Anza Borrego Desert State Park (ABDSP)

Monday, January 15th, 2007

I never wrote that from Gila Bend, AZ, to the Park was very eventful, as I got lost twice and learned how to read a map, mainly to understand a divided freeway versus just a four lane road with stop signs at every corner! But the sign was there… 86 North… I still cannot figure it out and I am not going to try. I end up in Ocotillo instead of Brawley, stopped at this little antique store where the lady behind the counter without a word… pulled out a pre-printed map!!!… For people like you she said with a smile! She had a big stack of them, I was not going to be the last one…

I had to backtrack, this time on 8 and take the real 86 north, Imperial Highway… which should be mark the real 86 and not the next exit! I am writing this for the few that know the area and are going to start arguing with me!!! smilie here… Of course there are better ways to get here, but I was warned about the black ice and even some snow in the upper elevations. At least I saw the real action of two wheelers and four wheelers in a desert setting… seems like loud pipes have moved right along from two wheelers to four wheelers… quads… dune buggies, I never thought I would again 30 years later use that word!

We finally made it… as I look around not quite understanding where I am. Why? Because I am suppose to be in a Park, not a town… I mean I knew that the city of Borrego Springs is in the Park, somehow I got turned around… something happened to my logical thinking, it took me about 24 hrs and a map to figure things out… and I have! So relax… everything is going to be okay… Sometimes I am slow, lets face it, it is an unusual setting!

A great sight at the gas station… I had to seek some fuel somewhere else…
We had a slow start today, I will just say it once… because it was freezing… did I mention it was down to 19 last night? But we get going and the Visitor Center is our first stop… well, second actually, as between yesterday afternoon and this morning I have been looking for some friends of mine… which I have never met… that ride the same rig combination as mine… but with no avail… they have a young daughter that rides in the car and the weather must have changed their plan. Too bad…

The Visitor Center has to be one of the nicest ones I have been in!… if you can imagine it… even the doors are automatic… great for the summer time I was told as I thought it was a bit over the top… Very knowledgeable volunteers, a map and we are on our way. I will go back tomorrow… now that I have found my bearings I specifically know what I need to ask and need to buy a sticker!… Ah!… stickers… kids will be kids… right?

I decided to see Blair Valley today, mellow and least difficult off roads leading to Marshal South, Morteros and the Pictograph… it is a start! Back to the circle in town and on to S3, a beautiful twisty black top, left on S2 and another left into Blair Valley a few miles down. Very cool, all is marked with brown signs, there is barely a chance to get lost, specially when I can also rely on the bread crumb trails of my GPS…

Sand… a lot of sand… and the rear TKC tire was performing like a dream… fun… fun… fun! Most curves are banked sand, great to get the bike up and the third wheel just following in the center of the road… I was not going to write this, but it is in my thoughts and so I will… I would have dropped the bike many times over if I would have been on two wheels… that is my reality. We came across some campers in two tents… 2 couples… young kids… I don’t think they are there tonight!… they were seating in their car bundled up with the engine running and most likely… the heater on full blast! Hundreds of areas to camp… anywhere… and I cannot wait for the weather to warm up to also be there in the wilderness… away from it all… one week here, will have to decide what to do next very soon.

We arrive at the end of the road where a few other cars are parked, a nice walk with Spirit, we are really trying… specially after driving for a couple days as we did… Spirit was so happy this morning… he is getting in a somber pattern when we move, but once we arrive and set up… he is one happy dog, his tail wagging, sniffing hard to the point of coughing… and loves to ride… we are both so lucky to have each other.

We have climbed about 2000 feet and we can see ahead of us Whale Peak at 5200 feet… it is quiet… dead silence… I stopped once to listen to the silence… Spirit stopped also… his ears up and immobile like a statue for a long long time… I think he was dumfounded by it!… there was nothing to hear, well, I am sure he heard some things I could not, but it was the strangest thing of him just not moving…

500 miles + of trails!… some more difficult than others… I understand why on this holiday weekend I must have seen hundreds of trucks loaded with dirt bikes going up and down the roads.

No traffic however in Blair Valley… probably too easy of a road.

As a sidenote… I need to thank “Jkam”, you know who you are… for stirring me right in my months of preparations regarding my home base. I was going to do this Journey with a tent, which I do have, which I will most likely revert to in the summer, but Jkam insisted that I would use this Bronco with the popup camper… without it… honestly, I would have not lasted through this weather, and lets face it, the extra comfort is not bad at all! I have just hang on each side above the windows 4 little plastic milk crates with some mirror hooks… I have now a whole counter empty for so much more room for cooking… this is awesome… 6 ½’ x 6 ½’ of standing space… this is home!!!… on wheels… Thanks!

More tomorrow…

Be well… stay warm…

Ara and Spirit

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One Response to “Anza Borrego Desert State Park (ABDSP)”

  1. chris renner Says:

    Hey, I saw you yesterday in Borrego Springs at the small convenience store. I was on a V Strom riding with a Buell Uly. I like the look of your sidecar setup and am seriously considering purchasing a Ural to do the same type of riding. Have a good day.

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