Wednesday, April 15, 2009


I COULDN'T HAVE GUESSED. I take this picture as a metaphor for my life. Do I have the gumption to go see?

Well for openers there were three flocks of sheep. None of them skiddish--taaaaking their sweet time to let me through. Why try to raise sheep in this forlorn, un-nutritious desert? The answer is directly in front of my truck---for the lambs. Nearly every ewe had a lamb. And that's where the money is. Water and supplemental feed has to be brought out here. The desert is just a cheap place to be. More interesting to me was who---who in this wide world would stay out here and look after them. Who can endure the loneliness? The answer surprised me.----Basque shepherds from spain and only they it seems have what it takes for this job. I saw a trailer in the distance.

This is half of what remains of the crossroads town of Rice, Ca.

And this is the other half. If I were the superstitious sort I may have been spooked at seeing my name on the wall---with instructions to pray. ( I do not) The left hand word is Lord I guess

With binoculars I saw this in the distance and went to investigate. Lots and lots of shoes tied to this fence. I think the desert evokes whimsey like this. I've actually seen an underwear tree.
34 miles is a ways to go for jerky.
Paul and I call it a day well off the road looking down on a dry salt lake. (dale)


Rick Brentlinger said...

What daytime and night-time temperatures are you experiencing in the Mojave at this time of year?

Do you have cellphone service out there?

Are there any springs, creeks or sheltered oasis type places where there is shade and water?


Randy said...

We left on 3/27 and arrived at Death Valley 4/1. Comfortable daytime, about 70 and 45 nights from Blythe to Amboy. Kelso was windy and cold; there forward pleasant. No cell service between Blythe and 29 palms.
No water anywhere that I saw except in the sheep tanks. Shade of some sort is available about everywhere---in the washes.
Thinking of hiking or biking it?
I'm confident the guard at Midland would give you water and the shepherds 5 miles beyond. Then it's a long dry stretch to 29 palms.

wisesongbird said...

Your entries allow me to live the experiences vicariously and think this one - once experienced - may not be one I need to include in future journeys. Thanks for showing me what is out there and am greatly amused by the shoe fence. Hope you and Paul are having a great time on your expedition.