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X-Mas Vacation - Southeast CA

Discussion in '3rd Gen. Tacomas (2016+)' started by Teegs, Dec 11, 2018.

  1. Dec 11, 2018 at 8:08 AM
    #1
    Teegs

    Teegs [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Every year we take the week from X-mas to New Years off and go on a road trip. I'm looking for some ideas in Southeastern CA (because we hate being cold, and its about the only direction to go in thats warmer).

    We've done J-Tree and Death Valley twice already. Death Valley is our fall back plan (and a damn good one at that) but we'd like to try something new.

    We're interested in good private dispersed, or out of the way camping. Moderate 4x4 trails, and prolly some hiking and good scenery.

    Any of you SoCal overlanders have any recommendations?
     
  2. Dec 11, 2018 at 8:13 AM
    #2
    shawn3210

    shawn3210 Well-Known Member

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    stock
    I hear really good things about Anza borrego
     
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  3. Dec 11, 2018 at 8:18 AM
    #3
    OnHartung'sRoad

    OnHartung'sRoad -So glad I didn't take the other...

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    Somewhere in the Mojave Desert...
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    2017 Tacoma OR 4x4 (formerly 2002 OR 4x4, 1995 4x4 4Runner, 1985 4x4 Toy PU) ... and RIP’s (rust in pieces) to a Bronco II 4x4 & S10 Blazer 4x4
    This thread will help:
    https://www.tacomaworld.com/threads/camping-sites.527242/
     
  4. Dec 11, 2018 at 8:22 AM
    #4
    rogue.tacoma

    rogue.tacoma Well-Known Member

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    Mojave Road
     
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  5. Dec 11, 2018 at 8:25 AM
    #5
    elmontemike

    elmontemike Well-Known Member

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    Second on Mojave Road.
     
  6. Dec 11, 2018 at 8:26 AM
    #6
    OnHartung'sRoad

    OnHartung'sRoad -So glad I didn't take the other...

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    Somewhere in the Mojave Desert...
    Vehicle:
    2017 Tacoma OR 4x4 (formerly 2002 OR 4x4, 1995 4x4 4Runner, 1985 4x4 Toy PU) ... and RIP’s (rust in pieces) to a Bronco II 4x4 & S10 Blazer 4x4
    Mojave Road is great, OP - be sure to check the weather and road conditions though, one can get bogged down in the dry lake (Soda Dry Lake) if it rained there much, and it has been known to dump snow a lot in the Mojave during the winter, seems to at least whenever I’m there.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2018
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  7. Dec 11, 2018 at 10:35 AM
    #7
    elmontemike

    elmontemike Well-Known Member

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    Yep. Soda Dry Lake. Lots of fun.
    :D
     
  8. Dec 11, 2018 at 10:53 AM
    #8
    OnHartung'sRoad

    OnHartung'sRoad -So glad I didn't take the other...

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    Somewhere in the Mojave Desert...
    Vehicle:
    2017 Tacoma OR 4x4 (formerly 2002 OR 4x4, 1995 4x4 4Runner, 1985 4x4 Toy PU) ... and RIP’s (rust in pieces) to a Bronco II 4x4 & S10 Blazer 4x4
    I now noticed that you want private, dispersed and remote- Mojave Road will have quite a few travelers on it during the winter break. From the post link I mentioned earlier, I recommend the Cima area, Kelso dunes and the lava tubes area, Caruthers Canyon, Old Woman Mountain and Skeleton Pass road, Cadiz Valley and Hole In the Wall in the Mojave

    Anza Borrego is nice, busy though. We camp in many places like Blair Valley in Anza Borrego for weekdays, but there are many private canyons you can find near park roads to camp. Dont pitch a tent or park under cliff overhangs there, though. I’ve seen a ranger’s jeep roof caved in that way!

