Anza Borrego

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93 2-3 Day Trip Recomme...
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24 days ago

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22 Anza Borrego Super B...
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7/5/2016

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86 Wikwip...
21 days ago

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21 days ago
Topic:
Wikwip

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Topic: Wikwip
Is this the cave near McCain Valley?
24 days ago
Topic:
Not enough rangers

Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Topic: Not enough rangers
There was a disturbing amount of litter, graffiti, vandalism, and campfire damage in a couple places recently.

I don’t know if it is due to less Rangers or more idiots or a combo of both.
7/16/2018
Topic:
Wikwip

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: Wikwip
dsefcik wrote:
It's on private property, fence line signs state "trespassers will be shot, survivors will be shot again"...plenty of other interesting things in the desert to see.

Haha. Reminds me of someones watermelon patch signs.
7/16/2018
Topic:
Wikwip

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: Wikwip
It's on private property, fence line signs state "trespassers will be shot, survivors will be shot again"...plenty of other interesting things in the desert to see.
7/16/2018
Topic:
Wikwip

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: Wikwip
Wikwip has been tossed into a couple conversations I'm having. Anyone been there?
7/14/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

DesertWRX
DesertWRX
Posts: 128
No water in our area. We are between Middle Willows and 3rd Crossings, which had water.
7/12/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
DesertWRX wrote:
Our little group was set up at the earthquake station on Monkey Hill. Zero sheep. There is some talk about closing some sites that consistently have a lack of sheep.

Is there water at that site?
7/12/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

DesertWRX
DesertWRX
Posts: 128
Our little group was set up at the earthquake station on Monkey Hill. Zero sheep. There is some talk about closing some sites that consistently have a lack of sheep.
7/10/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
ziphius wrote:
Tommy, I met a park biologist (Jeff Manning) at this year's BHS count check-in. He noted that the park is ramping up the number of trail cameras to be deployed in the park, though he didn't address the BHS count specificially. They hope to eventually have 200+ cameras throughout the park. Jeff was interested in enlisting backcountry travelers into participating in the program (retrieve + replace batteries / SD cards). I can send you his contact info if you want. - Jim


I might be interested in that as well. I have joked about doing it for fun.
7/9/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 791
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 791
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
ziphius wrote:
Tommy, I met a park biologist (Jeff Manning) at this year's BHS count check-in. He noted that the park is ramping up the number of trail cameras to be deployed in the park, though he didn't address the BHS count specificially. They hope to eventually have 200+ cameras throughout the park. Jeff was interested in enlisting backcountry travelers into participating in the program (retrieve + replace batteries / SD cards). I can send you his contact info if you want. - Jim


I would be interested in volunteering for a program like that. Kudos to you all that spend your 4th out in the heat. Would be willing to help out with the count but have family commitments that make that weekend unavailable.
7/9/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Tommy, I met a park biologist (Jeff Manning) at this year's BHS count check-in. He noted that the park is ramping up the number of trail cameras to be deployed in the park, though he didn't address the BHS count specificially. They hope to eventually have 200+ cameras throughout the park. Jeff was interested in enlisting backcountry travelers into participating in the program (retrieve + replace batteries / SD cards). I can send you his contact info if you want. - Jim
7/8/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 791
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 791
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Nice to see water back at Rattlesnake. Great trail cam pics, Daren. So does the park ever place temporary July 4th trail cams at the guzzlers scattered about the Vallecito and Pinyon Mts? That would seem like an easy way to improve on the total park sheep population count. Maybe even a count I could participate in smile
7/6/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
dsefcik wrote:
The temps in these photos from 2 years ago were with the camera in open sunshine and the shade shelter temps were around 112

https://www.darensefcik.com/Photography/Anza-Borrego-Desert-State-Park/Bighorn-Sheep-Count-2016/

--


Still good info to have. I'll put Rattle Snake on my list for next year.
7/6/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
The temps in these photos from 2 years ago were with the camera in open sunshine and the shade shelter temps were around 112

https://www.darensefcik.com/Photography/Anza-Borrego-Desert-State-Park/Bighorn-Sheep-Count-2016/

--
7/6/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
dsefcik wrote:
The camera was in the shade/covered brush mostly, especially when pointed at the water. Our day temps with the thermometer under our shade tarp were 95/95/100 for the three days. Normally temps are 112+. If the count was this weekend things would have been different.

