Friday, 25 January 2013


Quartzite...What can I say? Trish's plan was to go to Celia's Rainbow garden and then to a Paul Winer concert. Okay!!Celia was Paul and Joanne's daughter who died of a viral heart infection when she was only 8 years old. Her love of nature and beauty inspired her parents to donate the land where a beautiful memorial has been constructed and many others had had their loved ones memorials in this beautiful place.

Following I will just add the pictures of a few of the other memorials


Whore house
The interesting part for me is that Paul Winer's wife Joanne comes from St Thomas Ontario Canada.
I did not get a chance to meet her and would have loved to as she may have known my family.
Anyway we then went to the Paul Winer concert. He is a great piano player and a nudist. However he did wear clothes for his concert because it was cold and there was a few young people there however if you go to the Oasis Book Store be prepared because this is his domain. I had no idea this character even existed but it was interesting. The town was going to pass an ordinance to make him wear clothes but when they realized his contribution to the town decided not to. He joked that his 94 year old parents who have been married 74 years probably wondered why they put out 30,000 dollars for his education to become a nude piano player. We returned to the BLM land where the motorhome was . This is the sunset that night.
I had no idea that so many people lived in their motorhomes and campers and trailers on these places in the desert. It is free for 14 days and then you have to move on. There were thousands.
The next day after another very cold night I went to Quartzite the bookstore!!!How often do I get to see a sight like that? Then I went over and met my friend Phil from BMW. He gave me his phone number at Agua Caliente. I bet he'll never do that again. We rode down to find Paul but he was not around so I tagged along while he registered at the HAM radio event.
 I got back in time for the Boondockers happy hour and met many of Trish's friends. Once the sun went down though it cooled right o and everyone turned in.
The next morning before I left Trish took me east in the desert towards a little town of Bouse where general Patton trained his troops and out in the middle of nowhere are thes large letters made out of rock which say Quartzite and an arrow pointing to the town and then another group pointing to North.
Next is a Palo Verde tree
Then Trish took me to another phenomen in the same area of this desert and it is an Intaglio . An earth drawing by the ancient indians. This one is called the Bouse Fisherman and would probably be seen better if you were above it. 
Back to the motorhome and I packed up for my trip back to Palm Springs. I had to head home on Friday. The next day the weather warmed up but I got the bike put away in the carport and my packing done in preparation for my flight home. Everyone in California and Arizona are happy because since I left temparatures have risen and are more like they are supposed to be. In closing I have to include a picture of my 3 housemates. Ken and Karen's 3 dogs  .

B, Quiz and Dune

B is kind of my favorite. She truly lives up to her name..She is Bad, a Brat, and a Bitch but so inquisitive and friendly. Thank you to everyone who made my trip memorable.

Riverside, Palm Springs,Quartzite

The wind aain was bad as I headed to Riverside and there were Palm branches all over the roads. After a lot of messing around I finally found the motel 6 and did my laundry. Went across the road to Denny's for supper and turned in for the night. The next morning I headed over to Riverside BMW contemplating 2 new tires. Fortunately I only needed the rear. About 1000 miles left on the front. The wind abated somewhat and I had a nice ride back to Palm Springs. Ken was freezing in Denver and Karen was at work so I just sat on their sundeck and read. It was one of the beautiful days. Karen and I went to Twin Palms for dinner and had another great meal and service. I did not do too much the next few days as it was cool so I just did a little grocery shopping at Trader Joes and made dinner when Karen got home from work. One day I tried to go up to Idlewilde out of Palm Springs. It was a great ride but as I reached 4000 ft elevation I encountered snow and ice in the shady curves and decided it was just not worth it so turned around and had lunch a a lovely little spot called Sugarloaf.
This is the snow
outside the little cafe I stopped at. Further up there was more.

Looking off in the distance from the cafe'
The next pictures are taken from a lookout going back to Palm Springs and if they look familiar it is because this is the exact same spot we stopped on the guided motorcycle trip 2 years ago.
Notice the road winding below.
I stopped at this MacDonald's in Desert Mirage a few times and 1 time there was this roadrunner mooching. I was very surprised as most times you never see one..only as they zoom by.
Now that is not something you see at MacDonald's in Calgary.
I just kind of hung out in Palm Springs and on Sunday Karen and I took the three whippets and went to a coursing event in Chino, California. It turned out to be a beautiful day and I was amazed at how green the fields were. Coursing is very different as there are 3 garbage bags attached to a rope which is put around pulleys in a field and then a motor winds it around and the dogs are judged in how well they follow the course and how fast. It is interesting.
This was looking the other way from the event just showing the scenery and how green the fields were.
That is the field with the course set up beyound those vehicles.
Note the snow in the distance on Big Bear mountain. The one I went part way up on the way to Death Valley.
Well back in Palm Springs I decided I still had several days to go so thought I would go and visit my friend Trish again just outside of Quartzite. So on Monday morning I headed out east on I 10 again. Except I ended up going on 111 all the way to Coachella where I stopped for breakfast and with a 40mph cross wind debated wether I should go or not and once I got up on I 10 I kind of wanted to change my thinking but there is no place to turn around so after much perserverance I finally got to Blythe California and pulled into a Motel 6. I only had about 30 miles to go but that was it. I was done for the day. I went that evening to the Red Cactus Grill and honestly had one of the best cup of soups ever. Potato, Bacon,Caramel with carmelized onions on top. Obviously homemade and absolutely delicious. The next day I continued my journey to Quartzite and found my friend Trish.
We had a quick lunch and headed into town where I found some amazing things which I will do in the next blog.

