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Talk about a trip you took out to Anza Borrego

Squaw Tit, Table Mountain and 10 other Benchmarks Messages in this topic - RSS

mrkmc
mrkmc
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10/20/2012
mrkmc
mrkmc
Posts: 87
Did some hiking/ driving in the desert this weekend. First stop was in the Jacumba area to several benchmarks, Squaw Tit and Table Mountain. Fairly uneventful other than a run in with the boarder patrol. I was on my was to the Puto Benchmark, which happens to be a few hundred feet from where the border fence comes to an end. I was about 50' below the benchmark when an agent drove up. I pretended I didn't see him and just kept hiking up. I was nearly to the BM when he summoned me on the loud speaker to "please come down here so I can talk to you" I knew I had every right to be in the area, it is BLM. I was pretty sure he was just going to give me the speech about how dangerous the area is. I was only about 1 minute from reaching the BM so I yelled down to him that "I was just out hiking and I was going to continue onto the BM then come down". I turned my back and continued up. A few seconds later he came back on the loud speaker and asked me to come down. It didn't really sound like and order, so I kept heading up and found the BM. I made sure I stayed in view of him so he wouldn't think I was running away, took a pic of the BM, took a pic him by my truck then started down. Took me about 5 minutes to get back down, where he walked over and met me at the base of the hill. He asked what I was doing and I explained. Surprisingly he didn't scold me for continuing up after he told me to come down. As I suspected he was just checking to see what I was doing so close to the border, and especially right where the fence comes to and end. He told me how dangerous it was around there and I shouldn't be there. I told him I planned to hike to several more BM's in the area that day and appreciated that he was paying attention. So after hiking/ driving to Jade, Puto, Tahe, Gold and Nopal, I drove over to Mica Gem Road and crossed under the I-8. I hiked up to Squaw Tit and Table Mountain. This is a nice area and I like the red rocks and soils. After that I headed in to ABDSP and found a spot to camp, made dinner, took a few pictures and went to bed.

The next morning I got up at sunrise to start hiking to several Benchmarks in the Blair Valley area. First up was Rego Benchmark. This is a great little "peak" with good views of Blair Valley and Granite Mountain. The summit area and northeast slope looked to be recently burned. After Rego, I headed off for Seyer and Box BM's. The area just above Box Canyon next to the highway was also recently burned. I was quite surprised to find the survey tower at the Seyer BM still fully intact. I usually just find pieces of wire and wood all around but this one was still standing. I traversed over to Box BM, found the register then dropped down into Box Canyon. I found the skull of something. Maybe a Coyote, I am not sure. Also saw a bee hive in a hole in the canyon wall. Next up was Quake and Shake BM's over in Blair Valley. Nothing to exciting here, but the area was deserted. Didn't really see many people out at all this weekend, except for the 20+ cars belonging to hunters I saw parked along San Felipe Road.

All of the pictures can be seen on my picasa page.


The Indians in Mexico made much more advanced pottery than those in CA




Note the Boarder Patrol behind my truck


Man Yoni? smile


Seyer BM survey tower


skull. coyote? The jaw and top were not connected, I may not have put it together right?


Bees!
<em>edited by mrkmc on 10/20/2012</em>
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tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 994


10/21/2012
tommy750
tommy750
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Benchmark Puto (not to mention the nearby Squaw Tit) continues the long glorious tradition of obscene and offensive place names in official maps. There's even a book on the subject called "From Squaw Tit to Whorehouse Meadow: How Maps Name, Claim, and Inflame." A slew of articles on map expletives emerged after Rick Perry's leased "Niggerhead" hunting camp hit the news cycle last Republican Primary. Was surprised to find this BM a few years back and quickly sent off a screen grab to a few Hispanic friends who were somewhat amused at seeing this homosexual slur in an official USGS document. Nice pics. Tom
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ziphius
ziphius
Posts: 899


10/22/2012
ziphius
ziphius
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Nice TR and photos! It looks like 1941 was a popular year to install benchmarks. Is there any rhyme or reason to which ones are missing the elevation stamps?

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mrkmc
mrkmc
Posts: 87


10/22/2012
mrkmc
mrkmc
Posts: 87
tommy750 wrote:
the long glorious tradition of obscene and offensive place names in official maps.


I like looking at the old topo maps on caltopo for obscene and offensive place names. There are several in southern California that are no longer used.

ziphius wrote:
It looks like 1941 was a popular year to install benchmarks. Is there any rhyme or reason to which ones are missing the elevation stamps?


Yes, lots of the BM's in the area are from the early 40's. Seems like most don't have the elevation stamped on, but its almost always shown as a spot elevation on the topo. Several of the ones in my pictures are the locator markers (the ones with arrows) There was one on Gold, but I forgot to take a picture of it. Didn't find one on Tahe or Nopal. The summit area of Tahe looked to have been bulldozed or graded, maybe associated with the Eliot mine.
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surfponto
surfponto
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10/23/2012
surfponto
surfponto
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That shot of the border fence is pretty cool.

Good Posting

Were the Border Patrol waiting for you to return to your truck?

Bob

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dsefcik
dsefcik
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10/23/2012
dsefcik
dsefcik
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I love the bee hive photo, I have only found dead, dry combs.

Did you find all 3 benchmarks at Quake? I only found 2.

The Shake register has minimal entries, I think I went there 2 times....nice spot.

Great TR..!!

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AdventureGraham
AdventureGraham
Posts: 170


10/24/2012
AdventureGraham
AdventureGraham
Posts: 170
Thanks for trip report and photos! Looks like a good time out there. Its been ages since I've been up to Squaw Tit; I need to get out there a take some pictures. Did you happen to see any quail out there? Seems like I've seen fewer and fewer coveys out there over the years.

