Ehrenberg and Onward

On March 4th, I pack up camp at Borrego Springs, CA and head east to Ehrenberg, AZ. The drive on Borrego Salton Seaway towards Salton City is punctuated by a large ATV gathering that slows traffic considerably. Ah yes, now I remember why I try to avoid traveling on weekends…

May be hard to see, but that vista is full of boondockers with off-road equipment

Going north to Indio on 86 is pleasant enough. There are some neat rock formations on the way and in Indio I stop to get groceries.

Along I10 patches of small purple and yellow flowers are blooming, but they’re too small to really catch while in the truck. The sky is overcast which is nice as it keeps the temperature down. Plus traveling on a cloudy day means I’m not missing out on potential solar power. That makes the whole traveling on a Saturday thing more palatable.

Ehrenberg is a place I visited last year. It’s certainly not the prettiest part of the desert, but after over a week in Borrego Springs with a non-existent signal, I need to catch up on blog and online stuff and Verizon is good here.

Water, dump station, shower, and propane are all a short drive away in town, it’s a convenient place to boondock. Normally there are ample walking options too, but a couple days after arriving highs start getting into the 90’s. Since I need to do computer stuff inside in the morning before it gets hot (there’s no working on my computer outside and no staying in the Casita in the afternoons), walks get pushed until after dark when there’s nothing to photograph. With the moon being as full as it is this isn’t a problem. Afternoons are spent on my β€œpatio” outside lounging in my camp chair in the shade and reading.

One evening I do catch these pretty purple flowers in bloom. There aren’t any at my campsite but other spots out here in the desert are loaded with them.

Several Rubber Tramp folks are camping out here, and occasionally I join them for at night for campfires. One night this little rodent comes scurrying right up to the fire bold as you please and investigates around our chairs. It hangs around long enough for me to get a picture of it. I think it’s a kangaroo rat. It doesn’t seem bothered by our voices, movement, or the flash of the camera and even goes into the fire ring right up to the coals. Eventually we shine a flashlight on it and it leaves.

As for the sunsets, well, they certainly aren’t bad.

Soft pinks are the typical theme for the week and a half I’m out here.

I break out a new toy one evening just before sunset, a mini tripod purchased months ago while I was working at Amazon, I’d almost forgotten I had it. Setting it on the ground looking up at the Casita makes for a pretty good picture. If I set a delay on my phone, I can get in the picture myself.

This thing was only $8 on Amazon, is folds down very compact so it can be brought along on hikes and advertises as fitting any phone. For that price it probably won’t last too long but it seems sturdy enough for now. As a solo traveler, it’s going to make getting pictures of myself so much easier, a worthy purchase in my book.

After several days in the 90’s with no relief in sight, it’s time to be moving on. I need to head north where temperatures are cooler, but there’s one more social visit to make. My friends Tammy and Aaron are work-camping in Maricopa just south of Phoenix. They have a spot I can park for a couple nights with electric(!) so I can run my A/C while catching up with them. On the 13th I depart Ehrenberg.

There’s a hillside along I10 east of Ehrenberg that is just loaded with the purple flowers! So many that they’re clearly visible through my dirty windshield from a distance. It still looks more impressive in person where it’s easier to make out the individual flowers. The Brittlebush is also blooming and their clumps of yellow add a nice counterpoint.

Dinner is cooking in the crockpot when I pull in, turkey with this lemony sauce over a bed of pasta with green beans. I don’t make these kind of meals for myself so it’s quite a treat.

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At IO I teach people how to ditch the status quo and travel full-time before retirement, and share stories of my adventures (and misadventures) to inspire future nomads and armchair travelers alike. Included at no additional charge: seizing your dreams, living boldly, and making a difference.


  1. Jodee Gravel on March 18, 2017 at 8:04 pm

    I’m sure you’re aware, but it bears mentioning that when the days are hot, the snakes will be out after dark to hunt when it’s cooler. Be cautious πŸ™‚ Incredible desert blooms!!
    Jodee Gravel recently posted..Return to CaliforniaMy Profile

    • Becky on March 19, 2017 at 12:23 pm

      I’m kind of sad that I haven’t seen a snake out in the desert yet. Not this year or last year. Glad you enjoyed the pictures!

