Tom and Pam on a California tour Fall 2016 travel blog

San Diego Desserts


We left San Diego about 9:00 AM – not as early as we needed to. Our route of choice was I-8 because we had never been down that road and were heading to Tucson. San Diego is essentially at sea level but within a couple of hours we had climbed to 4,00 feet above sea level. Pulling the trailer slows us down quite a bit so we were behind at the end of 2 hours. We also had an unhappy cat and we presume it was his ears popping since ours popped several times.

When we dropped down into the desert of the Imperial Valley we had an easier ride. There were a lot of border patrol vehicles out on the roads and we saw at least 2 “stops” in progress. The Imperial Valley is farming and dairy country. )f course water is channels from the Colorado River. Because of the dairies there is a lot of alfalfa grown locally but we saw tomatoes, beans, cabbage and corn. Again the desert isn’t where you expect to find farming at all but this was on a grand scale. Tom was looking forward to getting into Arizona because California sets the speed limit at 55 for trucks and vehicles pulling trailers. Arizona has a lot of farming too in the desert. I think they divert from the Salt River as does Phoenix.

When we crossed the very narrow Colorado River into Arizona my phone chirped and we were told we had just lost an hour. Our destination was Tucson, 400 miles from San Diego. The speed limit changed but the wind came up. We could not believe all of the RV parks along I-8 for the snowbirds. There are a lot - some are “resorts” others are sand boxes. It became clear we were not going to make it to Tucson so I found another military base to stay at – Barry Goldwater Bombing Range at Gila Bend AAFB. It was convenient but we warned about drinking the water – arsenic from the copper mining days – and letting the water run through our filter because there is a lot of sediment, which would gum it up. We enjoyed the sunset but decided we would not spend 2 nights. Rio was glad to be out of the truck.

The daytime temperature as travelled down the road was great compared to San Diego. Remember I said we will go back to San Diego so I can be forgiving.

We left at 8 am the next morning without a final destination in mind other than Caballo Lake at Truth or Consequences, NM. It is scheduled as our last stop before Santa Fe but it is 417 miles from Gila Bend, AZ.

I forgot the San Diego dessert picture so I tacked it on here.



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