Perhaps the 113 the camera was out of the shade. Most of the temps were inline with what you said. Still cool to have the info.
7/6/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
The camera was in the shade/covered brush mostly, especially when pointed at the water. Our day temps with the thermometer under our shade tarp were 95/95/100 for the three days. Normally temps are 112+. If the count was this weekend things would have been different.
7/5/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
I've noticed that my trail camera temperature readings are notoriously too high when the unit gets any sunlight on it. This isn't unexpected, as official temperature readings for any location are supposed to be taken in shade. The 113 reading for that date / location is probably an artifact of sunlight hitting it. The temperature at lower elevations that day was not that high.
7/5/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Notice the temperature readout on the pictures. Looks like July 1 was the hottest day. Nice set-up.
Edit June 29 had 113.......
edited by Britain on 7/5/2018
7/5/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Rocko1 wrote:
Awesome pictures. Love that game cam. What make/model is that?

Browning RECON FORCE FHD PLATINUM BTC7FHDP
7/5/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Awesome pictures. Love that game cam. What make/model is that?
7/4/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Those game cam pics are great. I like the other critters it caught too. Glad the spring had water.
7/4/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
dsefcik wrote:
Britain wrote:
dsefcik wrote:
Britain wrote:
Hope you don't mind I shared your cam shots link on my FB page.

That is fine...what is the link?

https://www.darensefcik.com/Photography/Anza-Borrego-Desert-State-Park/Bighorn-Sheep-Count-2018/
I meant your FB page link...or is it private?

Only friends...
https://www.facebook.com/vern.britain/posts/10214822609931320
edited by Britain on 7/4/2018
7/4/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Britain wrote:
dsefcik wrote:
Britain wrote:
Hope you don't mind I shared your cam shots link on my FB page.

That is fine...what is the link?

https://www.darensefcik.com/Photography/Anza-Borrego-Desert-State-Park/Bighorn-Sheep-Count-2018/
I meant your FB page link...or is it private?
7/4/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
dsefcik wrote:
Britain wrote:
Hope you don't mind I shared your cam shots link on my FB page.

That is fine...what is the link?

https://www.darensefcik.com/Photography/Anza-Borrego-Desert-State-Park/Bighorn-Sheep-Count-2018/
Did you take the big lens?
edited by Britain on 7/4/2018
7/4/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Britain wrote:
Hope you don't mind I shared your cam shots link on my FB page.

That is fine...what is the link?
7/4/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
ziphius wrote:
Great photos Daren. Congrats on getting a spotted skunk on camera, I'm still waiting for one. Have you ever recorded BHS using the water at night? I imagine fear of mountain lions might preclude night ventures?
Yeah the skunk, lizard, squirrel, fox, etc were nice to get. I have only used the trail cam twice and no BHS at night recorded.
7/4/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

rockhopper
rockhopper
Posts: 412
Daren, Great trail cam photos! Super efforts put in by all the volunteers. Maybe some year I can pull it off and join in. btw I am going to start joining in with the rain dance and pray for some monsoonal moisture for all of those full time wonderful desert creatures.
7/4/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Great photos Daren. Congrats on getting a spotted skunk on camera, I'm still waiting for one. Have you ever recorded BHS using the water at night? I imagine fear of mountain lions might preclude night ventures?
7/4/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
dsefcik wrote:
Britain wrote:
Pretty awesome cam shots. Was anything done to the springs to rehab it somewhat?
We dug it out a bit to give it some depth but overall it was fine. It seemed to refill over a few hours enough that several BHS could get water, we never saw it get completely dry.

Hope you don't mind I shared your cam shots link on my FB page.
edited by Britain on 7/4/2018
7/4/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Britain wrote:
Pretty awesome cam shots. Was anything done to the springs to rehab it somewhat?
We dug it out a bit to give it some depth but overall it was fine. It seemed to refill over a few hours enough that several BHS could get water, we never saw it get completely dry.
7/4/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Pretty awesome cam shots. Was anything done to the springs to rehab it somewhat?
7/4/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Great reaports everybody....I would concur that the wind on Friday was pretty bad, we had to re-enforce our shade shelter to keep it up. Day temps were 95/100 and night temps I did not pay attention to other than to say it was cooler than normal. We saw BHS each day with a few repeats and several collared/tagged BHS. Lamb count was way down, we normally see a lot of lambs but this year was only 8.

Here are a few photos and many more can be seen here:

https://www.darensefcik.com/Photography/Anza-Borrego-Desert-State-Park/Bighorn-Sheep-Count-2018/

























Total Mylar Balloons this trip - 3
7/3/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
That hill climb to the 4th grove count site is daily during the count after they hike all the way in. I actually enjoyed it last year when I counted at 4th due to the views.

Count was up slightly mainly due to Rattlesnake having sheep this year compared to last. Looking forward to Dsefcik’s report. The rest of the sites combined were about the same.

There was concern with the lamb survival rate this year being low. According to the data only 20% of this years lambs were still alive.

