Thursday, July 16, 2009

Down in the Valley



Not wanting to brave the terrors again of Highway 243 back to Palm Springs, we continued south from Idyllwild to Highway 74...



...where the road crosses a long, beautiful valley at about 4,000 feet...



...passing what looked to be affluent horse ranches.



The alpine valleys gave way to desert mountains...



...and rock hills...



...where bighorn sheep were supposedly roaming.



As we neared the Coachella Valley, the land became increasingly forbidding and desolate...



...until we started seeing bits of country club golf courses peeking out from the backs of canyons.



The highway dipped down into Palm Desert, passing by the grotesquely wealthy Bighorn country club estates...



...and the temperatures, which had been in the 80's in the mountains, jumped to 117 degrees.



We were down in the valley again.

4 comments:

Immanuel Gilen said...

i have no conception of what anything beyond 100 degrees feels like. Do you feel the difference anymore between 100, 110 and 120? I just can't imagine more heat...

sfmike said...

Dear Immanuel: It gets pretty disgusting over 110 and you just do what you can to stay out of the sun. In fact, I haven't even ventured outside today and it's 4PM. The nights are pretty magical, however.

rootlesscosmo said...

There's a remote area about 30 miles East of Indio called Eagle Mountain. Kaiser Steel used to own an iron mine up there; it shut down when Kaiser closed its Fontana steel mill. I've always wanted to explore that area, probably in a four-wheel-drive vehicle carrying a large supply of drinking water. Some January, maybe--definitely not in July.

Greg said...

great pics (as always)!

Whenever I'm out there I feel like I'm on the Mars colony, post-terraforming or something. You can look up from wherever you are and there's all those rocky mountains and such. Kinda cool! But sure gets hot out there.