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70 Hours

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Offline RichardM

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Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #45 on: January 19, 2008, 07:09:21 PM »
Where's Geraldo and the inside play by play? I can get the weather stuff myself (j/k)  :ranger:
You're new here.  The rest of us know better than to encourage Shane.  :icon_cool:

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Offline jr ranger

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Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #46 on: January 19, 2008, 07:27:59 PM »
Where's Geraldo and the inside play by play? I can get the weather stuff myself (j/k)  :ranger:
You're new here.  The rest of us know better than to encourage Shane.  :icon_cool:

Hmm, seems to me he needs little encouragement. Posts:  6877 (8.966 per day)   :ranger:
"Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished."

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SHANEA

  • Guest
Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #47 on: January 20, 2008, 02:02:08 PM »
Just got off the cell with Randell.  He is having an awesome time and that's about all I'll say so it won't spoil his trip report.   He was at the Green Gulch communications center.   He did get my message about going to check out the hedge rows and was plugging it into his GPS. 

Actually, the reason I post the pics of the weather, webcam, etc. is that so he has them when he gets back.  He was kind enough to capture the radar, etc. when me and Matt were caught in a huge surprise storm up at Laguna Meadow a couple of years ago.

I'll talk to him again tomorrow on his way home.

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SHANEA

  • Guest
Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #48 on: January 20, 2008, 02:14:33 PM »
It's a wonderful day in the neighborhood...








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SHANEA

  • Guest
Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #49 on: January 21, 2008, 08:34:22 AM »
Randell is on his way home.  He's in Sanderson.  Headed towards JRB (Judge Roy Bean) @ Comstock, then heading up towards I-10 - crossing the Devils River multiple times.

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Offline cjacob

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Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #50 on: January 21, 2008, 08:44:07 AM »
That is a WONDERFUL drive.  I have Friends along that road.  Bakers Crossing is VERY nice.

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Offline randell

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Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #51 on: January 21, 2008, 09:15:30 PM »
That is a WONDERFUL drive.  I have Friends along that road.  Bakers Crossing is VERY nice.

Yes, it is.  I have photos to prove it.  Part one of a most excellent trip report coming shortly...
There's nothing like a good quest to get you intimate with a place. - Tom Clynes

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Offline Al

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Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #52 on: January 21, 2008, 09:31:05 PM »
Randall, welcome back.  Glad you had a great trip!  Pop a couple of photos up and we look forward to your most excellent trip report . . .

Al

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Offline randell

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Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #53 on: January 21, 2008, 09:44:05 PM »
sunset last night

« Last Edit: January 22, 2008, 12:49:08 AM by randell »
There's nothing like a good quest to get you intimate with a place. - Tom Clynes

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Offline Al

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Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #54 on: January 21, 2008, 09:55:46 PM »
Oh yeah.

Al

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Offline STARLITDARKNESS3

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Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #55 on: January 21, 2008, 09:57:20 PM »
Holy Guacamole!!

No words needed Randell.  That picture is magnificent. 
"Are we there yet?"  ... by my Kids

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Offline randell

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Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #56 on: January 21, 2008, 10:15:22 PM »
PART I

Buzzzz.  Jeez!  1:30am sucks!  I had barely gotten 90 minutes of sleep.  Usually it is thoughts of an upcoming trip that keeps me awake.  This time it was just random thoughts.  Oh well, time to get moving.  I quickly showered, grabbed the last few things I needed, and jumped in the rental car for the 652 mile drive.  I had rented a Dodge Caliber because I couldn't take our main vehicle and our "drive to work" car isn't one I would trust on this long of a journey.  I now got to try the Dodge Caliber and make a very long drive...

Mile: 0
Time: 2:00am
Are you kidding!  No cruise control!  This sucks! 

Mile: 93
Time: 3:30am
Location: Columbus, Texas
Listening to: Ton Loc -Funky Cold Medina

Mile 197
Time: 4:55am
Location: Bexar County Limit
Listening to: Def Leopard - Pour Some Sugar On Me
Some nut just started tailgating me flashing his high beams and flicking his turn signal, rudely interrupting my Sour Cream and Onion Pringles chowdown.  I ignored him and he mysteriously slowed down and dropped out of sight.

Mile: 246
Time: still freaking dark
Location: Boerne, Texas
Listening to: The Outlaws - Ghost Riders in the Sky
Gas stop

Mile:393
Time: 7:46am
Listening to: Johnny Cash - Rock Island Line
Location: Rest stop West of Sonora. 
Thankfully it is getting light out.  I was really getting sleepy until I saw the light of day.  It's pretty cold outside, why don't they heat these things?!?!

Mile: 528
Time: 9:30am
Listening to: Kenny Loggins - Footloose
Location: Ft Stockton
Gas stop.  Almost...

