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Thread started 09 Feb 2014 (Sunday) 10:55
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Bisti Badlands, New Mexico - Weather question

 
El ­ Duderino
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Feb 09, 2014 10:55 |  #1

Kind of a shot in the dark, but I figured someone here might now.

I want to plan a trip there early April. But, I have no idea what to expect from the weather.

Has anyone been there around that time of year? Dust storms? Thunderstorms? Snow?

Any help is much appreciated!


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sparker1
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Feb 09, 2014 11:35 |  #2

I was there the last week of April, 2011. There was some rain the first of the week, might have been more before we arrived. Anyway, rain pretty much renders Bisti inaccessible for a while. That soil becomes a slick, gooey mess, very difficult to walk in. A couple days after the rain stopped, it was OK. Temps were mild, no wind at all.

Since the weather is unpredictable, you have to take a chance. You know it's hot in summer, cold in winter, so go when the temps are good. I was there once in Sept and it was pretty good all around.


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El ­ Duderino
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Feb 09, 2014 11:54 |  #3

Yeah, I don't have 4WD or anything, just a sedan. I'd probably be screwed if bad weather hit.


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HighPlainsPhotographer
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Feb 09, 2014 15:06 |  #4

I have been there in late April and May. It rained on me in April, made the hiking around Bisti like walking on greased poop. May was a little rain and a crazy dust storm. I would not have any hesitation to go in April or May again, just be prepared for changing conditions while you are wandering around out there.

No vehicle access issues, the road is paved most of the way out of Farmington, just a mile or so of good dirt/gravel road back to the parking area. I think any great amount of precipitation to make the area inaccessible in a passenger car is unlikely.


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Todd ­ Lambert
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Feb 09, 2014 15:11 |  #5

Yeah, as as been said... The road in is fine. The weather can be very unpredictable and always prepare for cold weather here. It can get very cold at night. I froze my butt off on a trip out there in October. By :am the winds picked up and the temp dropped over 30 degrees from the daytime.




  
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gordonb
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Feb 09, 2014 15:34 |  #6

You will be just fine in April. It gets a little windy here in the Spring and I hope you bring some rain. We desperately need it.


Have fun

Gordon


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KoalaCowboy
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Feb 09, 2014 19:30 |  #7

HighPlainsPhotographer wrote in post #16676464 (external link)
I have been there in late April and May. It rained on me in April, made the hiking around Bisti like walking on greased poop. May was a little rain and a crazy dust storm. I would not have any hesitation to go in April or May again, just be prepared for changing conditions while you are wandering around out there.

No vehicle access issues, the road is paved most of the way out of Farmington, just a mile or so of good dirt/gravel road back to the parking area. I think any great amount of precipitation to make the area inaccessible in a passenger car is unlikely.

Echoing HighPlainsPhotographer​, I would HIGHLY advise having a handheld or wrist worn GPS, and a flashlight (or two) in addition to the headlamp! Also clear wraparound glasses so you can see at night if it gets windy or dusty!

I
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gordonb
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Feb 09, 2014 22:18 |  #8

It is also possible that you will not have cell phone service. There are a lot of dead zones on the Rez.
bring water in the summer bring lots of water. Dress in layers, I always wear a coleman frame backpack with heater meals and other stuff when I go, but I only live 37 miles away..

Have Fun
Watch out for skinwalkers too. ( haha)

Gordon


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sparker1
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Feb 10, 2014 04:55 |  #9

El Duderino wrote in post #16676075 (external link)
Yeah, I don't have 4WD or anything, just a sedan. I'd probably be screwed if bad weather hit.

As Shawn says, driving is not an issue. The problem with rain is difficulty walking on the slick goo.


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rparchen
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Feb 10, 2014 07:52 |  #10

I was there last early April and the weather was fine for me. Dry with broken clouds and I don't remember it being cold at all. Pretty sure I wore just shorts and a hoody, even for night shooting. Great area to visit and shoot.


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El ­ Duderino
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Mar 09, 2014 17:18 |  #11

Really appreciate the help. One last question. As far as tent camping, what are the options? Any place to car camp? Or do you have to hike in a bit?


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rparchen
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Mar 09, 2014 20:48 |  #12

I slept in my car along the side of the dirt roads and wasn't worried at all. I think I remember seeing some tents in the area as well so it seems there would be plenty of spots for a tent.


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sparker1
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Mar 09, 2014 20:51 |  #13

I've seen people camp right in the parking lot, no reason I can think of not to.


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Todd ­ Lambert
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Mar 09, 2014 21:54 |  #14

I camped in the south parking lot a few times now, with the latest being a week ago. No worries at all. it's BLM land so you can pretty much do as you please.

Btw it was 18 deg and about 30mph winds a week ago. I froze my ass off!




  
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gordonb
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Mar 09, 2014 22:16 |  #15

Do be aware of the washes when you camp. We had some rain a few days ago but nothing major . Just be aware of the weather especially in the afternoons.

Have Fun


Gordon

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Bisti Badlands, New Mexico - Weather question
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