  2. KennyD on March 18, 2017 at 1:45 pm

    I am pretty sure those purple flowers are lupins. They bloom in large masses like that. We saw quite a few of them last week on a trip near San Diego. When combined with huge masses of Orange California Poppies, it is quite a sight.

    • Becky on March 19, 2017 at 12:21 pm

      Cool Kenny. I’m use to seeing them in wetter places but not in the desert. I’ve seen those orange poppies before and yeah, they’re really pretty.

  3. Sarah Shillinger on March 17, 2017 at 10:51 pm

    wonderful pictures

    • Becky on March 19, 2017 at 12:20 pm

      Thanks Sarah.

  4. Furry Gnome on March 16, 2017 at 6:35 pm

    That picture of the purple flowers in the sunset is fabulous, as is that second last one of the purple hillside and yellow in the foreground. We’ve heard a bit about a ‘super-bloom’ in the desert this year because of the rain. I’ve enjoyed following you all winter long.
    Furry Gnome recently posted..Georgian Bay SkiesMy Profile

    • Becky on March 17, 2017 at 10:35 am

      Thanks Gnome. That hillside blew me away, there must have been thousands of flowers on it.

  5. Mark Leonard on March 16, 2017 at 2:01 pm

    We are currently in South Carolina and the high today was hovering around 45. So sad, much better than where we were in Tennessee where a few days it was low 30’s. Stay where its warm Becky. Keep in touch!

    • Becky on March 17, 2017 at 10:33 am

      Nice to hear from you Mark! Hope things warm up on the east coast soon.

  6. Alan Belisle on March 16, 2017 at 9:07 am

    You found the only warm corner of the country. We woke up in Memphis today and it was 36. Not right!
    I love cooking in a crockpot. So many good recipes and so easy. But you do need a crowd to feed.
    Alan Belisle recently posted..Shreveport, Louisiana 3/2/17 – 3/9/17My Profile

    • Becky on March 17, 2017 at 10:32 am

      If only those temperatures could meet in the middle Alan, 90’s is way too warm.

      The food was very good, apparently that recipe is often made with mashed potatoes but I liked it with the pasta.

  7. Cletus on March 16, 2017 at 8:25 am

    As always, another nice post. A great pic of yourself, you look contented. I don’t often comment but do read all your postings.

    • Becky on March 17, 2017 at 10:31 am

      Thanks for reading Cletus!

  8. Greg on March 16, 2017 at 6:30 am

    Very glad to see you jump in front of the camera. Adds a personal element to your blog. Keep up the good work and enjoy your travels!

    • Becky on March 17, 2017 at 10:28 am

      Glad you enjoyed this Greg.

  9. Rob on March 16, 2017 at 4:49 am

    That purple mountain looks good, spring time in the desert is special. I like that steak knife too!

    • Becky on March 17, 2017 at 10:27 am

      Thanks Rob, glad you enjoyed this.

  10. Elaine from BC on March 15, 2017 at 6:25 pm

    Oh, those flowers! Wonderful. I loved the desolate desert at Ehrenberg. The light in your photos takes me right back there.

    • Becky on March 17, 2017 at 10:27 am

      Glad to help you relive some happy memories Elaine. Spring is my favorite time of year.

  11. Jeff on March 15, 2017 at 6:23 pm

    Cute little Kangaroo Rat – they have indeed become accustomed to campers! The pink/purple flower I believe to be a monkey flower, can you see the face in it wit the yellow tongue?

    A friends friend has a house in the BS Garden Show this weekend. Oh boy talk about weekend traffic! arg … but the flowers will be plentiful. You have a beautiful undiscovered spot there … cherish it πŸ™‚

    • Becky on March 17, 2017 at 10:26 am

      Monkey flower seems as possible as anything, thanks Jeff.

      As it was spring break this week in AZ the seclusion out in the booonies has been a bit lacking lately, but they’ll all be going back to school soon.

  12. RGupnorth on March 15, 2017 at 6:09 pm

    Like your new blog picture.

    • Becky on March 17, 2017 at 10:23 am

      Thanks RG.

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