    For trips closer to So Cal., have you tried Berdoo Cyn road south of Joshua tree NP, Pinto Basin and Old Dale Road north of the park? You will have to camp to the north or south out of the park on BLM though. Also try Pipes Canyon and other system roads in San Bernardino NF (dispersed camping allowed, but daytrips only if you dont want cold). And as you may know, there are always great places in Death Valley for privacy anytime of year! Panamint Valley and many,many other places east and west of HWY 395 out there too.

    Have a great time out there! I am going to be driving to Austin from So Cal for XMass, but I get a couple days on the way there to explore by myself with my dog. Thinking of driving straight through out of Ca and Az to spend the time in New Mexico - my first to see White Sands and Guadalupe Mountains, then Im spending 4 days on the way back to explore the rest with my wife and kid as well. Have a great time in my favorite places!
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2018
    elmontemike likes this.
  9. Dec 11, 2018 at 10:57 AM
    #9
    eon_blue

    eon_blue Unknown Member

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    The desert gets awfully cold in winter, too....especially at night. First time I did Mojave Road it was 13 degrees the first night we camped in mid-December.

    Daytime temps are usually "warm" though, 60s or 70s depending which part of the desert you're in.
     
    OnHartung'sRoad likes this.
  10. Dec 11, 2018 at 11:13 AM
    #10
    OnHartung'sRoad

    OnHartung'sRoad -So glad I didn't take the other...

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    Somewhere in the Mojave Desert...
    Vehicle:
    2017 Tacoma OR 4x4 (formerly 2002 OR 4x4, 1995 4x4 4Runner, 1985 4x4 Toy PU) ... and RIP’s (rust in pieces) to a Bronco II 4x4 & S10 Blazer 4x4
    Yup! That’s why I got one if these and a dual battery setup this XMass for winter trips with our RTT. Will be trying it out for the first time in NM this winter break:

    https://www.amazon.com/diesel-Heate...ater+truck&dpPl=1&dpID=51W7Y5Ct0gL&ref=plSrch

    Edit: get a 2KW unit like the one below for heating RTT’s and smaller units, sounds like someone bought the one (5KW) for Antarctica overlanding and for heating hot air balloons! :anonymous:

    https://www.amazon.com/Estink-Parki...oil+heater&dpPl=1&dpID=41AkpVh5HTL&ref=plSrch
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2018
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  11. Dec 11, 2018 at 11:19 AM
    #11
    eon_blue

    eon_blue Unknown Member

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    I wish I had my RTT back on that trip...this was not long after I got my truck though. All I had was a tiny 1 man backpacking tent, but a warm sleeping bag fortunately. I remember getting up to piss at 3am after drinking a bunch of cheap whisky around the campfire...head was pounding, about to pee myself, hardly dressed...stumbled out of the tent and thought for sure within 20 seconds that I was going to die right then and there, lol. To make matters worse, all of our water was frozen solid so I couldn't hydrate myself. Learned a few valuable camping lessons that night.

    For one, always sleep with a water bottle in your sleeping bag when it's freezing outside, so it doesn't turn into ice on you. And don't buy cheap plastic bottle whisky, ever.
     
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  12. Dec 11, 2018 at 11:24 AM
    #12
    OnHartung'sRoad

    OnHartung'sRoad -So glad I didn't take the other...

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    Somewhere in the Mojave Desert...
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    2017 Tacoma OR 4x4 (formerly 2002 OR 4x4, 1995 4x4 4Runner, 1985 4x4 Toy PU) ... and RIP’s (rust in pieces) to a Bronco II 4x4 & S10 Blazer 4x4
    :rofl:Well, at least the booze didn’t freeze! Had to start my car with a coleman stove in SW Utah one winter, that was fun. Put hot water bottles in the bag at bedtime, make for cool drinking water in the morning and easier to get to boil for coffee too! :rolleyes:
     
    eon_blue likes this.
  13. Dec 11, 2018 at 11:27 AM
    #13
    kgarrett11

    kgarrett11 Master Yoda

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    Anyone have more details on Mojave road? Id like to do that
     
  14. Dec 11, 2018 at 11:33 AM
    #14
    eon_blue

    eon_blue Unknown Member

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    ~140 miles of dirt going from Laughlin, NV to Barstow, CA. Some people run it the west to east but I think east to west is the best way, if you live in CA anyway.