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Sierra Nevada's back to Palm Springs

The next morning after the coyotes came to visit the campsite we got up and 5 of us with Don in the lead. Along with Spike. Ray, myself and Bob bringing up the rear head out to Panamint Spring and Stovepipe Wells. I had wanted to go to Darwin Falls but after one look at the "road" decided to go on with the boys to Lone Pine for lunch. What a glorious ride. And the beauty of the little town at the base of the snow covered Sierra Nevada's was worth every moment.
We ate a a little restaurant called the Alabama Hills It was positively excellent. And I bought a loaf of tomato, basil cheese bread to share with the biker's stew back at the campground that night.
Tha's Bob in the foreground.
This is the little service station and store at Stovepipe Wells.
At the service station in Lone Pine
On the way over to Lone Pine we stopped at this overlook.
It was so very cold but extremely beautiful and I was so delighted to see the Joshua Trees at the higher elevation.

Back at the campsite we enjoyed our biker stew and it was delicious. Jim made 4 different cobblers. I only had a little of the cherry one and it was delicious. That evening we were treated to a lovely sunset and the next morning we arose to a glorious double rainbow over Death Valley.

I then packed up and headed back to Stovepipe Wells because I wanted to buy a T shirt and then I went to Beatty Nevada and there was snow on the ground so I had a hot coffee and breakfast and headed eas with the thought of going to Red Canyon but with the wind and cold decided to head south so went through Pahrump Nevada and back to Baker and finally ended up staying in Barstow California that night. This was outside my door after I checked in and the next morning my bike was white with frost.
I took the next picture in Riverside across the road from the motel.
After cleaning off the frost I had breakfast and then headed south through Baker and then San Bernadino and into Riverside. I stayed at the Motel 6 there as I had an appointment for tires at Riverside BMW the next morning and it worked out very well.


Friday, 11 January 2013

Calimesa to Death Valley

I spoke to a gentleman at the McDonald's in Calimesa and he said to stay on 330 and so I did 3/4 of the way up Big Bear but when the cars started coming down covered with snow made a decision to turn around and go back and get on 215 and then I 15 towards Las Vegas.As I was passing through Victorville I was very cold and when I spotted the Harley Dealer I decided to get out of the wind and consequently met some lovely people and got a free coffee.

 My initial idea was to stop in Barstow as the wind was horrific but then I stopped at Barstow Station. It was a place full of food places and gift shops and all the tour buses stop there.

I had a bite to eat here at Panda
Express and made the decision to carry on to Baker. The wind got a whole lot worse but there did not appear to be any motels in business in Baker. I tried to ask someone what I could look forward to if I headed north towards Death Valley but they were either tourists or so busy I just gave up and decided to just go for it. There was not much traffic on this road and I surely did hope that there was something at Shoshone. I was absolutely delighted when I arrived and found this quaint little place. It had Charlie Brown's General Store, The Famous Crowbar Cafe' and Saloon, Shoshone Inn and Museum. The gas was 5.39/gallon for regular and went up from there. I stayed at The Shoshone Inn for 85.00/night. I met a lovely couple Paul and Val from Baker Oregon and we enjoyed Dinner and breakfast together.
Smoke Tree at the Shoshone Inn
The next morning before I reached Death Valley Junction I took these next 2 pictures.
The next day I left this great little place and headed for Death
Valley. I arrived at the campsite in Texas Springs and was greeted by Jim and Nancy the hosts. I proceeded to set up my tent and a few other people came and some left.
 I put my hot rock in the fire to heat up and put in my sleeping bag and showed the trick to Spike from Massesschusets.
He thought it was a good trick and even though the temperature dropped below freezing I was cosy and warm.
The next morning  Spike and I went for breakfast at Furnace Creek Ranch. I had been there the day before and albiet pricey the meals were very good. Spike and I decided to  go up to Dantes View and then we walked through Golden Canyon and rode to Badwater 282 feet below sea level.
Furnace Creek Ranch kind of conjures up thoughts of heat but not so. It remained cool for most of the time we were there. 
In Golden Canyon
This is the view from Dantes View
Zabriske Point
Badwater. I had wanted to go to Devil's golf course but the terrain was much as you see here but it was down a long dirt road.
The next day we were to take an incredible ride will save it for next episode.