Desert in Bloom

Published: April 4th 2010
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It's this time of the year! The desert is blooming! I can't say that I love desert, but when air temperature is right and something is actually green we go east for a hike. South west desert is very picturesque with wonderfull colorfull rocks formation. This pictures are from two trips we took in March and are from neighborhood areas close to the Salton Sea. One is from Anza Borrego Park, second from the 5+ miles hiking trip to one of the canyons near Mecca called Painted and Ladders Canyons.
The first trip to Anza Borego was to see a "blooming desert" which is overstatement in my opinion, millions of people are driving sometimes for hours to see practicaly blooming weeds and occasionally a cactus. Yes it happens once a year but it is hardly a lush vegetation. For me, it gives more greenery to the background and one can not beat the comfortable temperature. It suppose to be a family trip which we took with our other polish friends so it supposed to be easy, except the hike up the steep hill, when we decided to take a shortcut.
The second trip was much more interesting. The trail is situated in Mecca Hills Wilderness, the famous San Andreas Fault passes right through giving a glimpse through of geological history while one walks through steep-walled canyons. It is a 5 mile round trip hike where one usually starts from the left side Ladder Canyon a narrow canyon with several ladders going up. It reaches a a ridge with a wonderfull 360 view of Mecca Hills and Salton Sea. Salton Sea is the biggest lake in California, and was created artificially when the irrigation canals from Colorado River were flooded a 100 years ago. Now it is replenished by agricultural runoff, and since the water evaporates fast it causes steady increse of salinity. Practically nothing lives in the lake but it gives a beautifull view in the middle of the desert. Afterwardes it desends into a Painted Canyon with much wider paths and many differt colored walls. Kids had a lot of fun climbing rocks and the ladders were the highlights of the trip.
Next weekend will go for overnight trip to Joshua Natioinal Park, the last visit to the dessert before it will get too hot to go there.

Additional photos below
Photos: 51, Displayed: 23


Me in one of the twisting spotsMe in one of the twisting spots
Me in one of the twisting spots

And under me San Andreas Fault, I remained calm.
Me and OcotilloMe and Ocotillo
Me and Ocotillo

This is my favorite desert plast

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