We headed north in California a little ways to Anza Borrego State Park. There was a super bloom going on here of desert wildflowers. This does not happen that often, but with all the rain this winter, it was happening now. We went there with Bill and Dory, friends we had met on our trip to Mexico.
We camped on BLM land outside the State Park, at a place called Peg leg’s campsite. It was named for Peg Leg Smith, an old miner who worked in the area. He started life as a fur trapper and explorer, learning native languages, and taking part in several expeditions of the southwest. He was shot in the knee by an Indian. This got infected and had to be amputated below the knee. It is rumored that Peg leg did the surgery himself before passing out. He wore a wooden leg the rest of his days. He also was a well-known horse thief and managed to stay ahead of those searching for him. When he died in 1866, it was rumored that he had a map of gold bearing quartz mine and sold many copies to other prospectors. Interesting character.
We went to the town of Anza Borrego Springs where we picked up a flower map, and ate at a place called Carlee’s. Great hamburgers!
We took a little hike through a slot canyon. It was a fun hike. We had to squeeze through a few places which were exactly one Ellie wide! This was not as pretty as the slot canyons in Zion National Park, or Antelope Canyon, which are famous for the red sandstone cliffs, but it was beautiful anyway. And it was cooler in the canyon than above it. Things are finally starting to warm up for us!
At Coyote Canyon, the flowers were spectacular. So many and so colorful. There were a lot of painted lady butterflies all around too, taking advantage of the blooms. We were there a little early in the season. Later we heard that there were so many people in some of these areas looking at the flowers that they had to shut the roads down in some areas. Glad we were not there then!
In the evening we took a drive out to a place called Font’s point. It was the perfect place to watch the sun go down and put a beautiful finish on a truly amazing day.