Thursday, February 8, 2018

Texas Dip and Vanilla Ice Cream

Thursday, February 8, 2018 – Location:  Clark Dry Lake near Borrego Springs, CA

Woke up early this morning and saw the moon was rising and I could see a planet shining above it.  I think it is Mars.  Hopefully, Al will correct me if I am wrong.


Today, Yuma and I decided to go to Split Mountain and get some photos.  Been there a number of times, so I figured if I left around 11 A.M, I could go there and be back by 2 P.M and relax for the remainder of the day.  It’s going to be hot one and I would just love to spend the afternoon in my lounge chair in a nice breeze.

We took off and I went into town and filled the Jeep with gas.  I don’t like going anywhere around here without starting with a full tank of gas.  I have a tendency to stray and running out of gas in 85 degree weather is not an option.  As the day progressed, I am certainly glad I did!

From there we headed to hwy 78 via the Texas Dip.  This is a huge wash south of Borrego Springs about 8 miles.   I need to ask a local when the last time this wash ran hard with water.  I’m sure it would wash the road away.  It has a 10% grade which is big.

Can you see the car in the one photo?


After crossing, I took a photo looking back across with San Ysidro Mountains in the background.


At hwy 78, we turned left toward Ocotillo Wells about 10 miles east.  As I was approaching the Ocotillo Wells Airport I could see an odd plane was coming in for a landing.  Now, the airport is not just an ordinary airport.  This one has desert as a landing zone. 





It was amazing to watch.  Looking it up on the internet, it appears to be a military Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey.  I think it is practicing landing in desert conditions and this airport sure fits the bill.  There was dust everywhere.  He came in and touched down for about a minute and up and off he went again.  No one departed that I could see.

IMG_0574  After watching the Osprey, we went through Ocotillo Wells on Split Mountain Road for about eight miles heading south.  Then we saw a large wash to our right just as the blacktop ended and and a sign pointing up the wash.

IMG_0578    IMG_0579IMG_0580IMG_0585

Everything went perfectly.  Yuma and I drove through the wash to Split Mountain and followed the wash through it.  Wonder how long it took for the water to cut this mountain in half.

The day didn’t go as planned.  As usual, when I got through the couple miles of Split Mountain I should have turned around and come back.  The wash goes for miles beyond the mountain higher up into more mountains.

Yuma and I kept driving and saw more beautiful canyons and walked almost seven miles up a very narrow canyon once the Jeep couldn’t go any further.  What was supposed to be a three hour tour turned into a seven hour tour.  We got back to the RV just as the sun was setting.  We’re tired, dirty and hungry.

So, I’m going to stop at the entrance to Split Mountain for tonight and go through the 200 plus photos tomorrow and finish my journey in tomorrow night’s blog.  I know tomorrow will definitely be a stay at home day.  My whole body is killing me tonight.

But, I wasn’t too tired to stop by the Center Market on the way home and pick up my ice cream!  I think pie and ice cream will be my dinner tonight.  Too tired to fix anything.


See you later.


  1. I love the Texas Dip! Not even sure why. It's almost like an optical illusion. Split mountain is so cool! Maybe you should have saved some of your hike for another day. 😀 The moon/planet photo was neat. Hey, you got some good ice cream to go with your Julian pie! Have a good night! ❤

  2. Thanks Dolly. Only ice cream they had. For $6 It better be good.

    Texas Dip is neat. Would love to see it with a massive river of water going through it. That would be neat.

    Sometimes my plans just don't go right. Today was one of them. Wish I didn't have the "wonder what's around the next bend" problem. Always gets me in trouble.😂

  3. Hi Doug, what a great series of photos you captured with that Osprey - Love that monster cloud of dust . It must have been delivering the vanilla ice cream - $ 6 a pint !?! 😈. OUCH !! 😱

    1. You're probably right Moonfly. I guess that's why it was so expensive.

      Wouldn't be good if you're allergic to dust in this part of the country. There's literally tons of it.

  4. I have yet to see on eof the Ospreys take off or land. Very cool. I suppose if they were dropping off troops the sandstorm would have hidden them.
    I see why they call it a Texas dip!
    I have that problem too......just one more turn, one more hill.....

    1. That was cool. I had never even seen an Osprey so I was surprised to see one at that tiny airport.

      Each time I learn not to be so interested in what's around the next hill. Getting too old to do it anymore ☺

  5. Now your talking, pie ala mode for din-din, enjoy!

    1. Thanks Rawn. It was filling but doesn't put meat on the bones. Eggs and bacon this morning!

  6. Loved that Texas dip and the desert airport runway is and interesting site to see. Glad you got the ice cream to go with your pie, sounds like a perfect dinner.

  7. That bright Planet you saw is Jupiter but Mars is also very close by and it's below and to the left of Jupiter. Smaller, dimmer, with a warmer color.

    1. Thanks Al. I did look on the internet and couldn't decide if it was Jupiter or Mars. Picked the wrong one. Should have known that Jupiter would be the brightest planet.

  8. The Texas Dip is really something else..and the Osprey is amazing . Now the drive and hiking you two took, just don't know about that. haha..At least for 6 dollars you got some of the best ice cream there is. Can't wait to see the rest of the pics you decided to post! Have a nice relaxing day!

    1. Thanks Shirley. I will take it easy today. May go up and grab a few photos of the stone snake and that's about all I can handle today.

      Couldn't believe my luck with that Osprey coming in just as I arrived in Ocotillo Wells.

  9. Wow, what a day. You sure do get around and see a lot of things when you're taking it easy.

    I also have the 'what around the next bend' issue but Riley keeps me in check before I go too far usually. What a fantastic drive with the Texas Dip, we did that at night coming home from Yuma I think. I would love to see that in the daylight.

    Amazing pictures of the Osprey, would loved to have seen that. The dust cloud must have hovered for a long time after he left. What a sight to see.

    Maybe the stone snake could wait until after a day of rest and some cooler temps. Seven mile hike is a long one yesterday and the snake today would put me down for a while. However, enjoy the hike if you go!!!

    Love the picture of the ice cream, can you see the folks in the background wondering what the heck you're doing taking a picture of the carton of ice cream. That is too funny.

    1. Met the folks at the store. They're from Saskatchewan. Living in a tent near here. That's toughing it.

      Sorry I gave you such bad info on the snake. I thought I knew where it was, but took me forever to find it. Really tired me out.

      Wish Yuma would tell me to stop and turn around.

  10. Hiking that long a period of time in the desert, sure hope you had a pack with supplies. Not good spending a night out there.
    Nice Pictures!
    Be safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

    1. Luckily washes that go downhill always come out somewhere. Thank goodness.

      A ranger gave me a map of the area so knew where I was most of the time.

      Amazing how remote this area is. Not a place to be careless.