Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Riverside Ca to Joshua Tree National Park

We've been busy lately.
After leaving Borrego Springs we headed over the mountains into the 
LA Basin to Rancho Jurupa County Park in Riverside, Ca  where we finally hooked up
with our friends from Switzerland who have arrived to spend the next
9 weeks traveling with us in their rented Class A Motorhome.

Our first order of business was to tour downtown Riverside

Riverside County Courthouse
 There is a heavy Spanish influence on the Architecture a result of
California's history of once being part of Mexico.

We toured the beautiful Mission Hotel - a must see in Riverside.

Downtown Riverside California
Rancho Jurupa County Park, in addition to large sites with green grass and full
hookups - has an 18 hole miniature golf course. 

We all embarked on a cut throat round of golf.

Minature Golf - Rancho Jurupa
At the campsite Isabella and Francesca are keeping the doodles well exercised. 

A hummingbird perched on this branch long enough for me to get a pix.

After 2 quick nights at Rancho Jurupa, we headed back east over the mountains back
into the desert to Palm Springs, California.

On the way there, Kate and I stopped at Redlands Truck Service for a safety inspection on
the bus which is needed for me to renew my annual registration.

It was a very thorough inspection and we passed with flying colors.
Surprisingly however - many states do not require a safety inspection and I wonder
how many people are operating heavy vehicles like ours that might not
be in the best shape.

Redlands Truck & RV
While in Palm Springs we celebrated a very very special birthday for
Michaela.   Lets just say it was her 29th.

We ordered a delicious Tiramisu Cake from a local gourmet bakery.

Marcel chose this caption on the cake because the girl at the bakery was having a hard
time spelling:  "Alles Gute zum Geburtstag zur besten Frau und zur Mamma"

The 8 of us went out Friday Night for a birthday celebration at a local restaurant
and had a wonderful meal.

On Sunday we took a trip up the Palm Springs Tramway.
The tram rises 8,000 vertical feet from the desert up onto the nearby
mountains.   Once at the top we were in the snow zone.

Palm Springs Tramway
Kate stayed at the RV park with the girls and went to the pool.
We took this self portrait at the top. 

There was a bit of haze in the air but still a million dollar view.
This is looking down into Palm Springs.   The airport is at center of the photo
and you can see some snow in lower left.

Monday we said goodby to Ron & Maxine (and buddy) who were headed home.

We had traveled with them for 6 weeks and as always, we were sad to part company
but parting on the trail comes with the joy of sharing the road.

The rest of us moved about an hour north to Joshua Tree National Park.

Climbing up to 4000' elevation, the temps were about 10˚ cooler than down in
Palm Springs.

Joshua Tree is one of the few places on earth that the Joshua Tree grows.
It is limited to a few sites in the Mojave Desert.

A relative of the Yucca Plant and well suited to the harsh environment of
the Mojave Desert, some trees have roots that travel over 35' underground.
Some trees are over 1,000 years old!

Joshua Tree NP Black Canyon CG  46 & 47
The early morning sun paints the bark of a tree while the moon hovers overhead. 

We are fortunate to be here during flowering of the Joshua Tree.
The tree does not flower every year as the conditions have to be just perfect.
Just the right amount of rain at the right time, and a hard freeze followed by a 
warm up are some of the requirements.

Throughout the park the Trees are sporting large clusters of flowers which
contain the seeds of a new generation.

A Gambrel Quail perches on the flower of a nearby tree.

Yesterday afternoon a dust devil came whipping thru the campsites.
It spun around wildly, whipping up dust while it slowly transited thru our area.
I ran into it to see what it felt like and came out with both ears filled with dust.
I did not however get transported to Oz.

I'm always impressed with the way the girls play together and how they create these intricate
little scenes with their toys.

Using the local materials they have made huts, corrals, campfires etc etc.
Their scene covers an area the size of a 4x8' sheet of plywood.

When my work day had ended, we went for a hike up one of the nearby
mountains.   A scenic 2 mile round trip.

We were rewarded with a 100 mile view from the top.

Isabella - always the Paparazzi - has Papas camara and a Go-Pro Camera on her hat.

A group shot on the trail.
Francesca now has the GoPro Camera.

The spring bloom has started.
Soon the Cactus will start blooming.
I think this is going to be a very good year for flowers as we travel the desert. 

We are here at Joshua Tree tonight and tomorrow night then we move to
Las Vegas on Thursday.

We will be staying at the Las Vegas Motorcoach Resort.
A beautiful resort which we stayed at last year while I had knee surgery.

I have to fly to NY on Thursday night at 11pm for business on Friday and will fly back to Vegas
on Friday night arriving back at 11pm.

11pm Thursday to 11pm Friday - it will be a 24hr workday.

See you in Vegas!


  1. What a lucky team those Swiss are, and the kids are even more lucky to be traveling with you. I bet the doodles love the kids and I bet Momma Kate spoils them all. How fun. Great blog post. Beautiful photos of happy people. Enjoy.
    Hayden, on anchor George Town Exumas.

  2. My kids to the same thing! They are so detailed with their "playing". I love it. As usual the pics are great. Glad you guys got to spend time with friends. Be safe!

  3. Thanks for sharing. I had no idea the roots were that big on a Joshua tree.


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