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Future Trips

Here we list trips scheduled by the Desert Explorers for the near and distant future. Also listed are some trips that are organized and led by our members but which do not require membership in the Mojave River Valley Museum (MRVM) and are, therefore, not MRVM-sponsored Desert Explorer trips.

Some trips, such as those involving stays at private residences or visits to obscure rock art sites, are posted only in the Desert Explorers' Newsletter. Conversely, some impromptu trips will be posted here and not in the Newsletter.

All trip participants will be required to sign our waiver.

Scheduled Desert Explorer Trips

Trip descriptions are usually published in the newsletter at least one month before they are posted on this website.

All Desert Explorers trips require a four-wheel drive vehicle and a working CB unless otherwise specified by the trip leader.

We welcome newcomers, but IF THIS WILL BE YOUR FIRST TRIP, please talk with the trip leader about your vehicle, camping gear, and off-highway driving experience; you won't have a good time if you get stuck, cold, wet, or hungry! Also, please read the "fine print," which describes the rules we follow on our trips.

We now have a satellite telephone for use where conventional telephone or cell-phone service is not available. See the Satellite Telephone Policy. For each trip, the decision to bring the satellite telephone, and if it to be used only for emergencies, is made by the trip leader. Talk with the trip leader if the use of the satellite telephone is important to you.


Desert Explorers Annual Rendezvous - Rondy!

2018 Annual DE Rendezvous

Fri-Sun, April 6-8, 2018

We’ll have inbound and outbound trips, local trips Saturday and Sunday, great food and great people. Look for more details plus a registration form in the newsletters. Don’t wait to sign up. This is going to be a good one

 

Rondy Trip• Cow Heaven, Sage and Horse Canyon

Saturday April 7, 2018

Leaders: Bill Powell  and Bob Jacoby

This scenic trip will begin at the Ridgecrest Fairgrounds Rondy site and head west into three little known canyons in the eastern flank of the Sierra Nevada. The wildflower show should be spectacular as we visit each of these three canyons on very interesting roads requiring high clearance and potentially four wheel drive. For more information on this trip, contact Bob Jacoby in advance or you can sign up for the trip at the Rondy.

 

Rondy Trip• Tour of the Trona Pinnacles

Saturday April 7, 2018

Leaders: Jerry & Dolly Dupree

This will be a dirt road tour of the Trona Pinnacles about 20 miles east of Ridgecrest. The Pinnacles are large tufa formations left over from the last ice age. They are most unusual and are one of the most unique attractions in the Mojave Desert. For more information on this trip contact Jerry Dupree in advance or you can sign up for the trip at the Rondy.

 

Rondy Outbound Trip• East El Paso Mountains

Sunday April 8, 2018

Leader: Nelson Miller

Meet just outside the camp area entrance at the Desert Empire Fairgrounds at 9:00 a.m. on Sunday. We will explore the eastern El Paso Mountains, visiting the “Little Grass Shack”, petroglyph sites, and large (20’ diameter), rock circles. We will proceed along Mesquite Springs Road, also visit a miner’s cabin and Holland Camp (a 1920’s mining camp) and end at Garlock, an early 1900’s ghost town and mill site.

 

There may be more trips than are listed here - see the newsletters

Hastings Cutoff Expedition

Hastings Cutoff Expedition

Mon-Wed, July 9-11, 2018

Join Bob Jacoby and Bill Powell for an exploration of the infamous Hastings Cutoff of the California Trail. We will rendezvous outside Wendover, UT on July 9th for a three day trip through the back country of Eastern Nevada. The off-road distance is approximately 250 miles. We will be going over several passes and the altitude will be between 4000 and 6000 ft. We will have the option of staying overnight in Wells, NV the first night or camping at a Forest Service campground. The second night we intend to camp at a county recreation area. We will be able to gas up in Wells after the first hundred miles. Fuel is available about 20 miles from the second overnight stop if needed. The route conditions vary from pavement to near bush whacking. Some areas may be muddy depending on weather. One of the passes goes through a juniper forest where clearance can be tight. Four wheel drive will be mandatory. Expect to see lots of wildlife. While pre-running the route, Bill encountered numerous elk, antelope, wild horses, and golden eagles. There will be opportunities for soaking in natural hot springs as well. Contact Bill at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or (541) 908-0826 for more info. GPS waypoints are available.

