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Unread 09-02-2012, 08:56 PM   #1
Registered User
2006 LJ Wrangler 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 21
Lj Big Bend Trip Report

Spent the Labor Day weekend in Big Bend. Took the River Road West from the west end above Castalon east to the Black Gap Road, which I took north to Glenn Springs, then up the Glenn Springs Road back to the paved road. The River Road was OK, with a lot of washes and creek beds to traverse. A couple of times, it was hard to figure out what was the road and what was the creek bed. I had a road shown on my topo GPS and when in doubt, I tried to stick with where the GPS showed the road. The only tricky part was at mile 10.3 east of the paved road, where there was a huge mud hole (yes, I know this is a desert, but it was close to the river). A late model Tundra had been riding along with us up to this point, but they decided not to risk it. I put it into low and pushed through. The ruts were deep, but the brush was too thick on either side to try to take a line other than right down the ruts. We did not have any problems, but we were in a lifted Rubicon Unlimited with 33X12.5 MTRs. When we got through, there was heavy mud on the front up to the winch and muddy reeds hanging from the axles, sway bars and steering linkages. I think we scraped the center of the road off as we went through. After that, there were a few steep drops and rises as we went into and out of the washes and a lot of rocks, but nothing to write home about. This is not a road for a vehicle that does not have high take off and departure angles.

The Black Gap Road was rough as advertized. I was worried about getting a desert pinstripe job on my Jeep, but there was enough clearance to get through all but a few places. As we approached the drop off that you can see in a lot of YouTube videos, there were large boulders on the road, so we had to run with the right wheels up the side of the bluff to get through, but made it fine. I found a good line on the left side of the drop-off for the left wheels and arranged the rocks to make a good ramp for the right axle. We crawled down it with no problems at all. After that, there were plenty of rough areas, but nothing that was a problem for our Jeep. All in all, it was a blast and I am glad we did it. Some people say that they would not want to do this road from north to south, but I don't see it as a problem if you can get over the one ledge, which I did not think was that big of a deal. Again, you can look at people taking it on YouTube. Oh, and by the way, the scenery along the way was phenomenal. Even though my rear-view thermometer said it was 133, I don't think it was a bit over 110. If you own a Jeep and live in Texas, this trip is a must.

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Unread 09-30-2012, 07:47 PM   #2
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2004 LJ Wrangler 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Texas Gulf Coast
Posts: 1,953
Try the State park next time....
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Unread 09-30-2012, 08:40 PM   #3
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2006 LJ Wrangler 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 21
Originally Posted by PhulesAu
Try the State park next time....
We did the state park last trip in my wife's 4Runner. Next trip, I plan to go back there with the Jeep and try some different trails. It is a great place if you like solitude.
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Unread 10-24-2012, 07:56 AM   #4
Mall Crawler
2005 LJ Wrangler 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Leander, TX
Posts: 430
We have a family ranch down in that area, off of 118 probably 15 miles north of Study Butte. Down Aqua fria road there are miles and miles of trails to mines and such back there. We've ridden our ATV's 150+ miles/day out there, it's a blast. I have pics in my flickr link below, click on Lajita's to see the scenery and terrain.
2005 LJ Rubicon - slightly modified

Build thread
Flickr pictures
Crawler Hauler build FOR SALE
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Unread 10-27-2012, 07:09 AM   #5
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2006 TJ Wrangler 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Texas, Texas
Posts: 220
That is a great area and as WMWHV noted it can get a little hot in the area. This past year, the Big Bend got a lot of rain which will change the landscape a lot.

With season coming on and cooler temperatures this is a great winter trip. Day temperatures can often be in the 70s, so it is not as hot as what WMWHV experienced. Typical winters days many times are like summer. (But the nights are still very cold)

The night life in and around Terlingua can be fun too.

It is time to start planning for trips there.

Attached is a video of photo that I put together last March (2012). Enjoy.


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