Wind and rain were forecast for the high desert elevations so I slowly worked my way south through the Mojave Desert by way of Tehachapi Pass and into the hotter Colorado Desert. The scent of creosote bush carried on the damp air and ocotillo, yucca and palo verde struggled along in the deep arroyos. The agricultural density of the Coachella Valley in the form of citrus, palm and grape is due solely to irrigation and the industrious efforts of many laborers. The divide is stark between the green and verdant valley and the land east of the irrigation canal supplied mostly by the Colorado River. Near Mecca, a shortcut slices up a Box Canyon toward Joshua Tree N.P. passing through BLM and BIA land. It is a rugged and dry terrain with intricate slot canyons and sandy washes begging for an afternoon of exploration. Having found a haven of free camping, exploration and access to nearby Mercado and Pananderia, I was set for a week. The weather grew warmer with each passing day until I was shirtless in the sun contemplating my water supply. After a cold ride down from Washington and some chilly and windy mornings working down to here, I had finally met the warmth in winter I had been searching for.
In May 2014 I quit my job to ride a Honda Ruckus over 59'000 mi and counting. Wild camping most nights and cooking most of my own meals, I keep the costs low and the landscape changing.