Tuesday, January 23, 2018


Geni and I decided to visit Death Valley National Park last week. It was close enough, a little over 300 miles from us in Parker Az. Boy are we glad we did, what a incredible Nation Park! The Nation Park service started a passport club a few years ago. You purchase a passport booklet and at each park you get it stamped with there official emblem and stamp with date and time. Well of course Geni now wants to visit all the parks to get her book stamped (What a marking concept from the Park service!). We have been to most of the National Parks thru out our lives but now we must visit them again.
Death Valley’s outstanding natural beauty and scientific importance were first brought to the attention of the National Park Service in the late 20’s. With the support of Stephen T. Mather, Director of the National Park Service, Death Valley’s national significance was recognized, and it was proclaimed a national monument by President Hoover on February 11, 1933. With the passage of the Desert Protection Act of October 31, 1994, Death Valley grew by 1,200,000 acres and was designated a national park. Today Death Valley National Park is made up of 3,336,000 acres and contains more than 3,000,000 acres of wilderness. It is the HOTEST,DRIEST,LOWEST ELAVATION NATION PARK.
LINK: https://www.nps.gov/deva/index.htm

Train Depot

Rhyolite is one of a few old gold mining ghost towns still intact inside Death Valley. At one time this town had a population of 8000 people with 50 salons!
LINK: http://www.americansouthwest.net/california/death_valley/rhyolite-ghost-town.html


Bottle House made of old beer bottles

School house

Borax or White Gold as it was called, mining started in the late 1880's in Death Valley. This is where the 20 mule team started, as it hauled the borax mined to the mill.
LINK: https://www.legendsofamerica.com/ca-boraxmining/
original mill that was used in the 1880's
 Geni and I decided to hike a beautiful slot caynon called Mosaic. A 4 mile hike with a 1000 foot elevation gain! 
LINK: https://www.nps.gov/deva/planyourvisit/mosaic-canyon.htm

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK - A truley unique Desert

Geni and I got a late start Monday and headed to Joshua Tree National Park. What a beautiful morning to travel, 70's and Sunny but just about everyday is 70's and sunny! Joshua Tree National park lies 123 miles south of us here on the Parker strip, we got there a little late 12;30 and really did not have enough time to fully experience this outstanding National park that lies half in the Sonoran desert and the Mojave desert.  It was 123 miles of driving in complete desert, in the middle of NOWHERE! I plan to come back at a later time to camp and further explore this park. We spoke with the ranger and she told us that visits to this park are at a all time high, with over 3 million visitors last year, so much in so that they had to open the gates last summer and told people to just drive thru because there was nowhere to park!

LINK TO PARK: https://www.desertusa.com/jtree/jtmain.html


Joshua Trees fill the desert landscape
Geni and I also toured the Desert Queen Ranch inside the Park. What a story that is, Bill Keys the owner of this ranch lived there from 1917 to his death in 1969! He raised a family and mined the area till his death. If I could do 10% of the accomplishments of Bill Keys I would be a happy man! Please read his story here: https://www.desertusa.com/desert-people/bill-keys.html
Desert Queen Ranch

He owned a mine and also processed the gold from it

He was a pack rat also

Wind mill that supplied water to ranch

Joshua Tree is a rock climbers paradise

We did have time to take a one mile loop hike in Hidden Canyon


Monday, January 1, 2018

Happy NEW Year ! - FUN IN THE SUN - Desert bar - London Bridge

 Happy New Year Y'all ! Its been a really amazing year for Geni and I, we have been blessed and enjoying our retirement. We have traveled thousands of miles and seen beautiful areas of our country. We have worked in the oldest National Park the whole summer. We have met amazing new people and life long friends! My good friend Clark told me that this life style is really about the people you meet as you travel around this beautiful country of ours! Thanks Clark you are so right!

  Geni and I have settled in to our winter home along the Colorado river in Parker Arizona. The weather has been awesome to say the least, no rain since we got here in early December, days in the 70's and sunny!
We have been slowly exploring the area and one very interesting place we visited was the desert bar, of course it is in the middle of the barren desert landscape! It is a few miles north of Parker off a old mining road. The drive back to it consist of a 12 mile dirt road that is border line four wheel drive! With many side roads for jeeps and ATV's, this area is loaded with off road opportunities you can quickly become lost in the middle of nowhere.

LINK: http://www.thedesertbar.com/

The London Bridge lies in the resort town of Lake Havasu Arizona. This is the actual bridge built over the Thames River in London England in 1825 and moved here stone by stone in 1971. Robert P. McCulloch, Founder of McCulloch chain saws and founder of Lake Havasu City, AZ, submitted the winning bid for $2,460,000 in 1968. McCulloch spent another $7million to move the London Bridge to Lake Havasu City which took a total of three years to complete.

LINK: http://www.havasuchamber.com/our-community/london_bridge_history.aspx

The Church at the Desert Bar
Old Piano in Desert Bar
Covered Bridge entrance into Desert Bar
Arizona Sunset
Old Vehicles are all around 
Jeep convoy at sunset 
Fountain at London Bridge
Original oil Painting depicting London Bridge in 1825
Distance bridge traveled on ship to Lake Havasu
English Phone booth
original brass plaque  
Cowboy bar in Lake Havasu
Postcard photo of bridge

Happy New Year ! Geni and I wish Y'all a Safe and Blessed 2018