Thursday, May 11, 2017

2017 CROSS-COUNTRY ROAD TRIP - APRIL 23RD, 2017 - JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK

We are home!  We arrived yesterday around six in the evening.  A great day's drive but so glad to be back.  It felt very strange not to have to go anywhere today.  Except we shopped for groceries.  Things have already returned to normal and in some ways it is hard to believe that we were ever gone.  I have many days of journaling to share with you, with lots of photos.  Thanks again for all the great comments.  And now for today's post.



Sunday, April 23rd, 2017

Leaving our hotel in Yuma, Arizona at 9.14 a.m.

Odometer: 51955



We are heading to Joshua Tree National Park, California.  The first time we visited was four years ago.  It left an impression. I fell in love with the desert on our first trip across country almost 40 years ago.  We have visited over the years, not often but I felt very happy to be back again.  



But first, last night Gregg's cousin very kindly offered us some leftover beef ribs from the super dinner she made us for our journey.  Guess what we had for breakfast this morning?  They didn't even make it out of the hotel.  They were delicious cold and made a different kind of breakfast than we normally have, but we have learned that doing what we don't normally do on this trip is fun. Thanks Cuz!

9.22 a.m. we crossed into California. We didn't realize we were that close to the state line.  

9.29 a.m. we passed the agricultural checkpoint, to make sure we had no fruit or vegetables.  We knew from living in California many years ago that this would happen, and didn't have any produce.

9.32 a.m.  Our son and daughter-in-law called.  A great way to start our day.  They are very interested in this trip of ours, and have said they would like to do something similar one day.  Great talking.  We miss them.

10.04 a.m. we went under an overpass and there were hundred's of swallows flying around. Looked  up and there were also hundreds of nests, almost overlapping, very closely knitted together under the concrete ledge. Such a neat thing to see literally in the blink of an eye, because we were moving along at a pretty fast rate of speed.  The speed limits out here are 80 mph if I haven't mentioned that before.

10.18 a.m. we have been driving through the Imperial Valley, where all the lettuce comes from, and lots of other produce that we enjoy on our tables. We have been passing fields upon fields of crops we can't identify, all across the country.  We tried guessing what we thought they might be.  A few farmers actually put signs next to each crop and took the mystery out of it.  We were grateful!   

10.33 a.m. stopped in Bradley for gas.

10.50 a.m. Another crop we didn't know, but there was a large field full of small white egrets, and we saw a few flying over the road. 

We are 41 miles from Joshua Tree. 

We passed by Bombay Beach a while ago. 

11.43 a.m. there are vineyards along dusty roads. Gregg is more adventurous than me, he decided to get off the beaten path and I am always happy he takes the initiative.  He also has a great sense of direction.  I do not.   GPS was a wonderful invention for people like me, but when GPS is out of range, I have that large print Atlas book on the back seat.  Wouldn't leave home without one.









We also came across a forest of palm trees. 








More unidentified crops....



Orchards.....



proving anything can grow in hostile terraine with  enough water.



There were large lines of flowering fences.....






and also ones made out of palm fronds.



We soon reached Joshua Tree National Park.   It was as I remembered and I felt elated to be here again.  I love this park and it was at a time when a lot of the cacti were blooming.  


One of the places I enjoyed was the Cholla (pronounced Choy-a) Garden, and I remembered not to wear open toed sandals this time, opting for a sturdy walking shoe.  The dropped cactus spines can make a walk through the garden tortuous.  You also have to be very careful not to brush up against them.  The reason for that can be found here.  


The blooms are very pretty though.  You just have to use your common sense.  And definitely no dogs allowed here.  


Someone didn't get the message.  I see flip-flops on those feet.  


A couple stopped us and asked if we could take a photo of them.  We obliged and they in turn took one of us.


I will do another post about Joshua Tree sometime, but for now we are exiting at the north entrance, and the town of Twenty Nine Palms is in the valley below.



3.44 p.m. we found a Thai restaurant which was excellent.  They have a link on Facebook if you would like to take a look. 


This was our first proper meal of the day, but we can't remember the names of our dishes. 


Both were chicken curries and both were delicious. 


A friendly young lady took care of us, and as in all restaurants I enjoy looking at the decor.  