BPC has very little water this year. The water level has not always coincided with rainfall totals from the previous winter. The Canyonn is being choked with brush potentially drawing up the water.
edited by Buford on 7/3/2018
7/3/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

tekewin
tekewin
Posts: 99
Impressive. Is the count up or down from last year?

I had a hard time seeing the sheep in a couple of those zoomed photos. Man are they hard to spot sometimes.

I would be interested in this next year if I am in town.
7/3/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Nice photos Buford; they really capture the scale and difficulty of the job. I was hoping for a collared lizard, none this year! Maybe I'll try to join you at 2nd grove for a little change next time.
7/3/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
All zoom pictures were taken holding a cell phone in one hand through the 10x binocular eye piece in the other hand.

First sheep on Day 1:


Three more sheep, you can see the collar on one:


Showing why it is so tough to see the sheep, I think there are 5 in the image:


4th Grove team hiking up to the tarp, gives you an idea how remote and high up the count site is:


Baja Collared:


Rams on the hike out:

edited by Buford on 7/3/2018
edited by Buford on 7/3/2018
7/3/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Nice meeting you ziphius.

I agree about vetting the backpacking teams better. They did a more thorough job this year vetting backpacking people, but there is room for improvement. People over estimate their ability or underestimate the heat or what a hike really is.

New this year was all backcountry teams were to have an experienced counter, no teams of all first timers. This was my 4th count. I was assigned to lead a team of three first timers to BPC 3rd grove. The 4th grove team was all people who had counted before.

We left a little after 3:15 for the hike up. One member was already really suffering about half way to first grove. We got to 1st grove and he made the smart decision to turn around, otherwise I would have had to tell him he shouldn’t continue. A different team member offered to walk out with him. I asked if he was really sure he wanted to walk him out, and he said yes. I was prepared to walk the one guy out then hike up solo to meetup with the rest of the team later. Of our team that bailed, the guy that suffered and was forced to turn around did talk to Mike and got reassigned to the trailhead. I talked to him after and he did enjoy counting from there.

Myself and the remaining team member hiked up with the 4th grove team with no remaining issues.

First day was tough with the wind, but we kept our tarp up. We didn’t see sheep until 2:00 when they appeared out of no where. We watched the herd most of the afternoon. The group included 3 tagged ewes. We were sure 4th grove saw them too, but we found out later they did not see any sheep on day 1.

Day 2 we saw most likely the same herd. Tough to tell at a distance with just binoculars and no spotting scope. We assume it was the same group by the tagged sheep with them and similar group makeup. They also appeared first thing in the morning in the location the group from day 1 bedded down for the night.

Day 3 we only saw one sheep at a long, long distance during the count. We left after 12:00 for an easy hike out. On the hike out we saw a group of rams up really close.

Overall the weather was very temperate for the count. It was chilly at night in the Canyon bottom. My count partner was great. It was a little tough counting with only two people. I need to get better at describing sheep to distinguish between repeats. I am good at spotting them and dividing into ewe/ram/lamb/myearling/fyearling buckets. Notable non sheep sitings were a Baja Collared Lizard, Chuckwalla, and a couple bird species I already forgot the names of.
7/3/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
I was at Big Spring this year with Gary, Randy, and John. Temperatures were cool, a high of 86 on the first day when the wind was ferocious. We quickly abandoned the idea of putting up a tarp upon arriving on site. Fortunately, we had the option of crawling into and under boulder overhangs in a couple of different spots. The larger boulder we referred to as ‘the fridge’ because that’s where we stored a bunch of stuff in deep shade. Days 2 and 3 reached the low 90s. Here is a link to the Big Spring count photos.

We logged 11 sheep (9 ewes and 2 lambs) and were lucky that Gary had ventured up to the top of the ridgeline to take a pee, which resulted in the sighting between us and Middle Spring. The sheep were closer to our site and we saw ‘em first, so we got to log them. There were 4 marked animals total, 2 with collars and the rest with ear tags. On Day 2 at 0820 hrs, Randy had a brief sighting of a mountain lion (!) a few hundred yards away. It was gone by the time he turned to John to tell him about it. Very exciting. Lots of bird and lizard life to keep me busy out there and great company as well! I’m looking forward to next year.

In response to Buford’s comments, I think that some form of vetting for potential counters would be beneficial. I’ll probably talk with Mike about it and would encourage others to do the same if they agree. As it works now, if you fill out a form and attend orientation, you’re in, and you find out where you are counting when you attend orientation. This happens without anyone physically seeing you prior to assess if you look like someone who is going to handle off-trail, difficult terrain in hot temperatures. It might be controversial to judge folks by body type, but I think some common-sense assessments can be implemented so that counters end up at places where they stand a chance of enjoying themselves safely. It’s difficult though, with so many volunteers and a limited number of sites to choose from. But we can help improve the process I think.
edited by ziphius on 7/3/2018
7/3/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
dsefcik wrote:
Britain wrote:
Which one did you participate in?