I would have done the same as you when the Border Patrol agent called you. Sometimes those guys get on my nerves out there. That's public land out there that we have right to be on. There's no reason for them to interfere in our lawful business while we're just out enjoying the outdoors. When asked what I'm doing out there I just say, minding my own business.
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mrkmc
mrkmc
Posts: 87


10/24/2012
mrkmc
mrkmc
Posts: 87
BorregoWrangler wrote:
Did you happen to see any quail out there?..........

I would have done the same as you when the Border Patrol agent called,...........


Didn't notice any quail. I don't mind the BP stopping to check me out. I was right by the end of the fence, with a truck and a backpack...Its good to know they are paying attention. What bothers me is when they give the Impresion or try and intimidate people into thinking they are doing something wrong. I have had several encounters with them and they all try and make you leave the area, without directly coming out and saying it. They always make it sound like a war zone. I think the more legal people they deter from the area the easier their job is.
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anutami
anutami
Posts: 491


10/24/2012
anutami
anutami
Posts: 491
Yeah it is pretty lame how they make you feel like you are doing something wrong. I got questioned pretty hard on the checkpoint on S-2 right before the mortero wash turnout, the guy even freaked the kids out a little bit by his tone and multiple questions.
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surfponto
surfponto
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10/24/2012
surfponto
surfponto
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Have had the same thing at the S2 checkpoint and I agree it is a drag upset

I talk about it in this post.

anutami wrote:
Yeah it is pretty lame how they make you feel like you are doing something wrong. I got questioned pretty hard on the checkpoint on S-2 right before the mortero wash turnout, the guy even freaked the kids out a little bit by his tone and multiple questions.


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AdventureGraham
AdventureGraham
Posts: 170


10/24/2012
AdventureGraham
AdventureGraham
Posts: 170
surfponto wrote:
Have had the same thing at the S2 checkpoint and I agree it is a drag upset

I talk about it in this post.

anutami wrote:
Yeah it is pretty lame how they make you feel like you are doing something wrong. I got questioned pretty hard on the checkpoint on S-2 right before the mortero wash turnout, the guy even freaked the kids out a little bit by his tone and multiple questions.


It was at that checkpoint where I was really harassed by BP agents one time. I was out in my old Jeep just enjoying a day in the desert, heading out to Carrizo Creek. They asked all the usual questions... Where are you going? Where are you coming from? What is your citizenship? I was in a good mood and answered all their questions but they still demanded to know what I was REALLY doing out there. What was I hiding? Where are the drugs? No one comes out here. There is nothing out here for anyone. After I ended up getting PO'd and yelling at them I was allowed to go on my way. It put a damper on the whole day. Now I don't give them the time of day at those checkpoints and video record all interactions.

Of course now I usually just take Dos Cabezas Road and bypass the checkpoint there.
<em>edited by BorregoWrangler on 10/24/2012</em>
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dsefcik
dsefcik
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10/24/2012
dsefcik
dsefcik
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Can't say I have had any interactions like you all describe. I always ask them a bunch of questions and they seem eager to answer. Out in the field I am approached regularly and I usually end up having a conversation with them, I ask about the area, ask them if hey know about any wildlife, rock art, etc and they seem fine. At the check points they just ask the questions and I answer...no big deal.

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tommy750
tommy750
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10/24/2012
tommy750
tommy750
Posts: 994
Never had any real problems at the S-2 checkpoint but they do ask a lot of the standard questions. Always figured it's where they send the newbies to learn the ropes. On my first trip a few years back to the Coyote Mts Wind Caves, I missed the turn off and did an apparently very provocative U turn in front of the checkpoint. Was stopped with lights flashing and both agents' hands on their holsters. Didn't help I was driving a white cargo van at the time!
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surfponto
surfponto
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10/25/2012
surfponto
surfponto
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Posts: 1278
Classic..
Sure they loved that smile

tommy750 wrote:
Never had any real problems at the S-2 checkpoint but they do ask a lot of the standard questions. Always figured it's where they send the newbies to learn the ropes. On my first trip a few years back to the Coyote Mts Wind Caves, I missed the turn off and did an apparently very provocative U turn in front of the checkpoint. Was stopped with lights flashing and both agents' hands on their holsters. Didn't help I was driving a white cargo van at the time!


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rockhopper
rockhopper
Posts: 641


10/25/2012
rockhopper
rockhopper
Posts: 641
Doing the U-turn before the S2 check point. LOL! ........I never really had any problems so far. Last time thru I was amazed at the number of
BP agents. Looked like alot of rookies being trained. There must have been 15-20 personal out there on the road at the county line.
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TR
TR
Posts: 67


10/25/2012
TR
TR
Posts: 67
I've never had any trouble with them. But I'm always going to the Mortero Wash. So that seems to satisfy them. They one question that always throws me is, Nationality? It's so strange a question to be asking.
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Buford
Buford
Posts: 417


10/25/2012
Buford
Buford
Posts: 417
Thanks for the pictures. That is very similar to a trip I plan on doing this winter.

I camped at Blair Valley a few weeks ago, but just relaxed at camp instead of exploring too much.

I have never had problems with the border patrol checkpoints, although they did have the drug dog sniff all over my truck once.
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dsefcik
dsefcik
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10/25/2012
dsefcik
dsefcik
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Buford wrote:
although they did have the drug dog sniff all over my truck once.

They sniff my truck EVERY time....

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