This is Friday’s post February 6th 2015
Not a dog barking, not a rooster crowing, no cars going by, & no gloomy television newscasts to start the day off on the wrong foot with. Mornings in our part time house on the road always kick off with a quiet peaceful start:))
MORNING AT OUR HOUSE
We were out the door by 8:10 into the cool desert air with the Jeep headed north up Black Canyon Road again. No stops along the way this time as we headed ourselves straight away for Mojave’s Joshua Tree forest about 40 minutes northwest of our location. Black Canyon Road to Mojave Road & turned left heading ourselves to the Kelso-Cima Road. A right turn here took us to a little tumble down whistle stop of a place called Cima where we picked up Cima Road itself & traveled 6 miles west to the Teutonia Peak trail. This is the trailhead for a 3 mile trail in the Joshua Tree forest.
THIS GREAT BULGE IN THE EARTH AHEAD IS CALLED CIMA DOME
HEADING FOR MOJAVE’S JOSHUA TREE FOREST
About 200 yards short of the trailhead on the right side of the road is another Mojave National Preserve attraction. This is the location of a white cross atop a jumble of rocks marking a memorial to all World War 1 fallen soldiers. There are also a couple boondocking sites here with one large enough for a rig our size & the other one better suited to smaller Class C type RV’s. The larger site has a picnic table. This memorial is owned & operated by Veterans of Foreign Wars.
KELLY STANDING IN THE LARGER BOONDOCKING SITE
PHEEBS & THE JEEP IN THE THE 2ND SMALLER BOONDOCKING SITE BEHIND THE MEMORIAL
Just up the road is a small parking area at the Teutonia Peak trailhead. An easy walk along a sandy path leads one through stands of Joshua Trees for as far as the eye can see. The further we walk the more trees we see. Boulders appear along the way giving perspective to the trees & remind us a bit of of Joshua Tree National Park. We can hear the sweetest bird songs but couldn’t seem to locate the birds themselves. This trail has a ‘slight’ but steady incline. We are in Shadow Valley walking across the massive Cima Dome. Trail leads to a nearby mountainous ridge with an overlook but we knew we would not be going that far so just enjoyed our walk for maybe half an hour with a rest stop then back out to the trailhead. At once point I climbed atop of jumble of rocks & could see traffic moving on Interstate 15 twelve miles to the west. Back at the Jeep it was peanut butter sandwich time.
A word about the roads here in the preserve. Not the best & on most all paved roads one has to keep an Eagle eye out ahead for the many, many, potholes in the decades old hardtop. I’m wondering if some of these roads were paved in the 50’s & forgot about. One could really damage a wheel & especially compact cars with smaller tires. In some places the road looks like a patchwork quilt with all the black tar repairs. So be forewarned & be very aware of the road ahead of you especially on Kelbaker Road north of Kelso. Slow down & take your time. And did you know this preserve encompasses over a million acres. And here’s one of the best parts of the Preserve…..no off-road vehicles allowed, only street legal vehicles. So no kids on noisy dirt bikes ripping & tearing up the pristine desert. Just wandering desert winds to soothe one’s tired soul.
CAN YOU SEE THE LITTLE ALIENS IN THIS JOSHUA TREE SHADOW
From Mojave’s Joshua Forest it was back down Cima road with a stop in Cima to wave at a passing freight train. Our next destination was the old railway stop at Kelso. This is a true oasis in the dry surrounding desert. Most impressive of course is the Kelso Depot itself. What a fine looking southwestern building this is. Just love the southwest Spanish style architecture. I have seen photos of this building but it is far more impressive in person. Love the big Palm trees out front. And a train even went through while we were there. We were looking forward to seeing the Depot’s interior but as luck would have it a Park Ranger there informed us a planned power outage was in effect so it wasn’t open. But, we’ll be back in a day or two when we check out a large sandy area known as the Kelso Sand Dunes.
ABOUT ALL THAT’S HERE IN CIMA
KELLY WAVES AT A PASSING TRAIN & THE ENGINEER GIVES HER 2 TOOTS:))
It was high noon & the day was really heating up so time to head back for the cooler climes of our rig. Scooted south down scenic Kelbaker road paralleling the towering Providence Mountains. Hooked up with Interstate-40 & swung east to Essex road. About 20 miles from I-40 to the rig. It had been an hour’s drive from Kelso Depot to our boondocking spot south of ‘Hole In The Wall. Sure was nice to feel that smooth blacktop under the Jeep on I-40.