Mile: 627
Time: 10:54am
Listening to: Robert Earl Keen - Gringo Honeymoon (which he wrote after visiting Boquillas)
Finally!
Location: Persimmon Gap!!!

I tried to contain myself.  I was on a mission.  I was to spend 2-3 nights on the Marufo Vega trail.  I wanted to get to the trailhead.  After a few miles I couldn't stand it any longer.  I jumped out of the car, ran into the middle of the desert, enjoying the crunch of the rock beneath my feet.  I took a few snapshots and grudgingly went back to the car.




Then I was back on my way to Panther Junction.  Headquarters was under construction so I had to walk around the back to get my solo hiker permit and get my photo taken.  The ranger warned that there had been several recent breakins at the trailhead.  Back in the car I was on my way to the trailhead.  It was a beautiful day.  I gathered the random things I needed from the front seat and tried to hide anything that might look valuable.  This would have been easier if this stupid car had a freaking trunk!  I had pared the contents of my backpack down as much as I thought was possible.  I ditched my 2 man tent for the one man.  I had three days of food and three days of water.  I wasn't sure how long if I wanted to stay two or three days.  Water was the big weight issue.  I wasn't sure about drinking Rio Grande water, but I took my water filter just in case.  I would play it by ear.  I chugged some water, locked up and shouldered my pack. 


It wasn't long before I realized that weight training, walking around the neighborhood, and doing the stairclimber had not prepared me for carrying this heavy of a pack.  My butt started screaming very soon after I started walking down the sand/gravel wash.  I had never had this trouble before.  I think I finally found my tipping point as far as pack weight goes.  I continued on.  The plan I had hatched back at home was to make it 1.8 miles, cache some water, then cache some more later on as I left the trail for an off-trail excursion.  My butt continued to hurt.  Nothing else but my butt, but it was complaining very loudly.  The trail finally left the wash, but then it started going up.  First it was gradual.  Then came the big hit.  The trail went way up and so did the wind.  The wind started gusting badly just about the time I reached a crazy looking section of trail that was narrow and extremely steep, steeper than anything on the South Rim or Mariscal Rim trails.  The wind nearly blew me over several times.  Every time a gust caught my pack just right, it pushed hard - not a good thing on this narrow trail.  I trudged onward, my butt screaming at me. 

I finally reached a flat overlook.  It was here I would make the first cache.  After some consultation with my butt, I decided I would cache half of my water and go in with only 2 gallons.  I knew I would be sleeping off trail and far from the river tonight, but tomorrow evening sometime I would reach the river should I decide to drink from it.  I found a nice bush to hide the water and shouldered my pack once again.  Wow, what a difference 16 pounds makes!  There was definitely a tipping point in that last 16 pounds.  My butt was still mad at me, but not from the current weight.  The trail went up again, then around, then finally flattened out. 

Here I knew where I was.  I had studied the maps and aerial photos so much I knew exactly where I needed to go.  I cut off of the trail and down a wash.  Another wash, then some boulders that I had to climb on all fours to get over.  I carefully judged this scramble making sure I could be back down or around when the time came to leave even though I had already mapped out a different exit possibility.  I rounded the end of a mountain and entered the valley I had been looking for.  More washes to cross.  The route wasn't overgrown but I was still being stuck by lechugilla and other cruel pointy plants regularly - the nature of the desert.  I climbed a few small hills then dropped the pack and ran up to scout out the way.  It looked like I had one more hill to get over.  My butt grumbled.  I fetched my pack, scrambled up the hill and found a decent spot for camp.  I saw what looked like the cliff I was seeking.  I dropped my pack, grabbed my daypack and camera and started picking my way to the top. 

Ahhh, there were the Sierra del Carmens.  And here was...I swallowed hard...my stomach sank...and a very, very big grin spread over my face.  It was magnificent...
« Last Edit: January 21, 2008, 11:13:10 PM by randell »
There's nothing like a good quest to get you intimate with a place. - Tom Clynes

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Offline Al

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Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #57 on: January 21, 2008, 10:24:47 PM »
Wow!  All I can say, Is WOW!

Al

P.S.  Post your pictures a little larger, por favor.

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Offline Al

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Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #58 on: January 21, 2008, 10:27:47 PM »
The Del Carmens picture is the best I've ever seen and I'm kind of into the Carmens.

Al

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Offline badknees

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Re: 70 Hours
« Reply #59 on: January 21, 2008, 10:30:26 PM »
Welcome back, great report so far. Don't stop now.

I'm betting you didn't drink the river water :eusa_whistle: :eusa_whistle:
Not all those who wander are lost.
J.R.R. Tolkien

Through the Mirror
http://mirrormagic.com

 


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