    Tons of landmarks and sights to see along the way, countless abandoned mines and homes/ranches...some of which look like they're frozen in time from the early to mid 20th century when they were abandoned. Furniture, fixtures, appliances, even decorations still there in many of the homes but they haven't been lived in for decades. Few old military forts along the way. Caves to explore, dry lake bed to cross, sand dunes...it's a fun trip. Best to take at least a few days to do it, if not more, otherwise you're rushing through the sites to check out.

    It's 2wd friendly for the most part, both times I've done it we had 2wd trucks in the group. But I would make sure to go with at least one 4x4 just in case, if the weather gets bad then it could easily turn into a difficult trail in some parts. Plus it's pretty remote most of the way, so there's little to no cell reception which should be planned accordingly for.
     
  15. Dec 11, 2018 at 12:41 PM
    #15
    kgarrett11

    kgarrett11 Master Yoda

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    :bowdown: You the man! Thanks!
     
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  16. Dec 11, 2018 at 1:04 PM
    #16
    kalieaire

    kalieaire i didn't know they stacked sh*t that high.

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    keep in mind, you got a 5kw unit, you'll be burning .5L/hr on full blast. If you turn it to low, it probably won't burn completely because it needs to run the glow plug, and even then, it'll still create a lot of carbon buildup. the glow plug is around 50-70w/hr which can drain a battery pretty quick if it's running all the time. hopefully you also have an annex to heat up and the temps will be below 30 so it doesn't get too hot and so you don't have to go through a lot of startup cycles.

    a 2KW unit w/ recirc is usually the better choice for our camping setups.
     
  17. Dec 11, 2018 at 2:42 PM
    #17
    OnHartung'sRoad

    OnHartung'sRoad -So glad I didn't take the other...

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    Somewhere in the Mojave Desert...
    Vehicle:
    2017 Tacoma OR 4x4 (formerly 2002 OR 4x4, 1995 4x4 4Runner, 1985 4x4 Toy PU) ... and RIP’s (rust in pieces) to a Bronco II 4x4 & S10 Blazer 4x4
    Thanks! I will update that on the Amazon link. Im mainly interested in fast heatups getting in and out of bed- probably wont go with overnight heat. I did anticipate the electric draw and have a dual battery setup now. Fuel shouldn’t be a problem, I am using a 2gal fuel can for the diesel so it should last a few days.

    Wish I saw your post before buying it, oh well. If it doesn’t work out, I’ll either sell it as I’ve made it portable by installing it in a metal tool box - which would be perfect for heating a trailer or very large tent, or I’ll buy a diesel OR Tundra and will just run it off the main tank! :thumbsup:
     
  18. Dec 11, 2018 at 2:50 PM
    #18
    OnHartung'sRoad

    OnHartung'sRoad -So glad I didn't take the other...

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    Somewhere in the Mojave Desert...
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    2017 Tacoma OR 4x4 (formerly 2002 OR 4x4, 1995 4x4 4Runner, 1985 4x4 Toy PU) ... and RIP’s (rust in pieces) to a Bronco II 4x4 & S10 Blazer 4x4
    kgarrett11 likes this.
  19. Dec 11, 2018 at 8:31 PM
    #19
    kalieaire

    kalieaire i didn't know they stacked sh*t that high.

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    Yeah, the nice thing about the 5KW is that it'll work exactly for your purpose, but keep in mind, if you're in temps colder than 30F, you definitely need to recirculate, or you're just heating up cold air. I would use it exactly the same way on longer trips to conserve fuel.
     
    OnHartung'sRoad likes this.
  20. Dec 11, 2018 at 8:33 PM
    #20
    stun gun

    stun gun Well-Known Member

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    Some off road and excellent bouldering at valley of the moon, east of San Diego.
     

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