Rattlesnake Spring

Last year if I'm correct you mentioned the spring was dry and nothing. Good to see the count going good.
7/2/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
I’ll put up some pics and report later. I counted at 3rd Grove. I led a team of three newbies. Everyone got out safe, but we ended up counting as a team of 2. My post from last year is still relevant:

The upper Palm Canyon count sites do not have a trail to them and require bouldering, talus hopping, loose steep slopes and bushwhacking to hike to. Add in a full pack and the high temperatures and it is even more difficult. I cannot stress this enough for someone that wants to count these sites. All three years I have done this there has been someone assigned to count in upper Palm Canyon who is not prepared for the hike in and out and really suffers. This year was no exception.
7/2/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Britain wrote:
Which one did you participate in?

Rattlesnake Spring
7/2/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
dsefcik wrote:
Final Count attached to this post.

Will post pictures and commentary in a few days.

Which one did you participate in?
7/2/2018
Topic:
2018 BHS Count Results

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: 2018 BHS Count Results
Final Count attached to this post.

Will post pictures and commentary in a few days.
7/2/2018
Topic:
No Big Horn this year seen during hiking

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Initial reports on the sheep counts are out. Couple folks here are in the count. Waiting for their report.
6/25/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Britain wrote:
Be careful out there
https://www.nbcsandiego.com/news/local/Search-On-for-Man-Missing-in-Desert-During-Heat-Warning-486333201.html??f
edited by Britain on 6/25/2018



Hmm. I wonder what happened.
6/25/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Be careful out there
https://www.nbcsandiego.com/news/local/Search-On-for-Man-Missing-in-Desert-During-Heat-Warning-486333201.html??f
edited by Britain on 6/25/2018
6/24/2018
Topic:
Not enough rangers

tekewin
tekewin
Posts: 99
tekewin
tekewin
Posts: 99
Topic: Not enough rangers
Wow. This is shocking. I'd rather have a full staff at all the parks than a half built high speed rail system, but that's just me.
6/22/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
rockhopper wrote:
Ha. That's a good one Buford. I follow the old timers and ancient peoples migrations. Low desert in the Winter, Mountians in the summer. Rocko1, Daren pretty much nailed it. Good luck. But I would go higher in elevation.



Thanks. I think I will turn this into a 2 day backpack trip with my dad in cooler weather.
6/22/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

rockhopper
rockhopper
Posts: 412
Ha. That's a good one Buford. I follow the old timers and ancient peoples migrations. Low desert in the Winter, Mountians in the summer. Rocko1, Daren pretty much nailed it. Good luck. But I would go higher in elevation.
6/21/2018
Topic:
Not enough rangers

Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Topic: Not enough rangers
I worry about the resources being abused and trashed. Even with the full ranger staff there was too much abuse of the area.
6/21/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Britain wrote:
dsefcik wrote:
Thanks ziphius for catching this post, I missed it somehow.

I do not know your experience or capabilities, especially in the desert...in the summer...however for most folks, venturing out 8+ miles for a backpack trip into the desert in the summer with 105+ temps and relying on a water source to provide is a risk for anyone of any skill or knowledge level. When we head out for trips where water sources may be suspect we always, always bring enough to get us in to the first source and back in case it is dry. That may demand carrying 8 liters the first day.


This. I've lived in Imperial Valley for a long time. Used to do hikes in the heat mostly for photo ops around active springs. Like scuba diving I never went alone. It also pays to look at the weather temps for those hikes. I used to also carry an umbrella on my pack. This weeks temps not hot but dangerously hot.


Looks like sheep count weather.
6/21/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
dsefcik wrote:
Thanks ziphius for catching this post, I missed it somehow.

I do not know your experience or capabilities, especially in the desert...in the summer...however for most folks, venturing out 8+ miles for a backpack trip into the desert in the summer with 105+ temps and relying on a water source to provide is a risk for anyone of any skill or knowledge level. When we head out for trips where water sources may be suspect we always, always bring enough to get us in to the first source and back in case it is dry. That may demand carrying 8 liters the first day.


