Desert | California

Soaking Up the California Desert

integratronReinvigorate yourself both spiritually and physically on an adventure that explores desert national parks and small towns. With spring-fed mineral pools, epic landscapes, and occasional glimpses of the desert’s creative and eccentric side, this trip will leave you energized and inspired.

Trip Time: 3–4 days, Total Distance: 353mi/567km

Desert Hot Springs. Get pampered with a clay and sandalwood wrap, then dip into mineral pools at The Spring Resort & Spa. With décor out of Marrakesh, El Morocco Inn & Spa offers soothing, exotic escapes. INFO at

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Highs and Lows: Furnace Creek to Anza Borrego

Travel from the lowest spot in North America to pine-topped peaks on an epic desert drive.

Trip length: 4 days, Total distance: 428mi/689km

death-valley-national-parkDAY 1

FURNACE CREEK Start at Death Valley National Park’s excellent visitor center and museum. Head out to hike sand dunes or take a guided tour of ultra-odd Scotty’s Castle. INFO Death Valley National Park

BADWATER (21mi/33km). Pose for pictures next to the sign marking 282 feet below sea level, then explore the sparkling salt flats. INFO Death Valley National Park

BARSTOW (164mi/264km). See a film at Skyline Drive-In, a kitschy icon since 1966. Learn about the “Mother Road” at Route 66 Museum. INFO Barstow Chamber of Commerce

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From Desert Wilderness to Ultimate Luxury

joshua tree national parkCalifornia’s deserts are a place of extremes – from incredibly rugged national parks to the ultimate spa treatments and exclusive celebrity sightings. Traverse our deserts to see the mixture of wilderness and glamour that is truly California.

Trip Time: 6 days


Day 1

Learn the true meaning of “desert” when you visit Joshua Tree National Park. In this desert park, you can take a close look at wild animals and plants that are unique to the region. The scenery, with rocks and extensive stands of Joshua trees, is so unique and mysterious that you might feel like you’ve traveled to a different planet.

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California's Colorful History

Route66RoadExplore California’s colorful historical past in this journey through the southwest.

Trip Length: 2 days

Day 1

Start your visit to Barstow at Tanger Outlet Center, located at the Lenwood Rd. exit off I-15. Here you will find plenty of great outlet shopping at over 35 brand name stores. While you’re here, you can enjoy a bite to eat or sip on a smoothie at the food court before heading to the Barstow California Welcome Center for last-minute trip details or directions.


Golden Canyon Trail

golden-canyonThis is an easy worthwhile hike. You will not be disappointed. You walk through a canyon with high walls at least 50 feet overhead. It is obvious how water has influenced this arid landscape. When it comes here, there is a lot of it, and it is usually moving very rapidly. Multiply that by several million years and you'll easily see how this canyon was formed.

This is an interpretive trail with many stops that the entire family can enjoy, provided you don't bring them here in the summer when it’s dangerously hot.

You can turn this hike into a loop, which sadly time did not allow for, but we did get to explore the cliffs and get a twilight view of Red Cathedral. What a beautiful spot!

Trailhead: From the Furnace Creek Visitor Center drive South on Highway 190 for about 2 miles, and take the right turn onto the 178 South. The sign will say to Badwater. Drive for another 2 miles to the Golden Canyon parking area on your left - the east side of the road. Park, pick up a trail guide and set out on your way.

At the kiosk you can check out the interesting explanation of the geology and natural history.

Close by is the Artist's Drive, make sure to take this one-way not to be missed course after your hike.

Distance:             3 miles round trip

Elevation Gain:     525 ft

Hike Time:             1.5 hours

Difficulty:               Easy

Trail Condition:      Well maintained trail

HikeType:              Out and Back

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Lost Horse Mine & Mountain Trail

trail-mapTry this great starter hike for Joshua Tree National Park.

You get some good mountain views; follow an historic wagon road that leads to the most prosperous of Joshua Tree gold mines. The remains of which are kept behind a chain link fence for their protection.

Trailhead: Take the 10 towards Palm Springs and exit on the 62 heading North. Follow the 62 through the desert hamlets of Morongo, Yucca Valley, and Joshua Tree. From there you will see signs that tell you how far you are from the West entrance to the park. Turn right on Park and follow it to the entrance booth where you'll pay an entrance fee that is good for one week in the park.

Drive about ten miles to Key's View Road, turn right (just before Cap Rock) and follow it until you see a sign for Lost Horse Mine. Drive about a mile down the dirt road to the parking area.

Distance:              4.5 miles round trip

Elevation Gain:     700 ft

Hike Time:             2.5 hours

Difficulty:              Easy

Trail Condition:      Fire road/pavement

HikeType:            Out and Back

For more information visit

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