4th through the 7th of 2001 Mom & Gary traveled to the to the High
desert of the Southwest. There was no advance planning except that
Mom expressed an interest in seeing the spring wildflowers that she
remembered from her childhood in the Mohave Desert of California.
left san Jose and traveled south on US Highway 101 to California
State Highway 25 towards Hollister. From Hollister we followed Hwy
25 south along the valley formed by the San Andreas fault through
the cattle country of San Benito County through Tres Piños, past
Bolado Park, through Paicines and past
Pinnacles National Monument.
This area still has the look and feel of the old Spanish cattle
ranches and, in the last of the green glory of spring, was an
excellent start to a scenic trip.
California State Highway 198 we turned east across the hills to
Coalinga and then followed California State Highway 33 and Jayne
Road to Interstate 5. We stopped for some great burgers from the In
& Out at the Kettleman City exit on I-5.
trip down I-5 was as uneventful as the highway has been successfully
designed to provide until we came to the western crossing of the
Tehachapi Mountains where we returned to the green carpet of
California spring on the steep slopes mixed with Oak and Chaparral.
found Mom's flowers at Gorman along I-5 near the intersection of
California State Highway 138. The hills were painted by California
Poppy, Lupine and Buttercup. Our little disposable camera provides a
less than vivid record of the views but this is the record we will
have to rely upon.
I was there as well. Maybe it's good that the little camera does not
provide an accurate record after all.
pictures were taken just off I-5 in downtown Gorman. We then drove
down the Gorman Post Road to Hwy 138. There were spectacular flowers
on the hills all along this short section of the old road between
Gorman and Rosamond.
hacienda that we found along the Gorman Post Road was enjoying broad
sweep of color that Mom though could be attributed to God providing
inspiration to any artist who may aspire to the
next stop was the
Antelope Valley California Poppy Reserve established to protect
and perpetuate outstanding displays of native wildflowers,
particularly the California Poppy, Eschscholzia californica, the
spent the night in Mojave where Mom lived from 1935 until her father
passed away in 1944. We found Mom's old home and the surviving
buildings that she could remember such as the Community Church and
the school built by the WPA.
Motel 6 was comfortable but someone tried to open our door during
the night. The latch held the door.
dinner and breakfast at
16862 State Highway 14
Mojave, CA 93501-1200
are very popular for good reason. They have an extensive menu of
fast food fare along with some Mexican and Greek items. Service is
great, prices are reasonable and the portions are generous.
morning we visited Mom's father's grave and hit the road for
Red Rock Canyon.
Rock Canyon State Park was established as a state park in 1968, the
first state park in Kern County.
unique and colorful layers of white, pink, red, and brown cliffs
grace both east and west sides of Highway 14. These fluted folds are
the result of wind and rain eroding the softer materials beneath the
dark cap rocks, which were formed by a harder lava flow layer.
topping off gas tank at Olancha (where they advertise "fresh
jerky," a seeming oxymoron), on US Highway 395, we turned east
to Death Valley. Death Valley
National Park has more than 3.3 million acres of spectacular
desert scenery, interesting and rare desert wildlife, complex
geology, undisturbed wilderness, and sites of historical and
cultural interest. Bounded on the west by 11,049 foot Telescope Peak
and on the east by 5,475 foot Dante's View, Badwater is the lowest
point (-282 feet) in the western hemisphere.
following pictures were taken at Padre Point looking into the
Springs a small western-style resort located in the beautiful
Panamint Valley in Death Valley National Park. Marvelous views of
distant sand dunes and the soaring 11,000' Panamint Mountains
complete the setting for leisure dining and relaxation.
Located in Death Valley National Park
On Highway 190
48 miles east of Lone Pine
31 miles west of Stovepipe Wells
following pictures were taken looking out across the sand dunes near
picture was taken at Badwater in Death Valley, the lowest point on
land in the western hemisphere. The small white sign far up the
cliff, visible next to the label "Sea Level" on the picture, in fact
indicates the mean sea level.
we're looking the opposite direction, out across Badwater. We have
found the limitations of our disposable camera here and my photo
editing ability. I hope you can see the snow capped
Telescope Peak at
11,049 feet above sea level in the background. I'm looking up at
the sea level indicator on the cliff behind Mom.
then decided to head for the Grand Canyon. We drove out of Death
Valley through Shoshone to Pahrump, Nevada. We then drove through
Las Vegas to Hoover Dam
where we took the following pictures in the failing light.
a comfortable night at the Howard Johnson's in
the site of the last stoplight on old
US Highway 66; we drove to
the south rim of Grand Canyon
National Park. I was a great day with a clear sky but our
disposable camera, a new one that offered a panorama setting, was
not the right tool in our hands. My limited photo editing capability
has enhanced some of the scenery.
first three pictures were taken near the
El Tovar Hotel
and the Hopi House.
two pictures here were taken just east of Mather Point at a scenic
series here is from Grandview Point.
last pictures of the Grand canyon were taken at Desertview.
next views are of the Little Colorado River Canyon where we shopped
at the Navajo jewelry shops.
Moqui Cave, just north of Kanab Utah is a personal museum
collected by the Chamberlain family from the travels around the
world and around the area. The museum was closed on Sunday evening
when we were there but we considered the facade a good subject for a
came to eastern Zion
National Park, the white rock area, just before sundown and
snapped these last pictures.