Monday, June 15, 2009

Gloom and Doom


June Gloom is a Southern California phenomenon where a thick layer of fog builds up over the coast and the Inland Empire during the month of June. It can be thousands of feet thick and linger for weeks. It is very depressing for people living in the area. Southern Californians love sun so when June Gloom gets too intense they head to the desert to escape it.

This morning I drove down to Carlsbad to pick up some computer equipment from a nice lady named Sherrie. I was fully expecting to be engulfed in June Gloom but was instead met with beautiful sunny weather overlooking the ocean. Cool, around 65, but clear and calm. I wished I'd had time to go for a hike on the coast but no luck. Driving back, I was near the Santa Rosa Plateau and I was hoping to hike there but my son had to be back for baseball so that was out. Hiking near home would have to do for today.

Last night my neighbor across the street mentioned that he used to go up to someplace here in La Quinta with the scouts that they called Bat Cave Canyon. I think I know where it might be so I headed out that direction this afternoon.

I head up the trail at the top of the La Quinta cove heading straight for the mountains.

Instead of following the normal route out to the canyon I head out across the open desert.

The weather is bizarre for the desert in the middle of June. We don't get cloud cover here usually. It's like June Gloom moved inland and took over. The temperature is actually quite cool. I like it.

Normally I go up a sandy wash in order to get to the canyon and the start of the Boo Hoff Trail. This time by going cross country I found an actual trail. This is the way I will be going from now on because I HATE walking up sandy washes.

The canyon could be called Junk Car Canyon but the caves are up higher on the hill.

Some of the "bat caves".

More caves

And yet more.

There are a lot of these little caves and I am tempted to go up and investigate some. I think they could possibly hold lost treasures or Indian artifacts or maybe Pegleg Smith's gold. Of course, they could also hold rattlesnakes or bees so I think I'll pass on further exploration today. It is obvious to me that animals sometimes utilize these caves to sleep.

But the only animals I see any evidence of today are party animals.

I don't know if this is the canyon my neighbor was talking about; I'll have to come up with him sometime. There is plenty to explore here and I'll be back to do so. I'll just have to find out when the bees are hibernating.

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