Mojave Snowbird Trip – Chemehuevi Mountains

The what mountains? Amazing how many unknown places there are down here in the Mojave, I stopped on a gravel patch next to US95 and discovered these!

It was so nice at Sand Mine Road this morning I had a hard time leaving and almost stayed another day, but I have a couple of weeks and can get further south with that much time so off I went. The drive through Lake Mead National Recreation Area is fantastic, if you like barren rocky desert with rocky mountains, which I do. I definitely need to get back there and explore a lot more. My intended destination was the Dead Mountains, the BLM web site showed a single camp site north of the wilderness area along a dirt road. What they didn’t say is that the road is really a narrow sandy two track unsuitable for The Caravan. I pushed on trying to find another boondocking spot but there was nothing close, I ended up continuing on south of Needles on US95 and pulled over in the gravel spot.

Biff and I went for a short walk around camp to see what could be found, I found cactus and succulents, he had other interests…

This barrel cactus was about 3 feet tall, no cactus in Wayne County gets that tall (because of the cold)
Biff’s interests were more edible than mine , though he buried this one for later. He also picked up a cactus skeleton and somewhat bemused by it.
A very healthy Ocotillo, about 15 feet tall with the central canes being about 2″ wide.
Ocotillos only get their leaves after a rainfall though they can keep them quite a long time. Most of the time they look like dead sticks standing up in the desert.
The ‘deadly’ Cholla, the pieces jump off and attach themselves firmly to whatever they touch, it is very painful to remove them.
I believe that the little ‘crown’ in the middle of the picture is where the last fruit was, but it could also be the beginning of a flower (experts?)
Some cactus just love rock gardens, these two were about 9″ tall.
Even the normally bedraggled creosote bushes were putting on a show.

Mojave Snowbird Trip – Sand Mine Road

Although I don’t mind the cold much I decided to head toward the Mojave desert for a couple of weeks in The Caravan with Biff, Frikka stayed in Cedar City where she will be getting some behavioral training (she’s nuts!).

Brown’s Road leading down to Koosharem – snowbirding seems like a good idea.

My destination for the night was just south of Overton, Nevada at Sand Mine Road, a free BLM camping area near Lake Mead. I got my usual late start, although only about 75 minutes late this time which is pretty good for me. That meant I arrived after dark and took the first spot off the highway. It turns out there really is a mine and they work all night, I woke at 5am (Mountain) to the sound of the globada globada machine and a truck backing up. It wasn’t loud enough to keep me awake last night but seemed more obvious this morning.

Morning One of the Mojave Snowbirding Trip 2019

The temperature at dawn was 43F and it was surprisingly humid for the desert, there was a lot of water along the road on the way down and the soil is quite moist, though the ‘soil’ is mostly rocks. The Caravan is very dirty having been in the snow for the last couple of months.

Looking east from camp down Sand Mine Road.

I can see about half a dozen other RVs further down the road, they probably can’t hear the mine and I will explore further down next time I’m here. It’s 300 miles from Torrey so a bit far to come just for a day or two, great stopping place for heading south though.

Biff enjoying the sunshine and view.

Headed further south today into the Mojave Desert. The mine noise has stopped, perhaps they only work at night to avoid the heat of the summer?