Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Great trip to Joshua Tree National Park

This past weekend family and friends took a trip to JTNP for the weekend. Who knew the weather would be cooler in the desert than the beach?  83 degrees in the desert and 100 here at the beach in So Cal.

We boondocked in the overflow camping area just outside the entrance to the park cloest to the I10 and Cottonwood campground.  This area is free and easy to get in and out of, and only four miles from the park.  I must have seen 75 camping spaces with decent room in between.  Just turn on Cottonwood road from I10 and head northeast; in about a mile you will see a dirt road that goes in both directions. Turn either way and you have a vast desert to camp for free for a 14 day stay limit, though I saw no official checking the sites over the weekend.  Just find an open fire pit and set up camp.

There is a really convenient spot for stopping for the night just off I10 to the west.  Looks a little trashy but will do for a quick overnight or to rest up.  The coordinates for this spot are 33.65731 -115.80208


Further down the road is Box Canyon with 15 miles of nice camping areas.  Though the sand might keep you from some of them.

Then on to a great find.  The General Patton Museum.  Not only a nice visit back into our American heritage but FREE CAMPING!  Just past the musuem you will see a sign "Free Dry Camping" - follow the directions to the next sign about 250 feet and see the second sign.  Once there you will find 25 dry camping sites for most size rigs, though I would do a walk through if you have a very large rig.  There is a turn around at the end of the dirt road.


This is a sample site with a fire ring in the rear.


Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Mojave National Preserve - Hole in the Wall Area

This first site is on the way to hole in the wall visitor center on Black Canyon Road.

This is a large area, but will need to be walked before you go all the way in, to make sure there is space for you rig. I have seen large class As there. Also, camp up next to a rock outcropping to break any wind from the south.



These next two sites are up the road a few miles and would be good for smaller rigs due to the space available to turn around.  35.024341, -115.383630 

These sites are across the road from each other, so it would be nice to camp with family or friends.


 


The last site is right behind the Rigs trail hike and the hole in the wall visitor center.


For all these sites, water/trash and dump station are near by at the Hole in the Wall campground just up the road..

Enjoy these boondocking sites.


Monday, January 26, 2015

Mojave Trip report

After boondocking for the night near Joshua Tree (on the dry lake bed) we headed off to Mojave National Preserve. I love the solitude of the park, so few cars and people. We camped near Kelso Dunes where we have camped many times before. Such a great view at dusk.

The next morning we headed off to see the Lava Tube and document some sites off of Akin Mine road. These are fine sites but since they are close to the road and have lots of traffic going by on the way to the Lava Tube, I would not camp there for more than a night.


Just a couple of picture of the lava tube. A must see if near by.

Since diesel is so cheap right now ($2.99 a gal) I decided to head to Baker to fuel up and get gas for the generator.

Sunday we woke up and headed to the "Hole in the Wall" area which is kinda far from where we camped, but again I wanted to look for more boondocking sites and get info from the ranger. I did find some great places and will need to write them up over the next few days.


If you head to this area you will need to do the "Rings Trail." It is such fun. There is also a great boondocking site located just off the trail that seems perfect. Trash/water and dump are just around the corner at the campground, and if you needed a restroom you can just take the short walk to the rings, climb up, then return to camp.

After the Hole in the wall visit we decided to take a 4x4 trip across the mountain back to camp. This was 11 miles moderate 4x4ing and we had a great time.


There were so many hill climbs that made the route fun.  Most were on the Keslo Dunes side if you want to hit a few of them. As with all long weekend trips it had to end and now we're back to work until President's Day, when we head out to El Mirage dry lake bed. I hope it's open so I can tear off across it! :-)

Until next time!
Bill