To get to our car parked out back, we walked down a narrow hallway and found the artwork, all with a desert theme.














5.33 p.m. we are at our hotel in Victorville, California.  

32 comments:

  1. I see why you wanted to return! The cactus flowers are beautiful! And both food and artwork at the restaurant look wonderful! A palm tree forest! I have never seen or heard of such a thing. How very strange, like something magical in a fairy story. The flowers in the hedges are beautiful.

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    1. Thanks Ginny, this palm tree forest was set in neat little rows. I have never seen as many as I saw this day. It was incredible. I wondered who would buy such huge palm trees but I expect hotels and shopping malls and other big businesses might be their main buyers.

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  2. Both Dear and I grew up in Southern California so it's fun to visit these familiar spots with you. I'm headed to Orange County to visit family in a couple of weeks. Your dishes looked delicious from the Thai restaurant. Welcome home!!

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    1. Thank you Ellen, I am happy you enjoyed my post, and it is great to be back. Enjoy your trip to California.

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  3. Beautiful photos and images, Denise, and the food looks delicious!

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  4. The desert vistas look incredible. Harsh, unforgiving - and beautiful.

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  5. The most interesting is forest of palms

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    1. Thank you Gosia, to come across so many palm trees in the desert was amazing.

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  6. Hi Glad you arrived safely home and what a wonderful trip u have had and fabulous photos and memories. I am sorry these days I do not have the same time to comment on all your posts due to recent events but I appreaciae you posts and your comments on mine.

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    1. Thank you Margaret, and I appreciate your sweet comment.

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  7. All your pictures and descriptions were so good I almost feel I was on holiday with you. Oh well, back to the laundry!

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    1. Thank you Valerie, my laundry is calling too. Down to earth with a bump as they say but happy to be home, sleeping in my own bed :)

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  8. Welcome home, Denise and Gregg, and it hardly seems so long ago that your travels started. It has been great to be along on this road trip and glad the weather cooperated for you as well. There's always the catching up to do as we all know. Looking forward to seeing more about this fun trip.

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    1. Thanks Beatrice, great to be home :) Anothet post in the works.

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  9. Same here! I have no sense of direction. My head decides "which is North," and sticks with the "feeling." -sigh- Which is no help, in navigating. lol.

    Gentle hugs,
    Luna Crone

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    1. Thank goodness for GPS then aye Luna? lol :)

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  10. I love that palm tree place and the chollas. what a wonderful trip

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    1. Thanks Sandra :) palm trees and chollas are a great combination.

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  11. Glad you made it home and that you had such a nice trip. The pictures are great, thank you for sharing.

    One of our experiences with the checkpoint coming into California, we were sitting there answering the typical questions when he asked "any animals" I said no and just as I did our dachshund barked at him, "no animals you say?" He asked, I said we don't think of her as an animal, he laughed and sent us on our way.

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    1. Thanks Jimmy, I appreciate your kind comments :) Smiling about your little dachshund. Our furry family are most definitely not just animals :)))

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  12. So pleased you arrived home safely and what a wonderful trip you've had sharing some fantastic photographs and making special memories.

    Dare I ask have you got the laundry done? LOL!

    Enjoy your weekend.

    All the best Jan

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    1. Thank you Jan and yes, we have just about caught up with the laundry, lol :) You enjoy your weekend and all the best too. Denise

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  13. We stayed at an RV Park in 29 Palms on our first RV trip after we retired. Love Joshua Tree NP and will never forget the feeling of not having to leave until we wanted to ... now that it wasn't a vacation, but our life! So it's very special place for us and I loved your take on the area. Beautiful pictures.

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    1. Thank you Sallie! It makes me happy you know Joshua Tree and 29 Palms :)

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  14. Great part of your western trip! Loved seeing the photos of some familiar country!

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    1. Thanks Marie, we really enjoyed this area :)

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  15. Joshua Tree is one of those places I would love to see for myself someday. Beautiful shots!

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    1. It's a place I love visiting. I will look forward to you get there one day. I will forward to your photos. Thanks William :)

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  16. Replies
    1. They are aren't they Ruby? My mother always had a little cactus garden, but I never truly appreciated them until my later years.

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