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Big Bear to Ballarat

Discussion in 'Pacific Region' started by ntsqd, Sep 29, 2006.

  1. ntsqd

    ntsqd 1/2 ton status

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    Copied over from the Mojave Road thread:
    There is no one particular trail. I have a loose sequence of dirt roads & trails that can be strung together as far as the southern edge of Searles Lake. Then it runs into trouble. China Lake comes right down to the edge of the lakebed. To pass the lake on the east side means crossing onto the Mil Res. Not sure if that is doable or not. The southern most border of CL has a barbed wire fence backed up by two parallel 4' wide x 2.5' deep grooves cut in the ground. Yea, we could probably get across it, but it's pretty obvious we're not supposed to be there. If the Searles Lake boundary has such a feature then the route either has to venture out onto the lake bed (which is under the control of the two big mining companies in Trona) or it has to go on pavement around the lake thru Trona.

    The alternate route I've been contemplating is to turn east in Johnson Valley and head towards Baker. Then go up to West Side Rd. in DVNP and come across thru Goler Wash. There is a possible other route east of Afton, but I need to check to see if it first, goes thru, and second doesn't cross onto land(s) that are off limits.

    If you don't have them, the BLM maps for the Mojave are well worth the investment. I'm close to having all of them. I've been buying mine from Jawbone Station, but you can buy them over the phone and possibly online thru the Ridgecrest BLM office.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2006
  2. roadnotca

    roadnotca 3/4 ton status

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    ntsqd, have you looked at "Googlemaps"? Whats cool is you can switch back and forth between map and satellite, or display both.
    There is some really interesting desert and mtn. terrain sneaking in between Fort Irwin N. and Death Valley S. if a route was taken from Twenty Nine Palms around the East side of Irwin. Or starting from Baker like you said. Why/whats in Ballarat?
     
  3. 454k30

    454k30 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    Unfortuantley you will have to forget about getting any access to the Military base in China Lake. I am stationed here in the pit named ridgecrest and that installation is locked down tight. Don't trust any maps showing either part of the military res. A lot of those roads dont exsist anymore and some of them mark line ups for bombing training!!
     
  4. 454k30

    454k30 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    One more thing. Ballarat has a ghost town which is kinda cool, and then not to far from there is the Goler wash trail which heads up through the mountains and dumps into death valley. Goler also goes right past Barker ranch which is where Manson was arrested. Kinda macab but it draws a lot of tourists.
     
  5. ntsqd

    ntsqd 1/2 ton status

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    Haven't looked at Goolgemap with this in mind, that's a great idea.
    There's nothing in Ballarat, it is just an arbitary stopping point I chose a long time ago. About '98 two friends & I used a DeLorme to dead reckon our way across the desert from the Calicos to Last Chance. We all had a blast, but it only took a day. A long day, but just a day. Since then I've been wanting to do something longer & further and this was the first pair of points that I came up with.

    Assuming it's even possible, we wouldn't be crossing thru a major section of China Lake, we'd be skirting the NWxW-most boundary of the SE portion of the reservation. Would possibly cross onto Mil prop for no more than 2 miles if the map is any indication. What I have come across in the past, with regard in particular to CL, is that the road is simply diverted to follow the fence line. That, however, appears to put the route on Mining Co. controlled property. I've simply not been there, so I've no idea what the situation is.

    I've been thru Goler ~1/2 dozen times and actually spent the night last Spring at Barker Ranch.
    Ran into a guy at Barker that trip who claimed that his neighbor was one of the LAPD detectives on the scene during the arrest. Said they were not told of the conditions and had to hike in in penny loafers and suits!
     

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