Supposed to be a panel somewhere up the wash that's just behind the Shaman's Panel. Also if you go down the trail to Cottonwood Spr, the narrow canyon going down from the old copper mine is supposed to have a panel. Never been to either tho.
So I tried to go to Shaman's last weekend. I have a 99 4Runner which I have taken a lot of places which I considered pretty rough. But after I crossed into GCNP I ran into a part of the road which had a deep V-shaped ditch running down the middle of it. As I got closer to it I got out and could see that my tires were really almost running on their sides and I was worried about either getting stuck in the ditch or puncturing my sidewalls. Since I didn't have another vehicle or a winch I thought the costs of being wrong were pretty high. I thought a wider stance truck would do much better. But with a 99 4Runner it just seems like I wasn't straddling the ditch enough. So I turned around and left and found other places to visit. Has anyone been on this road in the last month and had any experience with this ditch? Perhaps after all that rain in September it is worse now than before.
4Runner shoulda been no problem..... been in that area three times over the last 15 years. That's about how I found the road every time. really slow going. Never seen it so a sedan could go down it. If it rains the road is like a greased pig, then ruts out. My Nissan makes it....
Drove it last in May of 2011, pretty sure I could have taken a Lincoln all the way down and back that day. Of course, it would have looked kind of like Dukes of Hazzard in a few short sections, but, still, would have been willing to bet good money on getting just about any passenger car down there and back.
I spent two years doing most of my back country travel in an Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera though. A four cylinder no less. Gave me a whole new perspective on where a truck or 4x4 is actually "needed", vs. just "nice to have". Most people would be amazed, I think. Sad part of that was, I had a 3/4 ton 4x4 and a Scout at home, just couldn't afford the gas for them!
I am thinking a Cutlass or a Lincoln would not make it past the June Tanks now and not past the ditch a bit past the boundary now. I think the monsoons in September did a lot of damage.
It wasn't only the roughness and the general chewed upness. It was the ditch and the steep sides of the ditch which meant I'd be driving on my sidewalls and a lot of lateral force pinching in the tires together.
Cierra....... lol. A lot of my first years on really rough roads throughout Arizona were with a Volkswagen beetle, not even baja'd. So I can appreciate my decently built Nissan off road a lot. Need better than a P series tire for a lot of sidewall rolling......
I'm a little bit confused (natural state...). "P series" and "light truck" are mutually exclusive. Tires that are P's aren't LT's (light truck) and vice versa, light truck tires aren't P rated. Pretty sure the Dueller AT's are LT's though.
Not that it makes any difference to whether you should have continued past your comfort zone - that is 100% your call to make and I sure would not second guess it.
And it does sound like the road is a lot worse than when I was last there. The Park Service has quite a reputation for not doing any repairs on roads within the boundaries there too. Hopefully, that rep isn't TOO well earned...
My 4Runner came new with P tires so I never really questioned it after that. And when I have bought new tires since then none of the tire stores ever mentioned LT. I never do any towing or heavy loads and the 99 4Runner is not large. So maybe that is why.
LT's give more rubber footprint and on the sides, then the load range B's are 4ply, C's 6 ply, D's 8ply, E's are 10ply. I usually get C's just cause I am more on highway now. E's will kill you on the ride on a small truck. Helps even on just gravel roads....a little tougher for cuts, abrasions on the sidewall.