Trees, that is. The Joshua Tree can only be found in the southwestern United States (Arizona, California, New Mexico, and a tiny bit of Utah). And since we are here for only a few more weeks and this is the time when flowers are produced, we decided to take a day trip – the journey for Joshua – on Sunday March 17.
After the excitement of finding beautiful yellow poppies in abundance moments from where we live, we couldn’t wait to hit the road and find these talked about trees, flowering white creamy petals. The drive from Scottsdale to the “Tres Alamos Wilderness” is a mere 100 miles or so, easily done in a day. The directions seemed easy enough, drive up Rt. 93 and take a left onto “Alamo Road.” Except, Alamo Road has no sign. Alamo Road barely looks like a road. We blew by Alamo Road driving up 93. We passed some Joshua Trees, then a grove of them. They were everywhere. Then, in two blinks of an eye, they were gone. We turned around and stopped at a pull-off for a quick lunch (no, there is now restaurant there or anywhere near there).
I was intent on going to the wilderness as it is known for copious amounts of Joshua Trees, some with incredible flowers. We decided to drive down 93 looking for the elusive “Alamo Road.” I pulled out my iPhone and entered the Maps app. Unfortunately our signal was quite weak, and the dreaded “edge” network. After many minutes, the map appeared and there it was – Alamo Road. We slowed down, so slow that there became many angry drivers behind us. But, we were committed. Or, shall I say, I was committed to finding this road and all those luscious trees. After a few miles, we finally found it. And to our chagrin, it was a dirt road. Normally this wouldn’t bother us. However, we are driving an Audi A4 with absolutely NO clearance. We drove down the road no more than ½ mile and came across a gulch that would unnerve an off-roader.
What did we do? We turned around, stopped for a few moments and for a few shots of a lone Joshua Tree or two. Then, back to the main road and back to the grove of Joshua Trees. We parked at that turn-off, passed through the wire fence, and then into the wilderness. It turns out that what looks like a grove of trees from afar is really a sparse distribution of trees. I guess each tree must stake out its territory where no other trees are aloud. The downside is uninteresting photos. The upside is, well, there is no upside.
Overall we were a bit disappointed in our journey for Joshua. The flowers were passed peak, the area not very interesting, and drivers a bit crazy. Enjoy the photos.