7. March 2010 05:12
I took another scouting trip to the south end of the Anza Borrego Desert to see how the wildflowers and cactus blooms were progressing. It looks like we have another couple weeks for a peak bloom in the southern areas. There are many cacti with buds that are ready to explode.
This beautiful Barrel Cactus near Indian Hill was getting a jump start on its neighbors.
We also noticed a few small Fishook Cacti with tiny rings of flowers.
Penstemon pseudospectabilis(?) nestled between the rocks.
Unfortunately on our search for wildflowers near Arroyo Seco del Diablo and Arroyo Tapiado we noticed a large amount of Sahara Mustard in areas t... [More]
19. February 2010 04:32
In the small desert town of Ocotillo, CA the winds may be changing.
Pattern Energy, a San Francisco based energy company is proposing to turn 15,000 acres of public lands bordering the Anza Borrego Desert State Park into a 561 megawatt wind farm with 240 wind turbines.
Unfortunately for the small town of Ocotillo and the Imperial Valley, little would be gained as the power would be funneled to San Diego over the infamous Sunrise Powerlink.
John Calaway, Pattern Energy director of wind development states that the area would benefit from 400 construction jobs during the two year construction period of the Ocotillo Express Wind Farm.
Let me ... [More]
8. February 2010 20:16
It looks to be a great year for wildflowers out in the Anza Borrego desert due to the record rains we had in January.
We are planning on heading out this coming Valentine's weekend to scout out some areas. From what I have been reading, late February into mid March will be the peak, so make your plans to head on out. This year I am extra excited since we finally picked up a decent camera. Hopefully you will be able to tell by the new pictures we upload.
I am hoping to report back Monday so check back. For now enjoy these pictures from our previous flower hunting trips.
Anza-Borrego Desert State Park has a wildflower hotline for Anza ... [More]
15. January 2010 06:50
Although the Sunrise Powerlink has been re-routed to avoid the Anza Borrego Desert State Park, the battle continues for many residents of San Diego's backcountry. One such community, Alpine is being faced with having 6 miles of 12 ' trenches dug along its' main artery to accomodate the 2 parallel 230KV lines. Representatives from SDG&E state that the "undergrounding" of the Alpine portion of the Sunrise Powerlink, will take two years to install; one year for the
conduits and another year to pull and
splice the massive cables.
According to San Diego County supervisor Dianne Jacob, Alpine will ... [More]
1. September 2009 05:00
While most people were trying to escape the record high temperatures by heading to the beach, I decided to head out to Anza Borrego for the day. This trip would be solo since my claims of a fun desert adventure fell on deaf ears. Mary simply wasn't buying it. She said something about triple digit temperatures and that was that. She was right, the weather had been over 110' for the past week out in Ocotillo but that failed to dissuade me.
I dropped down into Ocotillo around noon figuring if I was going to experience the desert in the summer why not do it at midday when temps would be peaking?
As expected, Ocotillo was a ghos... [More]
3. June 2009 03:28
Even though the Anza Borrego Desert State park has been spared from the destructive path of the Sunrise Powerlink ; the battle is far from over.
SDG&E's Southern route goes through portions of Cleveland National Forest as well as land under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management. Formerly untouched areas such as the Carrizo Gorge Wilderness Area will forever be marred by 150 foot steel towers.
Wilderness aside, what about the East County residents who live in the rural San Diego backcountry? It is estimated that the Sunrise Powerlink will affect 3000 east San Diego county residents.
This destructive impact ... [More]
29. May 2009 17:55
If the Governor has his way the Anza-Borrego Desert will be off limits due to state budget cuts.
Anza Borrego is on the chopping block along with 219 other parks in the California State Parks system. According to an article in the Union Tribune, the parks being targeted do not have enough visitors to offset the costs associated with keeping them open.
Governor Schwarzenegger's budget would cut $213 million from the state parks budget over the next two years.
So let me get this right, Californians who have had to trim back on their vacation budgets can no longer take a weekend mini-vacation to their local state park?
Please take a minute a... [More]
26. May 2009 01:07
In an effort to escape the Memorial Day beach crowds, Mary and I left Leucadia and pointed the LandCruiser east. Our destination was Combs Peak located in the northern end of Anza Borrego.
At 6193 ft or 1888 m Combs Peak has the distinction of being the highest mountain in the Anza Borrego Desert State Park as well as one of the highest, most remote peaks in San Diego County.
For reference here is a list of the top 10 mountain peaks in San Diego
Hot Springs Mountain
Mount Laguna-West Peak
20. April 2009 05:48
We left the coast on a sunny Sunday morning and pointed the LandCruiser east out to one of our favorite areas of Anza Borrego. A quick stop at Starbucks and Subway to fuel up and we were our way. This time we had a couple of Anza newbies, our friends Steve and Haeja.
Late April the temperatures begin to approach triple digits out in the Anza Borrego Desert so we knew this was one of our last trips of the season. Our plan was to hike from the East Fork of Carrizo Gorge out to the seldom visited Carrizo Palms. The palms are located in a remote location below the Carrizo Gorge Railway and are a bit difficult to get to.
Our hike began with a ... [More]
16. April 2009 19:57
I just caught this article in the San Diego Union Tribune giving Sempra a big pat on the back for expanding its' solar presence in the Nevada desert.
While this looks all warm, fuzzy and green on the surface we have to take a step back and look at the shortcomings of this approach.
Once again the Desert is being used as a sacrifice zone.
We will need more transmission lines to get this power to the population centers.
It maintains Sempra's control of energy production and distribution to the consumer.
Environmental issues aside, we as consumers should be asking our politicians, "Why can'... [More]