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Sunday, June 8, 2014

Tecuya Ridge Camp, LPNF - "managing a controlled crash landing"

 After concluding a two hour meeting at the Flying J Denny's in Frazier Park I decided to drive to Tecuya Mountain to camp for the night. Thirty years ago I drove these roads quite a bit. The roads were good fun in winter with snow on the trails, one situation required two vehicles with winches to rescue a truck.  Now the NFS locks the gate in November.
 It was June and the gate was open.
 The road climbs up to a high shelf road that runs east/west along Tecuya Ridge.
 Looking down on Cuddy Valley with Frazier Mountain in the distance.
 At the end of this 4x4 road is a small campsite but on this trip I am not interested in off-roading just camping for the night. Twenty-two years ago I helped a family drive back up the steep section on this road after they had descended not knowing that they would have to return the same way because the gate, on lower Pleito Creek, was locked about a mile from Neason's Flat. It was after that trip that I began writing my first guide book.
No longer in print.
 The road climbed higher above Cuddy Valley.
 After a while I reached the end of the road. Well, the end of the road in 2014. There are the remains of an old jeep road that continued on and zigzagged up Antimony Peak. The road was originally constructed in the 1940's by the U.S. Bureau of Mines and rebuilt by Tenneco Mining in the 1970's. - Hugh Blanchard and Tom Hill.

 I unpacked and launched my drone to take some aerial photographs of the camp and Antimony Peak. This photo was taken seconds before one of the motors on the quadcopter began to malfunction sending it zooming to the right. I barely avoided smashing high in a tree before managing a controlled crash landing.
 Sunset at my Tecuya Ridge camp.
A rabbit wandered through camp at 10:42. I am always hoping for something bigger. Several years ago, before this game camera, I found bear tracks beside our truck in the morning.
 4:37 A.M. - 25 second exposure.
 Antimony Peak to the north. Hiked up to that peak's summit back in 2001.
A Blue Bottomed Lizard watched me eat my breakfast.
 Soon it was time to break camp.
 A few clusters of lupine were growing along the road.
It started to get warm on Tecuya Ridge.
 After about twenty minutes I reached pavement and turned left for home.


  1. Looks like a nice trip. Brian and I are exploring the mountains more now that it's summer, but are already planning desert trips for the cooler months, buying lots of Mojave Desert books.

  2. Nice report and photos. I may have to get one of those game cameras to see who visits me during the night - sounds like fun.

    One small suggestion: for those of us not familiar with your usual haunts and habits, it would be useful if you would briefly identify where you are, e.g., I don't know any of those names on the road sign or the town your reference in your first paragraph. Simply spelling out what LPNF stands for would be a good step. Thanks and keep up the fun reports.