This. I've lived in Imperial Valley for a long time. Used to do hikes in the heat mostly for photo ops around active springs. Like scuba diving I never went alone. It also pays to look at the weather temps for those hikes. I used to also carry an umbrella on my pack. This weeks temps not hot but dangerously hot.
6/17/2018
Topic:
Not enough rangers

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: Not enough rangers
Sad, parts of the park are being torn up.
6/17/2018
Topic:
Not enough rangers

tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 791
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 791
Topic: Not enough rangers
And California only has a $9 billion surplus this year. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
6/17/2018
Topic:
Not enough rangers

ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
Topic: Not enough rangers
Sad story and true. And people complain if you impose some small park fee to raise money to help pay for rangers etc.
edited by ziphius on 6/17/2018
6/17/2018
Topic:
Not enough rangers

Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Topic: Not enough rangers
upset

http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/communities/north-county/sd-no-park-staffing-20180531-story.html
6/13/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
dsefcik wrote:
Rocko1 wrote:
Looks like a great trip. How far up RHC Road do you think you could get in a 2wd Explorer?
You should be able to get to Butler Junction without a problem. RHC in 105+ temps does not sound like any fun at all.....



Thanks. I draw the line when it gets near 110. smile
6/13/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
Topic: 2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?
Rocko1 wrote:
Thank you for all of the information. This is an interesting option. I will do some mapping and see how that would look.

Thanks again.

There is an informal "trail" with a scattering of cairns from the top down to the cottonwoods, there is some brush bushwhack but no bad overall.
6/13/2018
Topic:
Canyon Sin Nombre

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Topic: Canyon Sin Nombre
Thanks. We had been moving up the hill and kept seeing fresh urine/droppings. My dad thought is was from a huge rabbit but I said it has to be sheep or something with a massive bladder. We must have seen 10+ fresh pools 10" or so in diameter. Little did we know we were following them by accident on a use trail. They blend in so perfectly with the landscape.

Here is another video.

https://youtu.be/UAQfs2oy_v0
edited by Rocko1 on 6/13/2018
edited by Rocko1 on 6/13/2018
6/13/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
dsefcik wrote:
The other possibility is to park up at Toro peak and make your way down to the cottonwoods. Assuming there is water (which I would be surprised if there was not) you could base camp there and do some day hikes into the surrounding RHC area. This is a fairly common route even during non summer months. The only drawback is you will have to climb 3,000' to get back to your car. Toro is at 8,000+ and the cottonwoods are at 5,000 so the temps should better than down on the desert floor.


Thank you for all of the information. This is an interesting option. I will do some mapping and see how that would look.

Thanks again.
6/13/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

dsefcik
dsefcik
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dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
Topic: 2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?
The other possibility is to park up at Toro peak and make your way down to the cottonwoods. Assuming there is water (which I would be surprised if there was not) you could base camp there and do some day hikes into the surrounding RHC area. This is a fairly common route even during non summer months. The only drawback is you will have to climb 3,000' to get back to your car. Toro is at 8,000+ and the cottonwoods are at 5,000 so the temps should better than down on the desert floor.
6/13/2018
Topic:
Canyon Sin Nombre

tekewin
tekewin
Posts: 99
tekewin
tekewin
Posts: 99
Topic: Canyon Sin Nombre
Excellent video! This area does look nice. Thanks for posting.
6/13/2018
Topic:
Canyon Sin Nombre

surfponto
surfponto
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Posts: 1231
surfponto
surfponto
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Posts: 1231
Topic: Canyon Sin Nombre
Love driving down there. Nice video
6/13/2018
Topic:
Canyon Sin Nombre

ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
Topic: Canyon Sin Nombre
Nice trip report. Those rams are pretty robust!
6/12/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Britain wrote:

If I recall correctly a few days earlier you tagged the false Pah BM. Temps the same. You have a drinking problem smile haha
uummm...you caught me....Cool Smoke
6/12/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
dsefcik wrote:
Britain wrote:
dsefcik wrote:
Rocko1 wrote:
Looks like a great trip. How far up RHC Road do you think you could get in a 2wd Explorer?
You should be able to get to Butler Junction without a problem. RHC in 105+ temps does not sound like any fun at all.....

So says the guy that tags PAH BM in 105 temps.......
Well, and then there was this...I need to go back to DV...that trip was actually fun...smile

Yes that was a good trip Had a friend come out of the area of the DH grave monument and went up to Telescope. 18hr hike, the backup car was at MF. Said it was his hardest hike ever. 108 temps blaa...
6/12/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
dsefcik wrote:
Britain wrote:
dsefcik wrote:
Rocko1 wrote:
Looks like a great trip. How far up RHC Road do you think you could get in a 2wd Explorer?
You should be able to get to Butler Junction without a problem. RHC in 105+ temps does not sound like any fun at all.....

