Thursday March 6,2014 Clarion Inn Suite 201 Blythe, California 5 PM PST
Left Kingman after a breakfast at JB’s and a quick stop at Walgreens for a few toiletries. Since we weren’t going very far we took our time getting on the road. I realize we aren’t really to the West “Coast” but we are as far inland here from the Pacific as we are inland from the Atlantic at home, so I consider this coast to coast. Plus, there isn’t much farther I’d like to be in California—expensive place and crowded. You enter on a major interstate and there isn’t even a welcome center where you can get an official map! The welcome sign itself is blah! And the Internet here at the motel in Blythe is intermittent to be kind.
I will say the ride down from the Arizona border was beautiful—the rains last week have awakened the desert and the mountains are sharp and jagged and unearthly. The road—Ca 95 is a super busy mini-roller coaster.
We were for several miles on another Indian reservation. Not sure exactly where it ended but just North of Blythe we met the Colorado once more and the presence of water changed the entire scene. Myriad palms, irrigated fields, other types of very green trees or palo verdes and we were in town. 86 degrees, men shirtless, though maybe they shouldn’t be,bright sun in an almost cloudless sky.
We were getting 32 miles to the gallon on this road, probably because the heat had caused the pressure in the tires to inflate them more. Since we gained an hour we arrived at the motel at around 2:45 but were ready to stop and get into the cool. I had made the reservation last night online while at Kingman. The Suite here, $125.90 for the night! Used 16,000 points and got it free. That’s how we use our points. We’ve built up over 100.000 points on this trip so far.
Tomorrow we are headed to Joshua Tree National Park. We had planned on staying at Barstow tomorrow night after cutting through the park and then heading back to Arizona and Antelope Canyon. Seems the road to Page from Tuba City had a landslide last year and the detour looks like a pain. That makes Barstow kind of north of where we want to be then. I was looking at Chiricahua National Monument but that is really a good deal south. Should have researched last night and come into Joshua from 29 Palms instead of leaving that way. The problem is tomorrow night’s stay—don’t want to come all the way back to Blythe after a day in the desert nor go back to Kingman. Oh, piffle.
Anyway, we decided to do Joshua Tree instead of Death Valley. Don’t know where we’ll stay or where we are headed next but it will be out of California for sure! Will let you know tomorrow night where we are. For now, just terribly excited to see the desert floor –hope there are as many flowers as we saw today. No matter what, it is another new stamp in my National Parks passport. That in itself is exciting. Until then, hugs to all KandB