Photography . . . Travel . . .

Friday, December 16, 2016

Joshua Tree National Park and Wonder Valley (near Twentynine Palms)

We recently spent a week in Palm Springs, California, and while we were there we took a day trip up to the area around Twentynine Palms and Joshua Tree National Park.  

Back in the 1940's and 50's there were a number of 5-acre parcels in the desert sold by the Federal government under a small tract homestead program.  The program required that the homesteader put up a minimum improvement, which was generally in the form of a small one-room cabin.  The one my father had, a ways outside of Desert Hot Springs, was "improved" with a 14x20 one-room cabin, but it did have a two-seater outhouse.  We drove around the area east of Twentynine Palms known as Wonder Valley, looking at what is left of many of these little homesteads.  It will probably come as no surprise that many of the initial homesteaders didn't stay long.  There is not much out there, and the harsh climate doesn't help any.  We did come across the remnants of some sort of old mining facility just south of Highway 62.

On the north side of Hwy 62 we drove around Dale Dry Lake on Ironage Road, and admired the views of pretty much nothing.  This is the view looking more or less north.

Not much different looking south either.  Those hills in the distance are the Old Dale Mining District which is to the east of Joshua Tree National Park.

Later we took a little drive around part of Joshua Tree National Park.

We drove out to Keyes View to check out the view to the south.  That tallest mountain in the distance is Mt. San Jacinto, which rises pretty much straight up over 10,880 feet above Palm Springs.

It seemed like a good spot for a selfie.

Click here to see a few more images from Wonder Valley and from Joshua Tree National Park in early December 2016.

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San Diego, California, United States
About me . . . When I'm not working I like to be out exploring and photographing. I do this blog just for fun, and to be able to share these images with friends. I hope you enjoy viewing these images as much as I enjoyed creating them.

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Header image: Cibola National Wildlife Refuge, Cibola, Arizona. End image: Downtown San Diego, California skyline from Coronado Island. Profile picture: Craters of the Moon National Monument, Idaho, by Heather Baiamonte.