So says the guy that tags PAH BM in 105 temps.......
Yeah, but I never said it was "fun"....those that know me might say I just needed to burn off a hangover that day...Toast

If I recall correctly a few days earlier you tagged the false Pah BM. Temps the same. You have a drinking problem smile haha
6/12/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Britain wrote:
dsefcik wrote:
Rocko1 wrote:
Looks like a great trip. How far up RHC Road do you think you could get in a 2wd Explorer?
You should be able to get to Butler Junction without a problem. RHC in 105+ temps does not sound like any fun at all.....

So says the guy that tags PAH BM in 105 temps.......
Well, and then there was this...I need to go back to DV...that trip was actually fun...smile
6/12/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Britain wrote:
dsefcik wrote:
Rocko1 wrote:
Looks like a great trip. How far up RHC Road do you think you could get in a 2wd Explorer?
You should be able to get to Butler Junction without a problem. RHC in 105+ temps does not sound like any fun at all.....

So says the guy that tags PAH BM in 105 temps.......
Yeah, but I never said it was "fun"....those that know me might say I just needed to burn off a hangover that day...Toast
6/12/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
dsefcik wrote:
Rocko1 wrote:
Looks like a great trip. How far up RHC Road do you think you could get in a 2wd Explorer?
You should be able to get to Butler Junction without a problem. RHC in 105+ temps does not sound like any fun at all.....

So says the guy that tags PAH BM in 105 temps.......
6/12/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Rocko1 wrote:
Looks like a great trip. How far up RHC Road do you think you could get in a 2wd Explorer?
You should be able to get to Butler Junction without a problem. RHC in 105+ temps does not sound like any fun at all.....
6/12/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
Administrator
Posts: 2189
Topic: 2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?
Thanks ziphius for catching this post, I missed it somehow.

Rocko1, I do not know your experience or capabilities, especially in the desert...in the summer...however for most folks, venturing out 8+ miles for a backpack trip into the desert in the summer with 105+ temps and relying on a water source to provide is a risk for anyone of any skill or knowledge level. When we head out for trips where water sources may be suspect we always, always bring enough to get us in to the first source and back in case it is dry. That may demand carrying 8 liters the first day.

That said...the upper reaches of Nicholias Cyn near the cottonwoods as described in Schad's book should have water, it was flowing just fine a few weeks ago. I have never been out there in June/July/August so use that information at your own risk.

RHC is especially lonely in the summer and cell phones do not work but HAM works great off Toro.

PM me for more info you like, let us know if you venture out!
6/12/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Buford wrote:
Another problem is reliability of water sources, especially in the summer. Sources that used to be reliable, may not be anymore due to drought, seasons, earthquakes, human intervention, or other causes. Not many people hike in Borrego in the summer either so info is more limited.

No one wants to send someone with unknown outdoors ability who they’ve never met in person to a potentially dry source the person might be relying on for survival.

Edit:
I actually don’t know the exact location of any year round water sources that are “secret.” I know some people here do. Another thing would be to search them out in winter with old Topo maps and google earth followed by some exploring on the ground.
edited by Buford on 6/12/2018



Makes perfect sense. I may stick with a 2 day trip until temperatures cool off. Thanks.
edited by Rocko1 on 6/12/2018
6/12/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

Buford
Buford
Posts: 106
Another problem is reliability of water sources, especially in the summer. Sources that used to be reliable, may not be anymore due to drought, seasons, earthquakes, human intervention, or other causes. Not many people hike in Borrego in the summer either so info is more limited.

No one wants to send someone with unknown outdoors ability who they’ve never met in person to a potentially dry source the person might be relying on for survival.

Edit:
I actually don’t know the exact location of any year round water sources that are “secret.” I know some people here do. Another thing would be to search them out in winter with old Topo maps and google earth followed by some exploring on the ground.
edited by Buford on 6/12/2018
6/12/2018
Topic:
Canyon Sin Nombre

dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
Topic: Canyon Sin Nombre
Nice healthy rams for sure...nice footage...Thumbs Up
6/12/2018
Topic:
Canyon Sin Nombre

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Topic: Canyon Sin Nombre
April of last year we stayed a couple of days at the south end of Canyon Sin Nombre. I had not been here since I was a kid. Explored the area with my brother and dad. Kept the hiking light for them. Saw a pair of healthy big horns in the morning hiking up the hill towards Sweeny Pass Rd. Nice area.

Big Horn Sheep
https://youtu.be/AqgcHugb0Vg



Healthy from the years heavy rains.



Looking south, near the end of the canyon.
edited by Rocko1 on 6/12/2018
6/12/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Looks like a great trip. How far up RHC Road do you think you could get in a 2wd Explorer?
6/12/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
ziphius wrote:
Rocko1 wrote:
Ok, I understand that. How does one get 'vetted' so to speak?


