I made a wrong turn!

There’s a gravel road that heads from where I’m staying in Sky Valley into the heart of Joshua Tree National Park. Having bought a Subaru a few years ago I felt that this could be my first opportunity to 4×4 big time, not necessarily over boulders but at least more than what my old sports car could do.

I did my research, looking at local maps, some of which show the road and some that don’t and checking out Google Earth. Google Earth is my favourite research tool and this gravel 4×4 road into Joshua Tree is quite visible. No problemo, here I come!

This afternoon I headed out to check out the scenery and road conditions. Research! I drove down Dillon Rd. to the gravel road turnoff, headed east and… discovered the real desert lifestyle. About 2 kilometers in I came across a private property with some derelict jeeps sitting outside, with people living in them, weird stuff! What was even stranger was that a derelict boat was on the property, maybe something left over from 3,000? years ago when the ocean was present in this valley? There isn’t any water near this place! Time to move on. Next I came to a wash with what I thought was a Jesus statue watching over it. On closer inspection this turned out to be a Bugs Bunny (Bugs Cat?) with holes likely created by a shotgun. Very strange again.

The cat or rabbit full of holes

The cat or rabbit full of holes

I’m a little freaked at this point. May as well press on and see what I find, darkness is a few hours away so I’m likely still safe from whatever lives here. A few kilometers further I came across what used to be somebody’s camp. Old video tapes, 20 pairs of old shoes, a sofa, a pair of panties, a teddy bear having seen better days. What was the most strange was a book lying in the rubble, The Practical Handyman’s Encyclopedia. Either this fellow didn’t follow the directions or the author must have grown up in the desert as well!

The Practical Handymans Encyclopedia

The Practical Handyman's Encyclopedia

May as well continue at this point, Joshua Tree must be just around the corner. And then the road came to an end! It looked like a camp in Afghanistan with shotgun shells littering the earth, not exactly the desert wildflowers I had hoped to find. Some guy must have had a bad bowling night as a few pins were blasted to bits. Someone else must have lost ther love, a Turtles Sugar Free candy box pumped full of blasts from his controlling shotgun. Ah, Joshua Tree is so close but so far away! The really scary thing is that these folks aren’t good shots. Meet them on a bad night and they likely will blow the toes off your foot rather than finishing you. Take a look at this scorecard, I could do better! I’ve avoided mentioning all the beer cans and other hard liquor items out there but maybe that’s part of the issue.

Shotgun Shells

Shotgun Shells

These folks are bad shots!

These folks are bad shots!

Well, good things come to an end. I decided that the safety of my gated trailer park community would be a better place for me tonight. It’s not like I don’t enjoy getting out there in the real world but this was just plain spooky. With my wife and dog in mind I decided to head home, just in time it turns out. As I was getting in the car for the last time I heard a few blasts from a shotgun and in the distance, beautifully silhouetted I must add, were a few guys target shooting at Buggs Bunny or who knows what. They had a new car so at least I felt I might live another day but the night was only beginning. Time to run!

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One Response to “I made a wrong turn!”

  1. Dave Blackey says:

    These are more signs of your typical patriotic American! Dave

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