Otay Mountain, San Diego County

Discussion in 'GPS Tracks - West & PNW' started by sandiegoland, Dec 18, 2005.

  1. sandiegoland

    sandiegoland Adventure Boy®

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    Otay Mountain Truck Trail and Minnewawa Truck Trail. The main road is in pretty fair shape, but there are always the more primative spur roads* for the adventurous...

    Commanding views of the area. This is looking south to Cerro Jesus Maria in Mexico
    [​IMG]


    Obligatory backcountry trash photo. Actually the area is relatively clear of large debris for the most part...
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    Some of the side spur roads are a bit primative...
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    Some of the spur roads have eronious signage to confuse the uninformed about what is private and what are BLM managed areas. This particular gate marks the boundary of the Marron Valley Preserve.
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    There are a few roads that reach the border southwest of the main peak...
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    Lot's of corner mirrors for a road that gets almost no traffic...
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    It doesn't hurt to have a GPS if you aren't familiar with this area. That way, when you get to a fork in the road, you can take it...
    [​IMG]


    edit: Added these tracks to GPXchange for easy viewing with topographic maps... updated the attached GPX file to account for a locked gate on the West approach to Otay Mountain TT.

    edit: * Some useful BLM overlayed topographic maps can be found at http://www.blm.gov/ca/palmsprings/scrmp.html so you can be aware of what roads are excluded from the widlerness area.
    #1
  2. Trey650

    Trey650 Are We There Yet?

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    That's a fun area to ride. The mirrors are for when the Border Patrol comes flying around the corners. If it wasn't for those mirrors I would have become a hood ornament a couple of times. You also have to watch out that you don't accidently "cross" the border, the BP gets kinda testy at you if you do.
    #2
  3. sandiegoland

    sandiegoland Adventure Boy®

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    But officer... see the GPS says we're in America. Whoops, oh I see... Central America... sorry!
    :mulie
    #3
  4. sandiegoland

    sandiegoland Adventure Boy®

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    Some more from the same area. 4/23/06

    Foot traffic near the border from the night before recorded on the wet dirt road:
    [​IMG]


    The road winding down to the border monument provides a clear view of the border:
    [​IMG]

    A close-up:
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    The view to Downtown San Diego and Point Loma under the threat of weather:
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    A similar view down into Mexico:
    [​IMG]
    #4
  5. bikeslut

    bikeslut Long timer

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    sandiegoland- let me know if you ever want company down along the border- I want to check out the area, but not necesssarily alone the first time- drz or v strom- I'm in Alpine
    #5
  6. sandiegoland

    sandiegoland Adventure Boy®

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    A few shots taken 5/14/06 -

    [​IMG]
    Sandiegoland and Dils pause to let some local wildlife cross the road (Rubber Boa)

    [​IMG]
    View of Cottonwood Creek before it joins Tecate Creek to become the Tijuana River.
    #6
  7. elofdahl

    elofdahl n00b

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    Thanks for the tracks! I spent a good part of today riding south and west from Dulzura. Eventually I ended up near Otay Mesa at the border fence. I met a nice guy...he worked for the border patrol. His territory did not include the area around Otay Mountain, so he could not understand where I came from. Eventually I convinced him that I turned off Rt 94 at Dulzura and took the easy gravel/dirt roads through the mountains and down to the valley where he worked.
    #7
  8. sandiegoland

    sandiegoland Adventure Boy®

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    Glad you enjoyed the area! I'm always surprised how isolated that area is, being that it is so close to San Diego.
    #8
  9. mattybag

    mattybag Parrothead/Singlespeeder

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    Craig:
    From your pictures it looks like you got yourself a DRZ! and it looks like you're putting it to good use. Congrats.

    We'll have to get together for a ride soon. This time maybe I'll put one together up here going to Big Bear and the surrounding areas. Sickboy and I did a ride up there this weekend (he finally got his KTM running and was finally able to put some time on his new tires). :lol3

    Congrats again.
    Matt
    #9
  10. sandiegoland

    sandiegoland Adventure Boy®

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    Sure did. Nice little '02 with 4000 miles and all the typical mods already. Added the handguards and the folding mirrors.

