This Saturday, I will be leading a Joshua Tree 4WD run which will have us out from 9 a.m. until about sunset. Highlights will include;
- The historic Berdoo Canyon Road which at one time housed Berdoo Camp - a conglomerate of buildings including; dormitories, a mess hall, and even a town store and 35 bed hospital. Berdoo Camp - N33deg.50.06' W116deg.08.74'
- The Little San Bernardino Mountains tunnel which lies directly under Berdoo Camp which lies 2,042 underground - part of the California aqueduct project.
- The picturesque Pleasant Valley - providing views of the nearby Salton Sea to the south.
- Views of the Joshua Tree - the largest of the yuccas, and member of the lily family which range in height from 15 to 40 feet and live between 100 to 300 years, which were named by early Mormon visitors to California.
- Views of the Ocotillo (or 'Coach-whip'). In fact, Native Americans ate Ocotillo flowers like sweet candy back in the day.
- Mission Well in the Pinto Basin (along Old Dale Road) where Native Americans found food sources along what was once a shallow lake, but now houses a helicopter landing pad.
- Former California mining sites along Old Dale Road.
- Berdoo Canyon Trail ascending from an elevation of 900 to 4,400 ft. elevation as we enter Pleasant Valley within the National Park. We will continue onward from the opposite end of the park out to Highway 62 via Old Dale Road and Gold Crown Road.
Beginning along Dillon Road in the reknown desert festival town of Coachella, CA - we will drive our Jeeps, pickup trucks and SUVs up Dillon Road - a road set up in the early 1930s to access work sites along the California aqueduct project (which delivers water from Parker Dam in Arizona to Los Angeles, CA).
We will arrive at Dillon Road where we will air our tires down, disconnect our Jeep anti--swaybars, and prepare for a day of mild four wheeling and sight seeing under projected sunny skies, but cool temperatures.
As we complete the one-way Geology Tour Road, we will stop for lunch (at approx. 11:30 - 12:30) near the impressive Squaw Tank - a Native American campsite filled with Monzogranite boulders containing deep pockets used for grinding seeds - perfect for setting up for our lunch!
Next, we will drive across the park to Pinto Basin Road (also known as El Dorado Mine Road), 6 miles north of Cottonwood Campground, where we will drive up Old Dale Road where it will continue to Gold Crown Road where it intersects with Highway 62. But, before reaching pavement, we will take a fun detour, and play on a small sand dune and maybe cross an optional mud hole.
We will utilize CB Channel 22 along I-10, up to the meeting place.
HAM operators will be on this run - one of whom uses the Call Sign: KJ6KHK and can be accessed using 146.46 MHz Simplex.
Please make sure that your CB radio is in good operating condition prior to this run.
Be sure to carry $15 in the event that our group gets a visit from the Rangers, and require us to drive to one of the kiosks and purchase a park pass.
**Please do not bring any alcoholic drinks on this run. We will need to keep a fast pace due to the size of this group, and factoring whether or not drivers and/or passengers are no longer 'buzzed' will only slow us down. NYE was so yesterday.
Afternoon temps should peak into the upper 50s. Please bring a jacket and dress warm since our noon-time lunch stop will be above 4,000 ft. elevation.
There will be no gasoline available after we leave the Love's parking lot. Check http://www.californiagasprices.com
[Coachella, CA] for the lowest prices near our starting place.
Lunch and Dinner:
Please be sure to bring plenty of food and water for your day on the trail. We will begin lunch at approximately 11:30 a.m. and be ready to drive at 12:30 p.m. Our plan will be to arrive on pavement before 5 p.m. so that our tires will be aired up and anti swaybars reconnected with sunlight. Meet us for dinner at Santana's Mexican Food (Fresh MXN) - www.yvsantanasmexicanfood.com/
Their meals are more than McDonalds, but less than Denny's. It's not exactly the same quality as Fresh MXN in San Diego, but close enough for the price.
73680 Sun Valley Drive Twentynine Palms, CA 92277