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2016 Trip Report - Grand Canyon of the Tecopa

Grand Canyon of the Tecopa

Friday, April 1, 2016 • By Bob Jaussaud 

Photos: Bob Jaussaud & Coop Cooper


There are relatively few people that have seen the Grand Canyon of the Tecopa. There are fewer yet who have hiked to the bottom of the canyon. Unfortunately, our trip only added 2 to the list of those that have done so. Aw well...

The hike is written up in Bill Mann’s book, Volumn 2. Bill said that the hike was not for the faint hearted, and he was right. We found the trail head as Bill described and 10 of us started down. As the trail grew steeper and more exposed, most deemed it prudent to turn around and return to the top. Glenn Shaw and I were the only ones left when we arrived at the bottom. My hat is off to Glenn. It had only been about 6 weeks since he had had open heart surgery.

Our goal was the abandoned ranch site at the bottom of the canyon. Lois Clark, co-editor of the Baker Valley News, had been raised at this ranch. Her father was Harry “Two Gun” Adams. He came to the East Mojave in the mid 1920’s and worked at China Ranch. It must have been in the late 1920’s or early 1930’s when he built his ranch in the Grand Canyon of the Tecopa. Originally, there was a road that connected China Ranch with Harry’s ranch, but these days the area is preserved and the road is long gone. At Harry’s ranch site, we found a brand-like inscription in the cement, “HMA.”

The hike back to the top of the canyon was steep, but going up seemed easier than the decent. Ron Ross met us half way up thinking we might need help and/or encouragement. Reaching the top, we discovered we were late for lunch, but not too late to head for China Ranch and a date shake. Our group of rim watchers included Danny and Norma Siles, Nancy Maclean, Graham Cooper (Coop), George Gilster, Sue and Mignon. Thanks to all for being good sports and making the day fun.