5. December 2010 17:44
I had barely rinsed off the dirt and dust from our Thanksgiving trip to Carrizo Gorge, when we found ourselves heading back out to Anza Borrego to meet up with a couple friends for a day hike. Our destination this time, was at the opposite end of the Anza Borrego Desert, a remote area called Rockhouse Valley.
While the adjacent canyon, informally titled Rockhouse Canyon, shares its' namesake with our favorite hiking area to the south, the two areas are worlds apart. Rockhouse Canyon "north" is a curving, narrow canyon with vertical walls on both sides which eventually opens up to the broad expanse of Rockhouse Valley. A majority of... [More]
29. November 2010 05:15
Our annual Anza Borrego Thanksgiving camping trip is something we always look forward to. While it sounds like a big hassle to lug all the food, tables, barbecues and drinks out to the desert, the rewards of sunshine and desert solitude are worth it. Nightime temperatures were in the the low 30's, but the Maggiolina Rooftop Tent kept us pretty warm. We camped in Carrizo Gorge, which is our favorite area of Anza Borrego, and did day hikes up the East Fork as well as Four Frogs Canyon.The Ocotillo are simply amazing this time of year. During the dry summer months the Ocotillo resemble dried up sticks poking out of the desert soil. On... [More]
13. November 2010 05:17
On a recent overnight camping trip to Mount Laguna I snapped this picture of the Anza Borrego Desert far below.If you look closely you can see the Salton Sea in the upper left of the picture.
29. October 2010 15:01
High up on a ridge overlooking the vast expanse of Anza Borrego 's Indian Valley is a room size rock shelter once used by Native Americans to honor and perhaps foretell the coming of the summer solstice. To the Native Americans, the sun was all powerful and dictated when crops would ripen and perhaps when the time had come to move to higher more hospitable elevations.
To monitor the arrival of "the longest day of the year" native american priests or shamans would paint pictographs which would illuminate at the right time of the year on the rising sun. It is also believed that rocks were arranged in a ... [More]
25. October 2010 19:53
The first meeting of the year for the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park Botany Society will be held Monday, November 8, at 10 a.m. in the Daniel Discovery Lab at the Park Visitor Center. A freelecture on the evolution of plant photosynthesis by Dr. Joanne Ingwall will precede the business meeting, and all are invited to attend. New certification classes for the Botany Society will begin January 3, 2011. Anyone interested inattending the classes should contact Larry Hendrickson at email@example.com.
Also, mark your calendars for the 2nd Annual Botany Festival and Plant Sale on Saturday, November 27, ... [More]
14. October 2010 21:32
Jon Grasson has done an excellent job of putting together an awesome resource for Desert lovers everywhere.
Dezert Magazine, an online periodical, is reminiscent of the printed Desert Magazine that ceased publication in 1985 after 40 + years of circulation . I was honored when John asked to include one of our blog entries in the first issue.
Check it out if you have a chance.
15. August 2010 17:57
Many people never see a Bighorn out in the Anza Borrego Desert. The once thriving Bighorn population has now dwindled to somewhere around 280 by official Park estimates. The Bighorns blend in very well with their environment and will stand still for hours making them impossible to see.
On two previous occasions we have been lucky enough to encounter the elusive Bighorn. The first time was two hours into a hike to the Goat Canyon Trestle, while our second encounter was with a bachelor herd of Bighorn rams near Indian Hill in the southern end of Anza Borrego.
Our latest encounter did not require a 3 hour hike and in fact occurred when Lin... [More]
15. July 2010 14:51
If you really want to escape the summer beach crowds of San Diego, but still want to play in the sand, you could always take a 2+ hour drive east to the Anza Borrego Desert.
Our motivation was simple, June gloom had continued two weeks into July, shrouding the coast in clouds. We had forgotten what sunshine felt like.
Mind you this is not journey for those who can't take a little heat. When we pulled up at the Carrizo Gorge turnoff, temperatures were already close to 100' and promised to rise throughout the morning.
Suprisingly, we were not the only foolhardy souls out in Anza Borrego braving the triple digit temperatures. When Mary ... [More]
13. July 2010 17:33
Not that I am terribly surprised, but I was hopeful that Forest Supervisor Metz would show some backbone and stand up to SDG&E / Sempra.
Unfortunately this was not the case and Supervisor Metz caved to political and corporate pressure and agreed to let SDG&E route the Sunrise Powerlink through the Cleveland National Forest.
This is a sad day for San Diego and anyone who likes to get out and enjoy nature with out the tell-tale signs of man.
The character of the Cleveland National Forest will be forever changed due to corporate greed, deceitful tactics and the unwillingness of the US Forest Service to put their foot down and say "No"... [More]
1. May 2010 15:36
Tucked away in the southern end of the Anza Borrego Desert is an engineering marvel that, due to its' remoteness, has only been viewed by a relatively small number of people. The Goat Canyon Trestle was built in 1932 after an earthquake collapsed one of the tunnels of the Carrizo Gorge section of the San Diego Arizona Railroad.
At two hundred feet tall and 750 feet long, it remains to this day the longest, tallest curved wooden trestle ever built in the United States. The sheer ruggedness of the mountainous terrain as well as the searing desert temperatures warranted the name "The Impossible Railroad".
The preferred route is to park near Mo... [More]