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I wish to try Big Bend this year. Wish to find out where to gain the backcountry permit and find out if boondocking is possible with a big rig. I use free camping app and see that lots of sites are size restrictive. Can someone set me straight with some tips or even GPS locations for 14 Day locations and a link to where to gain the permit? 

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Many back country sites are open, but very few can you get a RV into.  Over 50% of the dry camping sites at Rio Grande Village are OK for 32' long and longer.  

Everything is by reservation ONLY.  Here is the reservation website:  https://www.recreation.gov/search?q=Big Bend National Park&entity_id=2584&entity_type=recarea

I think your chances of finding many open sites before April 1 is slim to none, other that a few days now and then.  

Chisos Basin CG has very short campsites and the road is not recommended for motorhomes over about 24'.

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14 hours ago, Al F said:

Chisos Basin CG has very short campsites and the road is not recommended for motorhomes over about 24'.

The sign just before the parking area where you can leave an RV or trailer reads "Road Not Recommended for Trailer over 20 Feet and RVS over 24 Feet". I took a picture of it. What it doesn't tell you is the amount a tow truck will charge and the amount of money you will be charged should you end up in trouble on that road or blocking it. They told us at the Visitor Center and it is enough to stand your hair on end. I'm used to Colorado mountain driving but those hairpin turns going in made me a little uncomfortable.

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The tour buses drive up there for people to stay at the lodge (motel).   

About 4 years ago we drove our 29' Class A up and stayed in the Chisos Basin CG at one of about 2-3 campsites that is long enough for our rig.  It was very difficult to level the RV though.  The hair pin turns were very tight, but we just took them very, very slow and we were fine.    Before we took our RV up we drove up in our toad, selected and paid for our site, then went back down for the RV.

Not saying I recommend taking a rig over 24' long up there.  

BTW, the campground hosts many times have RV's up there in the 35' long range. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

That road is a little hairy with a trailer or motor home over the recommended length. when camp host are moving in the rangers shut the road down and only allow the host to drive up. this way they can use the whole road without worry.

i have well over 1 million miles in a truck under my belt and would not attempt this in longer than the recommended length by more than a couple of feet.   

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There are several designated places to boon dock in the park itself.  I know one couple who spends a month every year out there with a 45'+ trailer pulled by a Volvo truck.  However, Chiso Basin is a definite no-go for a big rig.  That road is a hoot on a motorcycle in low gear, if that tells you anything.

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On 11/9/2020 at 10:33 AM, Al F said:

The tour buses drive up there for people to stay at the lodge (motel).   

About 4 years ago we drove our 29' Class A up and stayed in the Chisos Basin CG at one of about 2-3 campsites that is long enough for our rig.  It was very difficult to level the RV though.  The hair pin turns were very tight, but we just took them very, very slow and we were fine.    Before we took our RV up we drove up in our toad, selected and paid for our site, then went back down for the RV.

Not saying I recommend taking a rig over 24' long up there.  

BTW, the campground hosts many times have RV's up there in the 35' long range. 

I spoke to a campground host there and she said it’s a big deal to get their rig in.....they close the road and have an escort etc. they have to commit to a certain amount of time.

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42 minutes ago, rickeieio said:

There are several designated places to boon dock in the park itself.  I know one couple who spends a month every year out there with a 45'+ trailer pulled by a Volvo truck.  

I'd be interested in knowing where they park that big rig for a month.

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I don't recall the names of the places they like.  We ran into them when they came to Study Butte RV to dump and refill tanks, do laundry, etc, and spent a nice evening with them.  They used to be regulars on the HDT forum under the signature of oltimer.  His name is Dick and hers is......

They have a custom Spacecraft rv, about 48', pull with a Volvo 630 with a Jeep and a motorcycle on the deck.  

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On 11/26/2020 at 1:53 PM, 2gypsies said:

I'd be interested in knowing where they park that big rig for a month.

Two places inside BBNP come to mind for a very large RV.  Hannold Draw a few miles N of Panther Junction and Government Springs at the start of Grapevine Hills Rd.   Also possibly K-Bar #2. 

However there is a 14 day limit for each back country campsite.  Also in the peak visitor months of winter there is 14 day stay limit for the park.  So unless it is October or April I'm not sure how they spend a month inside the park.

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We visited BB a couple of years ago. We ended up staying some distance away, since it was Christmas time and we thought we'd be able to talk to our children. NO cell service in BB for the most part. Also, at that time there were few campgrounds with hookups.

Do plan on spending a fair amount of time there, though. We spent three days and that wasn't enough. We'll be back.

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13 hours ago, kb0zke said:

We visited BB a couple of years ago. We ended up staying some distance away, since it was Christmas time and we thought we'd be able to talk to our children. NO cell service in BB for the most part. Also, at that time there were few campgrounds with hookups.

Do plan on spending a fair amount of time there, though. We spent three days and that wasn't enough. We'll be back.

The only place inside the park with hookups is the concession operated place in RGV (Rio Grande Village).  It is a asphalt parking lot with hookups and the parking places spaced very close together.

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  • 2 weeks later...
5 hours ago, masterdrago said:

If you do spend time in the Big Bend area, make sure to drive the beautiful road (170) out towards Presidio. And make sure to make the trip back as it gets close to sunset (the golden hour). The colors and views are very much worth the drive.

 

5 hours ago, agesilaus said:

That is thru the State Park

SR-170 goes through a tiny bit of Big Bend State Park, the part along the Rio Grande River.  The drive is pretty, especially the "big hill" a short (about 3/4 mile) 14% grade going up and back down.    

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The folks I referred to as staying a month, stayed for two weeks IN the park, went and spent a night in a commercial cg to drain tanks and do laundry, then went back to the park for another two weeks.  They've been doing it for many years.

FM170 is indeed a nice drive.  I've done it many times on a motorcycle.  Any time of day is beautiful, but be aware, Presidio County is open range, and at night, all the animals are black.  Cows can do a lot of damage as they come through the windshield.

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