Thursday, June 12, 2008

Mojave Desert

The only thing wrong with going to Sequoia National Park is – there is no good way out of there if you are going east. You either have to go way north and or way south before you can go east.

We went south, back through the San Joaquin Valley and at Bakersfield we turned east. We have been going west for so long it is hard to get my mind wrapped around east as a direction.

When we left Three Rivers our intent was to go to Las Vegas. But, seeing as we were going to be close to Death Valley National Park we turned north-east and headed to Pahrump, Nevada.

Pahrump – what a name. Who would name a town, Pahrump.
Anyway, this is not about Pahrump.

Our drive took us through the western most part of the Mojave Desert. As I have learned, the Mojave Desert is massive. It encompasses large areas of California, Nevada and Arizona.
Our northeast turn happened at Barstow, CA. This route took us through Baker, CA and Baker is home to one of the most unique tourist attractions in the Mojave – the World's largest Thermometer – which is 135 feet high. As we passed through it indicated a temp of 90 degrees. However, it only registers in 10 degree increments.

The road did not get very interesting until we turned north at Baker. I'm not even sure that 'interesting' is the right word. It was mostly long straight roads, and I do mean long and straight, with distant vistas of mountains.
As we got closer to the mountains some of them were pretty spectacular. The colors and textures of the mountains were fantastic.

End of day – Pahrump. Went to Terrible's Casino where Shelley won $90. This is a nice offset to her last casino outing where she lost $40 (failed to blog about that didn't she).

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