At the cave tour in Carlsbad Caverns we met a young couple on a similar trip as us, only headed the opposite direction. On their recommendation we decided to take surfing lessons in San Diego and headed there from Joshua Tree. Our first evening there we took a night-time walk on Mission Bay path to see the Pacific Read More →

Second to the Joshua Tree itself, the fascinating sculptures and gravity-defying piles of rocks are one of most prominent features of the landscape in Joshua Tree National Park. The land looks as if a giant moved rocks into piles, leaving vast swaths of land boulder-free with towering stacks of stones scattered about, many sculpted into artistic forms. Read More →

Many people have recommended Joshua Tree National Park to visit, so we drove here from Flagstaff. The 340 mile drive was the longest we have driven in a day in months. It was tiring but we made it to nearest campground just as the rangers were closing up. By this point in our trip we Read More →

Flagstaff has a walkable downtown area full of restaurants, brew pubs and independent stores. Just before picking up Patricia at the train station at the center of this area we stopped by a speciality beer store to pick out some treats. As we drove into the beer store parking lot, we noticed a bike store Read More →

After backpacking to the river and back, we stayed at Mather Campground in the park a little longer to regroup and see the last few sights we had yet to see. An entire village resides in the park, complete with grocery store and a branch of the state library, so we didn’t need to leave Read More →

The word Colorado is derived form the Spanish word for “reddish”, and was applied to the river that ran red-brown as it carried loads of sediment from eroding canyons along its route. Since the Glen Canyon Dam was erected to form Lake Powell, the river rarely runs its natural reddish-brown color and is usually clear Read More →

Nearly two billion years of Earth’s history are contained in the layers of rocks in the Grand Canyon. Gazing down into this vast chasm I had occasion to ponder the timescale of the canyon and of the planet. To better understand that timescale, to understand the changes that are recorded in those rocks dating back Read More →

A friend described Sedona, Arizona to me as a place with red rocks and a “new agey” culture. And that is exactly what we found, from Red Rock State Park to the several “Crystal Vortex” shops in the tourist area. We spent  an afternoon hiking at Red Rock State Park before camping at Dead Horse Read More →

From the Petrified Forest National Park, we headed into Flagstaff for errand day, after which we planned to camp in Sedona. We arrived at Red Rock State Park only to learn that camping isn’t allowed there! We spent a couple hours walking on the trails at that park before heading off to nearby Cottonwood where Read More →