It is an amazing country we live in and each time I drive through any area of the desert southwest it never ceases to amaze me. Growing up far far away from the deserts I always had this idea of barren, flat, dry and ugly. While there are some areas that do fit this picture there is way more beauty and life here than ever imagined.
We have primarily taken backroads all the way down from Moab to where we find ourselves today, in San Clemente, California. We left Moab a week and a half ago, Wednesday evening and immediately hit a huge windstorm head on. So after a couple hours of fighting the fierce winds we decided to set up an early camp on a red dirt road just to the west of Capitol Reef National Park.
The next morning we woke to snow covered mountains all around and though we were both ready for some hot weather after our winter in Wyoming, this really was a blessing. The white blanket of snow against the high red desert in spring bloom made for a gorgeous drive through south west Utah that day.
We stopped that afternoon for a run outside of Zion at a place called Gooseberry Mesa, (which made us really miss our mountain bikes) before continuing on to camp down a dirt road a little past St. George, UT.
The next morning we headed in to Vegas to finish off some chores before making our way out to Red Rocks for a few days. This included a trip to a RV store where we really came to learn the extent of this RV’er sect, to which we really don’t belong.
Wade and Natasha, our good friends from Jackson joined us in that evening in Red Rocks for a few good days of climbing. However in typical Red Rock vacation fashion we spent our first day in a cold rain storm. It is truly amazing how bone chilling cold the desert can be!
Luckily it warmed up for us and we got a couple great days of sport climbing and even randomly ran in to our good friend, Ben, from Moab.
We left Red Rocks deciding to take backroads through the Mohave desert to Joshua Tree National Park. We stopped and set up camp with Wade and Natasha just a little way in to the reserve. After several nights camping in the pay campground around Red Rocks, the wide open spaces with no one else around was welcome, and with a little influence from Mr. Jim Beam a desert dance party ensued.
Sleeping in the next morning , making a huge breakfast and hanging out for a bit was a great start to our rest day. And if there is one thing the four of us do well together it is eating.