Saturday, September 15, 2012

The Desert and the Sea

As summer drew to a close, I took advantage of my abundant time by heading east into the Anza-Borrego Desert for some camping. Along with me came my friends Shannon, Valerie and Colin, all of who I had somehow convinced to leave the pleasant temperatures of coastal San Diego for the heat of the high desert.

We arrived at the campsite Sunday night and had just pitched camp when a thunderous, powerful dust storm rose up around us, coated us in dirt and filled our eyes with gritty sand. I managed to catch a giant tumbleweed as it sped through our camp!

After the dust came a heavy rain, which had us playing a game of cards in the tent while the parched desert quenched its thirst.

The next morning we hiked up to the Borrego Springs Palm Oasis, a frequent destination of my childhood boy scout days. Unfortunately the water levels were a bit low, but we still managed to spend a cool day beneath the palms.

On the hike back from the Oasis the rubber on my boots mysteriously disintegrated, which forced Colin and I to scratch our planned second leg of the trip, which involved backpacking part of the Pacific Crest Trail that winds its way along the west edge of the Borrego Desert.

Instead, Colin and I set off on an alternate (and much wetter) adventure the second we got home. Well, first we stopped at Julian Pie Company in Julian, CA.

THEN we set off on our kayaking adventure. We inflated a rubber kayak and paddled out from the beach in Oceanside, battling the surf. We then turned south and paddled along the coast of Carlsbad and turned into the entrance of Agua Hedionda, a lagoon. We paddled up the lagoon, under the 5 freeway and into a beautiful estuary filled with brooding crabs, elegant herons and flapping fish which frequently threatened to jump into our boat. Valerie's grandmothers live on Agua Hedionda and we beached our Kayak in their neighborhood, finishing our desert to sea adventure in a relaxing hot tub.