Archives for category: – Desert

Photo: Nik Schulz

After leaving the deserts of Arizona we crossed over into the deserts of California. We’d initially planned to camp at Joshua Tree’s south entrance off of the 10 freeway, but we completely missed the exit and ended up in Indio (in the Palm Springs/Coachella area). By the time we got there it was well past sundown and the wind was blowing an absolute gale. We shelved our camping plan and headed to a hotel.

After a hot shower and a good night of sleep we ready to head into Joshua Tree and found what was probably a more interesting way in.

Read the rest of this entry »

As part of our Southwest Trip this summer, we drove through the Prescott National Forest. We shot video of the most remote part of that drive, Forest Road 82A through Crooks Canyon.

Here’s the blog post about this part of the trip: Southwest Trip, Part 4: Prescott, AZ.


Photo: Nik Schulz
.

After heading out of Sedona we made our way over to Prescott for some more backcountry exploration and to say hello the team at Overland Journal.

A quick note: if you find yourself on Highway 89A about 20 miles northeast of Prescott, you’ll be within spitting distance of Jerome, AZ. Do yourself a favor and stop. Jerome is an old mining town that’s half deserted, half lived-in and 100% amazing. I’d tell you more but unfortunately we didn’t have time to stop. Word had it there was a BBQ on at the Overland Journal.

Update: Here’s a quick video of the trip.
Read the rest of this entry »


I realized I hadn’t written anything about our Southwest trip for awhile and, since we’re heading out on another trip soon, I thought I’d better get cracking. So here it is: Part 3.

After Canyon de Chelly we headed to Sedona, AZ. I’ll tell you right off the bat, it’s not much to see. It is beautifully situated, I’ll give it that. Towering walls of red rock surround it in dramatic fashion, but the town itself looked upscale suburban. We couldn’t even find a historic downtown, just a retail strip.

The road getting there was pretty good though. We came in on Schnebly Hill Road off of Highway 17. (See map below). Read the rest of this entry »

I cut together this quick video from our trip to Canyon de Chelly in northeastern Arizona. Apologies for the wind noise.

Here’s the blog post about the trip. It includes a map, resources on guides and camping, and a bunch of photos.

Spiderwoman Rock, Canyon de Chelly. Photo: Nik Schulz


After leaving Taos we headed northwest across New Mexico toward Arizona. About 200 miles into that day’s drive, something loomed up over the edge of the horizon. It was Shiprock, the massive remains of an ancient volcano’s innards that rise 1,500 feet above the high desert plain. It was an otherworldly sentinel marking our entrance into the Navajo Nation.

Update: Here’s a quick video of the trip.

Shiprock looms ahead. Photo: Natalie Menacho

Read the rest of this entry »

On the road again heading through Arizona.

Photo: Natalie Menacho

In the first half of June Natalie and I got on the road again for our first big trip of the year. We were headed to the Southwest, land of painted deserts and amazing canyons. Our plan was to get to Taos, New Mexico, as quickly as possible, then head slowly back to Sonoma County and see what we could along the way. On our first night we made it to Barstow. We asked the woman at the motel what drove the Barstow economy. She said, “People trying to get to somewhere else.”

The next morning, on our way to do just that, I didn’t fill up the tank, thinking gas would be cheaper on the highway. I was wrong. It kept getting more expensive the further into the desert we got. And then, after a while, there simply weren’t any more gas stations. Just as I was about to reduce our speed to make the most of our dwindling fuel, a gas station appeared like an oasis — I think it was even called Desert Oasis. Saved! Except that gas was $5.00 a gallon. OK, half a tank then. $50 later, we were back on the road. In Needles, California, right on the Arizona border, I filled up the rest of the tank at something like $4.89/gallon. As soon as we crossed into Arizona it was something like $3.89. D’oh. Read the rest of this entry »