It kind of happens 'organically', at least on this forum. Folks post threads from their trips, show an interest and respect for the desert and it's cultural and biological treasures, get invited on a trip with forum members, maybe they are known from other sources, like the annual bighorn sheep count, then they are trusted. Internet has resulted in 'oversharing' with the result being that many sites are now overrun. Tassajara Hot Springs is a good example. We are friendly here, but we generally don't post specific locations of obscure water sources, pictographs, etc. Just thought someone should reply to this thread.



I get it. Thanks for the info. I understand how sensitive the information is and how important protecting the area is as well. I have gotten to a certain point reading the standard books of the area by Schad, Lindsay, and wanted to try something a bit off the norm. Carrying 2-3 days water is tough in the summer.

Thanks for replying.
6/12/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
Rocko1 wrote:
Ok, I understand that. How does one get 'vetted' so to speak?


It kind of happens 'organically', at least on this forum. Folks post threads from their trips, show an interest and respect for the desert and it's cultural and biological treasures, get invited on a trip with forum members, maybe they are known from other sources, like the annual bighorn sheep count, then they are trusted. Internet has resulted in 'oversharing' with the result being that many sites are now overrun. Tassajara Hot Springs is a good example. We are friendly here, but we generally don't post specific locations of obscure water sources, pictographs, etc. Just thought someone should reply to this thread.
6/12/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
ziphius wrote:
There may be some reluctance to post locations or identify otherwise obscure backcountry water sources on the open forum, especially given the history of some of those sources being diverted for illegal weed farms and the associated trash and other problems that come with discovery. Just didn't want you to think folks were ignoring your thread / post.



Ok, I understand that. How does one get 'vetted' so to speak?
6/12/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
There may be some reluctance to post locations or identify otherwise obscure backcountry water sources on the open forum, especially given the history of some of those sources being diverted for illegal weed farms and the associated trash and other problems that come with discovery. Just didn't want you to think folks were ignoring your thread / post.
6/4/2018
Topic:
2-3 Day Trip Recommendation?

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Looking to do a 2 day backpacking trip this summer. I was hoping I could make a reliable water source the halfway point so I wouldn't have to carry so much water. I know of a few of the sources-Palm Spring, Dos Cabezas but those don't fit will with a decent route. Can anyone point me towards a reliable source 8-12 miles from place I can park? It would be appreciated.
6/3/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

dsefcik
dsefcik
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dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
rockhopper wrote:
Nice back pack trip Daren and Gary. I need to get back out to Rockhouse valley again. It's been too long. Sorry to see the drug cartels setting up in "our" wilderness. I worry about the animal poison those guys use. Good to see wildlife at the water source and scat around. Good sign! I wish the feds would clean that up after they shut it down. Do they know the about that one? Nice red man picto. Looks very old. It's a special place. how high up in elevation did you go? Are the burial mounds still intact by the rock house ruins? Any "old " trails re-discovered.
cheers

Doesn't seem like the feds clean up much, usually just the irrigation lines get cut. There is an old indian trail out there we cleared the brush on for about 3 miles...spent most of the day doing that. Somebody also hauled out a pair of brush clippers we had stashed. Seems like somebody thought they were helping by removing the "trash" at the site.
6/3/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

dsefcik
dsefcik
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dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
ziphius wrote:
Expert consensus on your thumb-sized scat is roadrunner!
Thanks Jim....the FB group looks interesting also, didn't realize there were so many other people that liked animal poop as much as me...Big Grin
6/1/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Expert consensus on your thumb-sized scat is roadrunner!
6/1/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

rockhopper
rockhopper
Posts: 412
rockhopper
rockhopper
Posts: 412
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Nice back pack trip Daren and Gary. I need to get back out to Rockhouse valley again. It's been too long. Sorry to see the drug cartels setting up in "our" wilderness. I worry about the animal poison those guys use. Good to see wildlife at the water source and scat around. Good sign! I wish the feds would clean that up after they shut it down. Do they know the about that one? Nice red man picto. Looks very old. It's a special place. how high up in elevation did you go? Are the burial mounds still intact by the rock house ruins? Any "old " trails re-discovered.
cheers
5/31/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Daren, thanks I posted the photos to a couple of different groups. I recommend joining 'Animals Don't Cover Their Tracks', a FB group administered by Kim Cabrera. That is a very active forum at a national and international level, but there are a lot of California trackers on there. If you're interested in studying track & sign in person, there are about 6-8 of us that get together at various sites (Lake Morena, Border Field SP) every 2-3 weeks. I can fill you in on that offline if interested.
5/31/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

dsefcik
dsefcik
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dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
ziphius wrote:
Daren,About what size was the scat?
Sorry, it was about the size of my thumb....boink
5/31/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

dsefcik
dsefcik
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dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
ziphius wrote:
Daren,Ok if I post a copy of that scat photo to a track & sign geek group and see if they think it's roadrunner? - Jim
Yes, and tell me how I can join!!
5/31/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 710
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Daren,