ROLLING INTO KELSO THINGS LOOKED A LITTLE DESOLATE BUT THEN……:))
WE ARRIVED AT THE KELSO DEPOT
AND YES THAT IS KELLY PEAKING IN THE WINDOWS DOWN THERE
THE RESTAURANT IS NO LONGER IN OPERATION
HEY & WE EVEN HAD A TRAIN GO BY WHILE THERE
LOOKING NORTH ALONG THE RAIL LINE AS WE ROLL OUT OF KELSO JUNCTION…TWO TALL TOWERS ON THE RIGHT CONTAIN WATER FOR FIRE FIGHTING IN THE AREA
SOUTHBOUND ALONG THE MOJAVE’S PROVIDENCE MOUNTAINS
Doug & Yuma rolled in a few minutes later & Doug had a problem. While out hiking near his rig he accidentally dropped his cell phone in the desert somewhere close by & had not been able to find out. He needed a second cell phone to look for his lost cell phone. He hoped by calling the lost cell phones number he could hear it ringing nearby. He left Yuma with us & with our cell phone headed back to his camp to try ringing up his lost phone. Yuma sure missed his Dad right away running from window to window desperately looking for him. Kelly gave Yuma & Pheebs some treats & that helped dispel Yuma’s fears. He was good boy all the time he was with us & never caused any problems. Wasn’t long before Pheebs, Yuma, & Kelly were all sacked out on Kelly’s bed.
HEY WE GOT A DOGGY ON OUR DASH
YUMA RUNS FROM WINDOW TO WINDOW LOOKING FOR DOUG
HERE’S YUMA TELLING KELLY HIS TROUBLES
A PRETTY RELAXED LOOKING BUNCH
Doug came back a couple hours later to pick up Yuma but his cell phone hunt turned up nothing. Kelly & I had already decided this afternoon to take Saturday off & do the Kelso Dunes probably Sunday or Monday so we are going over to Doug’s camp in the morning to help him look again for his lost cell phone. We will probably then do a hike over around the information center which isn’t too far from where we are docked in the desert. Might turn the rig around too so our side door is facing the cooler north side instead of the hot sunny side to the south. All & all………..another good day:))
YUMA SEEMED FASCINATED WITH LOOKING AT HIMSELF IN THE MIRROR
GROANER’S CORNER:(( My next-door neighbor and I frequently borrow things from each other. Not long ago, when I requested his ladder, he told me he had lent it to his son. Recalling a saying my grandmother used to repeat, I recited, "You should never lend anything to your kids, because you will never get it back." With that, he responded, "Well, it's not even my ladder. It's my dad's."
"How is it that you never married?"
"I just never met the right woman ... I guess I've been looking for the perfect girl."
"Oh, come on now, surely you have met at least one girl that you wanted to marry."
"Yes, there was one ... once. I guess she was the one perfect girl ... the only perfect girl I really ever met. She was just the right everything ... I really mean that she was the perfect girl for me."
"Well, why didn't you marry her?"
"She was looking for the perfect man."
Al, beautiful photos of the depot. We need to get back there and visit it again. Maybe a train will even come by!ReplyDelete
Sad to hear about Doug's phone. Mine slipped out of my pocket and was wedged between hubby's car seats! That sure gave me a scare!
The Kelso Depot is beautiful. It's a shame that rail travel is such a difficult thing here in the U.S. For people who don't like to fly, it's the only option & typically an expensive one at that. So glad Yuma settled down with Kelly & Pheebs--sure hope Doug finds his phone. I couldn't find mine yesterday & when I called it, discovered it was right in my knitting bag where I'd left it. Sheesh...ReplyDelete
What a great location you're exploring, and one that's new to us. We usually whiz thru the Mojave but turn south near Barstow. This is definitely added to our growing list of boondocking sites. Thanks for all the photos!ReplyDelete
Seems all the 'kids' with their noisy destructive ATV's and dune buggies around here have grey hair! ;)ReplyDelete
Wonderful post, Al. So glad you are enjoying the preserve. It was a new find for us last year and we really are looking forward to returning, in spite of the potholes! The depot is wonderful, so glad you are going to return, and we didn't make it out to the dunes because of the washboards! hopefully we will tackle that one next time!ReplyDelete
I lost my phone while touring the Bridges of Madison County. Retraced our steps back to all the bridges and found the phone the next day.ReplyDelete
Love that hike that you did, the scenery is gorgeous. We will have to keep this in mind for whenever we head to that part of the country to explore.ReplyDelete
The Kelso Depot is a beautiful looking building out in the middle of no where!
Just another wonderful desert day, and more great pictures.ReplyDelete
Love the diversity of this monument. The infrastructure needed help when I was there over 10 years ago, when the cave was still open for tours. This is not an easy duty station to fill with Ranger(s). Sounds like your jumping into summer weather already. Think I'll be happier at the higher elevation of Joshua Tree, hopefully next week. Yet you wet my appetite to explore Mojave more.ReplyDelete
That's a great photo of Kelly and the two dogs on the bed. What a relaxed group!ReplyDelete
We drove straight through the Preserve also, though we did stop at the Kelso Depot. What a great place to explore.ReplyDelete
I really liked your article and writings. cima certificate is my passion since I were a BBA student.Now I'm practicing with Practice Test Academy for passing the exam on my first siting.ReplyDelete