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Wandering With the Watsons

California's largest desert park

California’s largest desert park

Yesterday Kelly and I arrived to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, our destination for a few days until we continue the crawl back towards Half Moon Bay.  We continue to dry camp, this time alongside fellow Airstreamers – Tim, Amanda, and Phineas … aka WatsonsWander.  They arrived a few days before us and scouted out a very nice spot – spacious, with only a few other RV’s scattered across a vast landscape.  The site is California’s larger desert park – exceeding 900 acres.  Generous with the rules, there is no time limit to stay, and at free, the price is definitely right.

Basically, it is perfect.

Our mobile homes, just down the path

Our mobile homes, just down the path

Our Airstream homes down this path

A closer look at the picture above

Tim and Amanda joined Kelly and me last night for dinner and great conversation.  This afternoon, the four us (plus Lilly & Phineas) ventured to the Calcite Mine Trail, a remote area about 10 east of our campsite.  The trail is pretty cool – a diverse  network of slot canyons easily traveled, less some spots requiring a bit of bouldering/scrambling.  There is also an abandoned access road which, as evidenced by the number of Jeeps we saw, is now a popular 4×4 off-roading destination.

Approaching the trails - Lilly and Phineas leading the way

Approaching the trails – Lilly and Phineas leading the way

This area is prone to flash flooding, our trail today included.  Over what I can only assume to be hundreds, if not thousands of years, the rushing water flows have carved an Alice in Wonderland like maze through these slots, which are significantly taller than they are wide.  I’ve never seen anything like them before.

Slots

Slots

More slots

More slots

After a while we ascended the canyon in search of the mining remnants, but never did find the site.  However, the views from high above were fabulous.

The climb starts with some scrambling

The climb starts with some scrambling

Up, up, up

Up, up, up

Cactus resting neat the top

Cactus perched near the top

Eventually, we completed the loop satisfied with the hike, but a bit bummed we missed out on the mining remains.

On the way home, Lilly enjoyed a post-hike treat in the car.

Enjoying a post hike treat

Enjoying a post hike treat

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