Monday, May 16, 2016

A Hike to the 'Magic Spot'

We call this place the 'Magic Spot' because every time we bring friends here, we see something spectacular, fascinating, interesting... magical. One time we saw a Golden Eagle's nest with two Eaglets looking down on us from the cliffs above. Another time, we saw two gigantic Tortoise gobbling Spring flowers in a wash. One night at dusk, we saw a whole family of Great Horned Owls atop the Cliffs, all hooting in unison. That was something! This time we saw beautiful clouds and wonderful, shifting light which really showed off the rocks to their best. It's an easy hike into the rock formations from the turn-out on the Geo Tour Road. The turn-out is about a mile past the California Riding and Hiking Trail on the western side. Check it out some time. Hopefully, it will be a 'Magical' experience for you too.






Monday, May 9, 2016

Light and Shadow in Hidden Valley

I like to go to this one area at the base of Tortoise Rock in Hidden Valley several times a year. The light is always different and even though I photograph the same rocks, the changing angles of the light always makes it a new experience.








Monday, May 2, 2016

49 Palms Oasis Trail-A Triathlete's Delight

So, if you're one of those... you park your car, run up the stairs to the top of the ridge, cruise along the top looking down in to the bowl of the valley below, past the Red Barrel patch, and then you begin the long descent down in to the valley where the Palms Oasis is located. After a brief rest, you turn around and run back up, through the rocks, up the other set up stairs, cruise the ridge and then down again to the parking lot. However, if you're like me, you did all this at an 'amble', enjoying the workout of the 'up and down', but mostly the views, the Red Barrels and the shapely rocks along the way. The Oasis is the topper. There in the shade, you can rest, find a place to have lunch and then leisurely head back up the hill. The best time to go is early morning or at the beginning of Spring, just after the rains. There's usually an abundance of flowers of all kinds along the trail. This day, everything seemed to be spent, but it was still a nice hike. Try it sometime.

The Stairs Up

Red Barrel Patch


The Long Way Down

Palms In The Distance Seen From The Rocks

Approaching The Palms

The Oasis

The Stairs On The Return
Shapely Rocks Along The Way

Monday, April 25, 2016

The Year of the Mallow

We were biking on the road up to Keys View the other morning and I noticed that the area between Cap Rock and Juniper Flats was chock full of Mallow, meadows of Mallow. Usually, you see Mallow by the side of the road, but this was the first time I had seen it spread deep inland. So, I came back the next morning, parked at Juniper Flats and walked through the meadows toward Cap Rock. What a treat, it was like being in Monet's painting 'Field of Red Poppies', but Mallow. I spent a couple of hours wandering about, crawling around on my hands and knees and gradually going blind with color because there was just too much to see. Take a little walk there the next time you're in Joshua Tree National Park. You'll be charmed.



  
  






Monday, April 11, 2016

The Recent Rains Have Made For Some Fantastic Cloud Displays

After the driveway at our house disappeared, once again, with the recent heavy rains... I decided to take a drive through Joshua Tree National Park and do a little 'Cloud Chasing'. It turned out to be a good day indeed.