Travel More! Travel Longer!

Atop Mount San Jacinto, California

View of The Coachella Valley from Mt San Jacinto
Chuck Sat, 2015-09-05 07:00
Stunning vistas, breathtaking scenery, blah blah, yada yada… It seems inevitable that we will tire of laying our eyes on incredible natural beauty, or that we will at least run out of adjectives and superlatives and descriptive metaphors for all that the American west has to offer. It may indeed be that it’s getting harder, as this road trip progresses, to describe the beauty we’ve seen. But we’re certainly not tiring of seeing it. Somewhat ironically, but not at all surprisingly, the best way to see a valley is to get up and out of it. We noted this in our blog on Joshua Tree National Park...

The Romance and Sex Life of the Date

Chuck Wed, 2015-09-02 07:00
In the heart of California’s Coachella Valley, in the town of Indio, you’ll find a desert oasis of kitschy travel fun. Shields Date Garden is a working date farm, processor, retail outlet, and tourist attraction all in one. This place has been pleasing visitors since Floyd and Bess Shields came to the desert in 1924 to build a business growing these desert palm fruits. How we came to want to go to Shields Date Garden is worthy of a brief digression. “La Quinta, California. It’s in the Coachella Valley,” I explained to my buddy Michael as we related our summer road trip travel plans. “...

3 Don’t-Miss Sights in Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park
Chuck Sun, 2015-08-30 07:00
The north edge of the Coachella Valley is dominated by Joshua Tree National Park. Only a full-fledged national park since 1994, it has been preserved as a national monument since 1936. The park occupies a bit more than 1,200 square miles of California desert, making it slightly larger than the state of Rhode Island. Joshua Tree National Park gets its name from the Joshua trees that are native to the Mojave Desert and common across the landscape. These distinctive trees are also known as yucca palms, tree yuccas, and (to cover all bases) palm tree yuccas. Mid 19 th -century Mormon settlers...

The Mojave National Preserve

Chuck Thu, 2015-08-27 07:00
We could have gone all Interstate highway from Las Vegas to the Coachella Valley, but what would be the fun in that? Sometimes you just have to take the back roads. Being natives of the Gulf South, deserts are about as familiar to us as moonscapes. So naturally we cut through the Mojave National Preserve just to see what we could see. Here are a few of those sights. Mojave National Preserve Old Kelso Post Office Kelso Jail (not a pleasant thought, especially in August. It was used until 1985.) Lunch counter at the Kelso visitor's center (which used to be a railroad workhouse). Old Southern...

Palm Springs and the Coachella Valley

Chuck Tue, 2015-08-25 07:00
We’ve wanted to spend time in Southern California for quite some time. It’s one of the corners (literally) of the country that we’ve scarcely visited. So with an opportunity to spend 7 weeks in the Coachella Valley, the “headquarters” of which could be considered to be Palm Springs, we eagerly signed up. The Coachella Valley is a desert valley running about 45 miles from northwest to southeast. The northwest entrance to the valley is just an hour or so east of Los Angeles, and the southern end of the valley is marked by the Salton Sea, whose shores lie barely more than 20 miles from the...