Anza Borrego Overland Trip

Anza Borrego / Overland Trail Trip

March 7 & 8, 2018 • Leaders: Jerry & Dolly Dupree

The Anza Borrego / Overland stagecoach trail trip will begin March 7, 2018 at the home of Jerry and Dolly Dupree in La Quinta at 9:00 a.m. We will drive past Merv Griffin’s house on the way to Highway 86 along the west side of the Salton Sea. We will turn off on Highway 78 and the first stop will be Font’s Point, four miles off road to the overlook of the Borrego Badlands. It is a spectacular view which has been in movies and is the site of a current television commercial. The next stop will be Coyote Canyon, which parallels the San Jacinto earthquake fault and was the route of the De Anza expedition which brought settlers from Sonora, Mexico to be the first non native settlers in San Francisco. They brought a herd of over 800 cattle and horses, which was how they packed lunch in those days. There are 130 metal sculptures around Borrego Springs, depicting prehistoric animals and other creations. We can drive out to them for pictures or to see them up close. There is a map showing what they are and and their locations. The sculptures by themselves are worth a visit to the area. The next stop will be the Anza Borrego State Park for lunch and a visit to the park headquarters to view exhibits and a video of the park. Anza Borrego is the largest state park and all of the other state parks would fit within its borders, completely surrounding the community of Borrego Springs. The De Anza expedition passed through and a woman delivered a baby while there. At the southern entrance to the town there is a large roundabout named “Christmas Circle” to commemorate the event. It serves as the town social center with various celebrations on weekends. We will reserve a group campground in the State Park for those with RVs or camping. We will also reserve a number of hotel rooms about a mile from the State Park headquarters in Borrego Springs.

The trip will be at about the peak of wildflower season and if we are lucky, it will be as beautiful as it was last year. On March 8 we will tour part of the Overland Trail which was a stagecoach route which was the southern, all weather route from St. Louis, MO to San Diego, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. Our trip will head down the stage route on a paved highway to tour on of the Stage Stations which has been restored. There were stage stops every 20 miles to change horses, eat, and sleep, and “refresh” for the next leg of the journey. During the Mexican American War, the Mormon Battalion traveled this route to serve in the largest battle of the war at San Pascual, which is located between Escondido and Rancho Bernardo. The soldiers ran into an obstacle in a box canyon, and using hand tools, carved a road out of the rocks wide enough to drive wagons and cannons through. During the battle, the Americans were surrounded and low on supplies and ammunition, and had to eat some of their mules. Kit Carson was able to sneak through the Mexican lines and get to San Diego for reinforcements, which won the battle. We have visited five sites of stage stations and have run across other parts of the Overland Trail during our travels. The highway connecting Gila Bend, Arizona to I-10 is a section of the route.

We will head to Blair Valley, which is an off road trip to a Native American site that was probably occupied for thousands of years. There is a rock shelter, a kitchen area with evidence of smoke on the rocks, and a pictograph along a hiking trail. A pictograph is some type of paint or dye, while a petroglyph is etched in stone. Blair Valley, like the rest of our trip, is very scenic and interesting.

We will arrange for frequent comfort stops, historical and scenic signs and plaques, and photo opportunities. Be sure to bring food to eat along the trip as the stops will be far apart with no restaurants along the way. We will make reservations in a local restaurant for Saturday dinner and Sunday breakfast. Please let us know if you will be going on this trip so we have a count for the state park group camp and meal reservations. With the wildflower season and the time of the year, we hope the weather cooperates for a very interesting, varied, and beautiful tour of the Anza Borrego desert. There are about 500 miles of roads, off road trails within the park.  We will be seeing some of the high points.              ~ Jerry

Second Segment of the Heritage Trail

Second Segment of the Heritage Trail

February 23-25, 2018

Leader: Nelson Miller

This will be a three day trip because there’s a lot of territory to cover – approximately 175 miles through a portion of the East Mojave. The Second Segment of the Heritage Trail begins in old Ivanpah and ends at Rocky Ridge. We will meet at the Yates Well Rd. exit (exit #291) on I-15 at 11:00 on Friday, the 23rd. That is the exit before the Stateline and Primm casinos. More details will follow in the January & February D.E. Newsletters.

Desert Explorers General Meeting

Saturday, March 3rd

11:00 a.m. • Potluck lunch

Marian & Neal Johns’ Home

Directions to Neal & Marian’s

Take I-15 Exit Sierra Ave. and proceed uphill, Northwest into the mountains following Lytle Creek Wash.

You will pass the Valero gas station (on your left) and shortly continue through a stoplight.

Go six and one fourth miles, passing the Ranger Station and two stores on the right and our two story house is on the left behind a black iron fence directly across the street from the white, modular Post Office.

If you get to cross street Valley Vista, you have gone 100 feet too far. Several friendly dogs will greet you but are confined behind fences.

Desperate calls for assistance:  (909) 887-1549.