Southern California

Summer-like weather in mid-December is one feature of the desert in southern California that we don’t find in the deserts of northern New Mexico. It was that promise of warm temperatures that drew us to Indio, California, for a week of hiking and sightseeing. And on our hikes we enjoyed seeing other features that we don’t find in New Mexico’s deserts. For example, Joshua Trees, which aren’t trees at all, but are members of the Agave family.

The stalk in the foreground is a young Joshua tree before it branches.

And then there are the California Fan Palm Trees. So strange to be hiking in barren desert terrain and then come upon an oasis of palm trees.

Some other interesting features:

Gneiss rock formations with distinctive black and white bands are the oldest rocks in Joshua Tree Park.
Cactii don’t look their best in winter. Beavertail is a variety we usually don’t see.
Teddy bear cholla
Seed pod of wild cucumber

And then there are beautiful views from hiking trails:

Look closely to see Lee on top of the hill in the distance.

Our last day in the area we temporarily left the desert and rode the Palm Springs Tram up towards Mount San Jacinto to do some hiking in the mountains.

Riding up the tram.
Looking towards Palm Springs from top of tram.
Hiking a trail in Mt. San Jacinto State Park at the top of the tramway.

White fir tree.

Riding back down to the desert.

Author: bjregan

Enjoying retirement activities. Main goals for retirement are to stay spiritually, physically, mentally and emotionally healthy.

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