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2019-03-04  
2019-03-03  
2019-03-02  
2014-06-23  
Anza Borrego DSP 2019, CA
mini location map2019-03-03
41 by photographer avatarRedRoxx44
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Anza Borrego DSP 2019, CA 
Anza Borrego DSP 2019, CA
 
Hiking avatar Mar 03 2019
RedRoxx44
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Sometimes you just have to go home. Rather than Death Valley I chose to come here, where many years ago started my love for harsh desert environs. The Sonoran desert is lush compared to this place. With the rain, the flowers and the stormy skies it has a special attraction. I came in the side near the Salton sea, did some wildflower shooting then hiked some slots and narrows off the Calcite mine road, which is not bad at first then gets there. No one on the road with me. Did walk past a ball of bees under a ledge. Fortunately they were not interested, probably just a resting spot for their queen. After that car camped in Palo Verde wash area with more flowers. Nice night and again, no one around.

Madness on the roadway in the flower areas. I drove a sandy road out and was able to hike alone with the wildflower spread for a while. Went out to Coyote canyon and more madness of hoards of people but once more driving on a bit where people were afraid of the sandy conditions was able to do some solo photography.

Headed south after stopping at park headquarters. Stopped at an area of former Native American occupancy and prowled around finding over 50 slicks and or metates'. Located another car camp. Next day up Whale Peak, an old favorite, it had been a really long time. I didn't carry a map or anything. The route I remember has morphed into a full on trail, and tons of cairns' some of which I removed. The summit is just the best, lots of flat places for camping and easy to find peak register and peak markers on two tall boulders.

Once down the weather was starting to look interesting, another car camp and reading. I needed a filler hike, I didn't want to do Sombrero peak in bad weather. A canyon I had not been in looked interesting and not hard. Very nice geology and some easy dry falls. Lots of wind which knocked me down once when I was a little off on my footing. I then drove up June wash a ways for more flower photography between wind gusts.

Next day I decided the skies while blustery looked ok for Sombrero. It's a short hike but it is pretty much straight up through boulders and cactii and no trail. I have a new category --- EFS ( Extremely Fn Steep) SFS ( Sorta Fn Steep) and ALFS ( A little Fn Steep). The initial ascent was EFS, you could not stand up straight you'd fall backwards, so be prepared to kiss the nice rock or flora. Once at the first ridgeline it lets up a little, then you contour over to the next big push, and have to decide the right or left on the big boulder piles. There is never any straight up climbing except on the summit block and then if you like stemming on large rocks.
False summit then on up, and here I did find footprints. Once on top like Whale you have to walk a bit to the true summit. Views were really incredible with all the clouds and light variations. I looked for the summit marker in vain. Register was so tight in the can I said forget it. Couldn't get it out.

Down was fun sliding in the decomp granite as long as no cholla or agave in the fall line. The elevation gain is about 2K in 1.5 miles or less.

I car camped in the Indian Gorge area, again a favorite. I had time to kill so located the end of another old Indian trail in the area announced by plenty of pot shards and a subtle path through the rocks. Also the other fork of the valley had flowers to roam around in too.

Then I had another place to go. One that is outside the park but very special and I think I shall write about that one separately. It had it's own weird magic.

Photos will be much later. Too much laundry and clean up to do. And there are too many photos. Such a first world problem.
A beautiful trip and one that reminded me why I love this place so much.
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