and I have both done plenty of hot weather hiking, so we don't mind hot. Please let me know your thoughts. Thanks, Flash.


Offline TexasAggieHiker

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Re: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2011, 01:54:28 PM »
The heat of the day will begin at daylight.  It'll stay warm and hot all night down in the desert.  The park may not even issue you a permit because of the heat.

Offline Flash

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Re: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2011, 02:42:51 PM »
The heat of the day will begin at daylight.  It'll stay warm and hot all night down in the desert.  The park may not even issue you a permit because of the heat.
Yep, I have told myself that as well. This trail is higher desert, 4200 to 5200', so should not be quite as hot as, say, Indian Head or Grapevine Hills, but still will be pretty warm. Maybe we will end up doing a 1-nighter at Smoky Creek junction only.
 
Plan C is to stay in the Basin and day hike places like Pine Canyon, Upper Burro Pouroff, Apache Canyon, Mule Ears Spring, maybe even try for Casa Grande.

We are aiming to be flexible in our plans and have an adventure nevertheless.

Offline SHANEA

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Offline Casa Grande

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Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2011, 08:08:30 PM »
I don't have any idea what your level of experience is in anything.  I will only say that hiking out in the Sierra Quemada in this heat (I measured 105 along Ross Maxwell yesterday) isn't even my last choice for the OML. No shade. Little to no water. An extremely dangerous time right now.  There is absolutely no room for error. 

Quote
Over-estimating your experience or under-estimating the terrain in a place like Big Bend can lead to serious injury or death.  Hike at your own risk.

Offline badknees

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Re: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2011, 10:59:03 PM »
I too do not know your level of experience and conditioning, but I agree with David...Even if it doesn't kill you, it will be far from enjoyable. If you want a small taste of hot desert, hike out to Mule Ears spring and possibly to the Smoky Creek escarpment and overnight there. Go early and stay hydrated. Be aware that shade will be very scarce along that route as well.
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Offline catz

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Re: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #9 on: August 06, 2011, 11:08:10 AM »
I think your Plan C makes more sense.  And even then I would start any hike in the desert at very first light.
Wake me when it's time to go.

Offline stingrey

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Re: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #10 on: August 06, 2011, 01:11:56 PM »
Flash, Everyone has given sound advice. Like Quicksilver said, no matter what the temps @ PJ, it may be noteably "warmer" elsewhere. When David and James and I were out in the park last, it was 117 @ RGV, but I am pretty sure it was cooler @ PJ.

No matter what you end up doing, seems like you will be in the area when I'm going to be out there with another friend of mine... IF you happen to see some crazy guys "shooting up" at night (with cameras, that is!) or stalking a bear or some other wildlife to get some nice pics, be sure and say hi!

:)
Get busy living, or get busy dying.

Offline iCe

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Re: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2011, 05:03:16 PM »
I wouldn't think of all of these responses as piling on. It's brutally hot in BiBe right now. There has already been a heat related death in the park this year. Nobody want's to see that happen to you and your son. We are just trying to help


I love hiking the desert. I've been thinking about going for weeks now. But with the heat there's now way. Some friends and I were out last month and it was brutal during the day. It's gotten worse. The Basin was an oasis compared to the desert floor. Like Stingray we were in the park for dark skies / night photography. Unfortunately we got clouded out all but one night (kind of unusual but that's how it goes) so we reverted to being tourists and I was the tour guide for most of the trip  :icon_lol:  (nobody else in the group had been there so that left it to me). The little hike to the hot springs was unpleasant...

Offline Flash

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Re: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #12 on: August 07, 2011, 10:29:29 AM »
Thanks for the advice guys!  :icon_wink:

My son and I drove out from Houston to Alpine yesterday and are relaxing in the Hampton Inn this morning.  It was 106 yesterday at Seminole Canyon and 103 at Langtry. The picture below is at the Pecos High Bridge after locating a geocache. It was a cooker.

Around noon today we plan to head down to Study Butte and then on the Basin. We will stay our first night in the Park at the Lodge. I wonder what the saddle at Lost Mine might be like for star gazing tonight?

Will stop by Wilson Ranch to get the reality check on the Dodson. Question: Since the Smokey Creek Junction is higher than PJ, might it not tend to be ever so slightly cooler (100 vs. 105)?  :eusa_think:
« Last Edit: August 07, 2011, 10:45:34 AM by Flash »

Offline Flash

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Re: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #13 on: August 08, 2011, 07:19:05 PM »
We hiked the Upper Burro Mesa Pouroff early this morning which was about 4 miles total. Really liked this hike a lot. Then we drove on to Castolon, Cottonwood Camp, and then Santa Elena Canyon. Like sillies who know better we hiked the SEC trail at 1 pm. This toasted me pretty well, so we drove the 1.25 hours back to the Basin for some good R&R plus shower and nap. Now we are in Lodge again for dinner. 
 

Offline Burn Ban

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Re: Outer Mountain Loop in the summer
« Reply #14 on: August 08, 2011, 08:49:15 PM »
keep it up.  have fun/be safe

 

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