Sunday, March 31, 2013

spring fling

Roadtrip! A quick trip last week (actually an incredibly long drive) landed me in Palm Springs. I would be missing a week of riding, but visiting my parents, and was furloughed from work, good time to go visit the desert.

The drive down is VERY long. I am not good at being cooped up in a stall (the car). Sometimes there is lots to see, but it is miles of rolling hills, then trees (first walnut, then almond, then citrus and more), then miles of flat much drier desert.

rolling green hills

aqueduct and oil wells

windmills (these things are huge!)

But once in Palm Springs there is great architecture (I love mid-century modern), desert hikes, good food, a great pool, and horses (more on that later). We took a lovely hike out to a palm oasis.

beware (especially when taking close-ups)

not all is cactus

after the bloom, still beautiful
Lost Palms Canyon
the folks hiking back UP from the oasis, steep!

giant ocotillo

a desert friend

We went to a polo match, but that deserves a whole post of its own!

And where did we go next? Here's a hint:

Any guesses?
looks almost fake (the scene of many movies)

Joshua Tree National Park. Gorgeous. Monumental. Easier to show you the photos than to try and find words.

Joshua tree (which is a type of yucca, not a tree) in bloom

Amazing view (click to see even better)

Hope they found him...

yucca and rocks
Hidden Valley (reminded me of the planet in Galaxy Quest, yes, I'm THAT cultured)

didn't make it

Some people don't like the desert, they think that it is so barren. But it is so full of beautiful things, just not the obviousness we are used to thinking of as beautiful. I love to visit, though I don't think I could live there.

Driving home we had to stop for dinosaurs. Awesome dinosaurs. I wanted to stop not just because roadside attractions are cool, but because these dinos feature in one of my favorite silly movies, Pee Wee's Big Adventure. You can go into the dinosaur too, but the museum inside is not my thing, just seeing the outside was enough.

rarrrr! my tiny arms!

brontosaurus looks on dispassionately (or worried)

Then another 9 hours home. Stuck in the stall. It still was a fun adventure.


  1. Oh J Trees in bloom! How lucky you visited for that!

    1. We got lucky, It's a pretty bad year for wildflowers.

  2. Never been to the desert (no such luck in Ireland) but it looks amazing. I love all the shapes, they're almost sculptural.

    1. Well I've never been to Ireland, so I'm jealous of that! All that green... (all my family is from there, one day I'll get there).

      Definitely sculptural. I love the rocks, some as giant as houses or larger, with tiny cacti or flowers beneath.