    Just what I feared though - now I no longer have an excuse for being SLOW! Well it will be lots of fun and hopefully cut down on the DL650 abuse...:D
    #10
  11. sandiegoland

    sandiegoland Adventure Boy®

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    bikeslut and I had a good ride on Sunday morning. Not too many pics (the views into Mexico were a bit hazy), but we successfully we ran that section of the old Tecate Truck Trail that forks off of Kuchamaa Truck Trail (which was new for me). It was a 23% grade compounded by a really loose surface.

    A few memories of the day:

    [​IMG]
    This time it's the real McCoy - a Rattle Snake. In the final drop into Marron Valley it was stretched out and hidden from view until the last second behind a whoopdy in the road. I saw him curl up at the last moment but wasn't confident that I had cleared him with both wheels. We walked back and took a look, and from we could observe from its movements it looked unscathed. This makes the fourth snake in two months I have managed to avoid running over! I'm 0 for 4! :D

    [​IMG]
    This is the US-Mexico border fence looking West at point "LTDBR" (attachment 102500.gpx)

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    This is the US-Mexico border fence looking East at point "LTDBR" (attachment 102500.gpx)


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    Here's a bonus ADVrider FYYFF rock along the border...

    [​IMG]
    This is a pic from a previous ride showing Kuchamaa Truck Trail dropping down. The old Tecate Truck Trail we headed up can be seen forking off to the right at the left most part of the photo...
    #11
  12. bikeslut

    bikeslut Long timer

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    getting a bit warm now, but I'll take the kids out in September. they were not too impressed with rattlesnake picture I took "we saw a bigger one than that..." but they are eager to go tackle some of those roads
    #12
  13. sandiegoland

    sandiegoland Adventure Boy®

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    Heh heeeh!!! :clap


    That's actually the first rattler I've seen in a long time down here in San Diego.
    #13
  14. C2W

    C2W Semi-Gnarly Adventurer

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    I think they are all living in RSF Craig. . . .(Nice PIX):clap
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  15. sandiegoland

    sandiegoland Adventure Boy®

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    They gotta be where all the tasty rodents are, present company excluded of course!! :D
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  16. sandiegoland

    sandiegoland Adventure Boy®

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    edits

    updated the attached GPX file to account for a locked gate on the West approach to Otay Mountain TT.

    updated these tracks on GPXchange for easy viewing with topographic maps...

    Johnny Dakar (formally JohnW) on Sunday (mini Dakar Rally / Baja training)
    [​IMG]
    Climbing back from the Border Monument (Mexico in the background)
    #16
  17. sandiegoland

    sandiegoland Adventure Boy®

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    Some useful BLM overlayed topographic maps of the Otay Mountain (and border areas further east) can be found at http://www.blm.gov/ca/palmsprings/scrmp.html

    Some of the BLM labeled roads are not 100% accurate, but I have found the maps useful to determine which ridge roads they have excluded from the Wilderness Area.

    [​IMG]
    A few of the ridge roads off Otay Mountain Truck Trail have
    to be taken a reduced pace. :D You'd never know it from this
    photo, but the grade on this spur road exceeds 20%. :eek1
    #17
  18. sandiegoland

    sandiegoland Adventure Boy®

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    The Otay Mountain BLM lands OHV staging area in Sycamore Canyon, just east of the Border Patrol checkpoint neat Dulzura, is now locked due to the recent fire. This is what some refer to as the "pink gate" :cry

    There is a good possibility it will remain locked. I'll keep you posted.

    The truck trail over the top is still open. I've taken down my GPS tracks for Sycamore Canyon and will augment my existing Otay Mountain tracks with stuff that remains open as soon as I can verify everything firsthand.
    #18
  19. scottr

    scottr Banned

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    So .... uh ..... do you get 'noticed' by the Border Patrol or DEA out there very often?

    :evil
    #19
  20. rmhrc628

    rmhrc628 Long timer

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    Great photos - especially that last one with the chopper!!!!

    Gees I tell we are lead to beleive that the US border is fortified and has zillions of people stopping anything coming across. I thought it was like the gestapo down there - move and you're dead!!!!

    Those photos make it look fairly open and easy to get through?
    #20