The Teardrop meets a Joshua Tree
This winter I’ve mainly been traveling from home, exploring the desert on foot in my big backyard. But for years now, I’ve been saying that I’m due for a winter road trip across southern Arizona, one of my last big blank stretches of the Southwest. In the two weeks before my birthday I hit the road on two back to back voyages with two of my favorite copilots through southern New Mexico west into Arizona along the Mexican border all the way to Joshua Tree National Park!
La Ventana Arch in El Malpais, New Mexico.
Along the way we hit El Malpais and El Morro National Monuments, Pie Town, Truth or Consequences, and City of Rocks State Park in New Mexico and Chiricahua National Monument, Cochise Stronghold, Bisbee, Saguaro National Park, Biosphere 2, Organ Pipe Cactus and Tuzigoot National Monuments in Arizona. With all those National Parks and Monuments, I bought myself an America the Beautiful National Parks pass, which will pay for itself many times over in the next year. Here’s to seeing more of the world!
Big sycamores in Mogollon, New Mexico
Revisiting one of my first childhood loves: climbing sycamore trees!
Camped at City of Rocks, New Mexico
Lone Boulder Crack Climb, City of Rocks, NM
Table Mountain Sunset
Cochise Head from Sugarloaf Mountain
Hiding out in Cochise Stronghold
Bisbee Self Portrait
7 Miles from Mexico! We passed through a dozen checkpoints but were waved through all of them with few questions and no searches.
Beware Coyotes. We didn’t have any problems traveling and boondocking along the border. I left a couple of gallons of water outside the Teardrop every night so that if somebody did sneak by us they’d hopefully get what they needed and keep going.
Inside Biosphere 2. The Earth is Biosphere 1.
Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument. Such an incredibly lush desert landscape!
An Organ Pipe Cactus
Home Sweet Home in Joshua Tree
Following a hand and toe route up to a lookout
Life is Good
Joshua Tree D.O.G.
Check out my post How To Plan A Killer Road Trip for tips on how to put together your very own road trip. For lots more pix, check out my Flickr. I’ll be in New Mexico for another month or so before I hit the road for the summer. This year, I’m thinking Wyoming, Idaho & Montana! Stay tuned…
Mary Caperton Morton is a freelance science and travel writer with degrees in biology and geology and a master’s in science writing. A regular contributor to EARTH magazine, where her favorite beat is the Travels in Geology column, she has also written for the anthologies Best Women's Travel Writing 2010 and Best Travel Writing 2011. Mary is currently based in western Colorado. When she’s not at the computer she can usually be found outside -- hiking, skiing, climbing mountains and taking photographs. Visit her website at www.marycapertonmorton.com.
Some of my favorite parts of the US. Thanks for the reminders of just how beautiful it is.
Nice pictures! I just started hiking too and I love it!
wow wonderful pics, amazing places…LUV the catcus…
Mary, question for you…I have pulled the T.D. in the last couple of days at 55mph..Gas millage bad…what speed do you pull at normally and what kind of MPG have you been getting????
That’s some amazing scenery. I’ve been considering taking up hiking lately. This pretty much convinces me it’s a good idea.
Great pictures of a fascinating area! Hope you survived your winter house-sitting. I look forward to following you on the road. Fabulous flickr collections!
Lovely to be free to travel
thank you for the lovely photos of sunny climes. I have a question: where do you hike with your dogs in Joshua Tree? I understood that dog access was very limited there.
Biosphere was interesting….you post about Joshua Tree one of the best! Love following you….you make rocks look like boulders!
Absolutely INCREDIBLE pictures…my favorite part of the country!
Thanks for the ride. wonderful country, love your pics and descriptions, and the inclusion of the intriguing teardrop in the story. Looking forward to more!
Amazing! Now I wanna go there 🙂
New artwork on the teardrop?
Wonderful photos, as always!
Hi Mary… so fun to see photos of places Clifford and I have traveled and camped, and places yet to explore. Thanks for sharing. If you make it to Wallace, Idaho on your travels, be sure to stop in at Rocky Mountain Organics on 5th Street. It would be great to see you in person again. Best to you on all your journeys. Carol
I love seeing your pictures of the southwest – one part of the country I haven’t been able to get to yet. More inspiration to visit some friends down there I guess.
Though I have to admit since I’m new to Big Sky Country I find it hard to leave Montana. There is just so much to see and do. I look forward to reading about your adventures up here.
Thanks for putting the water out! And the rest of the entry was fantastic!
What a beautiful collection of photos of what is clearly an amazing part of the world. I loved seeing you and your dogs enjoying the big wild outdoors….what wonderful adventure 🙂