Looks like an a great trip! I believe your scat might belong to a roadrunner. There is usually a white uric acid cap attached to those, but it might have broken away or eroded out before the remainder. About what size was the scat? Ok if I post a copy of that scat photo to a track & sign geek group and see if they think it's roadrunner? - Jim
edited by ziphius on 5/31/2018
5/31/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 791
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 791
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Looks like a great trip, Daren. That birthday note to Andrew or Olaf has me confused.
5/31/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

surfponto
surfponto
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Posts: 1231
surfponto
surfponto
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Posts: 1231
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Wow that growing camp is crazy !
For some reason I always equate these with national forests.

Love the red man picto.

Great post Daren,

Bob
5/31/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

dsefcik
dsefcik
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dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
tekewin wrote:

Is that a 22 or an air rifle? Can't tell from the photo.
Air rifle....
5/30/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Britain
Britain
Posts: 351
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Nice! Seems like a well-traveled area. Need to put on my list for next year if I can get some company to come. Don't want to end up mountain lion food. So as written in an earlier posting "Whats on the menu? " That was a great write up also. Thanks for the share!
edited by Britain on 5/30/2018
5/30/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

tekewin
tekewin
Posts: 99
tekewin
tekewin
Posts: 99
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Awesome trip as usual. Looks like a gopher snake in the water.

I know there are lions in the desert, but surprised they find enough food. There aren't that many bighorns and I thought deer were in higher forested areas. I've read there are hundreds of lions in the Palomar and Agua Tibia areas. OTOH, they can roam hundreds of miles.

Is that a 22 or an air rifle? Can't tell from the photo. I am shocked that there are grow farms in RHC. They are all over the San Gabriels but this is news to me. Thanks for posting!
5/30/2018
Topic:
No Big Horn this year seen during hiking

tekewin
tekewin
Posts: 99
Dang. I did two hikes in the area this year and nada. Come to think of it, the only place I've seen bighorns in AB was on a ridge on the way to San Ysidro East. Scat and prints are everywhere, but they are hard for me to spot.
5/30/2018
Topic:
RHC 4 Day Backpack

dsefcik
dsefcik
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dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
Topic: RHC 4 Day Backpack
Gary and I went out for another 4 day backpack trip into Rockhouse Canyon. We did the rounds on the springs to make sure they were in good order and only noted the spring at Cowboy had been messed up by someone who probably thought they were helping. The branches that we placed to keep the animals from breaking down the rock build up were all tossed aside and the aluminum tent stake we had stashed to help clean out the piping was gone. We fixed it all back up and got it flowing good again.

Lots of new cairns were put up, looked like whoever did it was losing the trail and putting ducks up wherever they went.

2 nights at the Cottonwoods with a full day exploring the western Santa Rosa mountains below Toro Peak. Lots of now defunct Mary Jane plantations. Plenty of interesting artifacts still around

Defunct camp base


Even Mary Jane cultivators have dental hygiene


This was interesting, they placed a single bottle with a drip line to feed a single grow


Pit used to capture water form a nearby spring and then draw the irrigation lines down the grow areas


Varmit protection or hiker scare tactic?


Plenty of grow supplies


We were excited to find a new water hole even with wildlife


Managed to pick up another radiosonde, looks like it had a crash landing


On our way back to the Cottonwoods we saw some fresh mountain lion tracks and then ran into this large scat. My phone is about 6.5" long, this scat was pretty big


Red Man looked in good shape and the cactus bloom was a pretty addition


View from upper rockhouse area looking down towards the lower rockhouses


Bees were busy with the blloms that were coming out


Super deep morteros


New scat to me, anybody know what critter this is from?


Close up of scat


Last night out with an almost full moon and view of Dawns Peak


Total Mylar balloons - 10 (not all pictured)


Note attached some balloon


--
5/29/2018
Topic:
Pinyon Mountain Road Current Condition?

Rocko1
Rocko1
Posts: 53
Does anyone know the current condition of Pinyon Mountain Rd up to the Whale Peak trail head?
5/29/2018
Topic:
Carrizo Gorge Work Camps

dsefcik
dsefcik
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dsefcik
dsefcik
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Posts: 2189
Topic: Carrizo Gorge Work Camps
One of my favorite areas also, lots to explore out in Carrizo. Thanks for sharing the photos.
5/27/2018
Topic:
Carrizo Gorge Work Camps

rockhopper
rockhopper
Posts: 412
Those old time rail workers really did the impossible. I still am amazed.




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