Hiking South Palm Wash

We found a sweet three mile hike just off Mile 38.8 on S22 in the Anza Borrego Desert State Park, California, the South Palm Wash.  Three trails begin at the same point; the Calcite Mine, Palm Wash Loop, and South Palm Wash.  We chose the latter because it was labeled “moderate” the other two were “Fairly Strenuous” and “Strenuous”.  Our hiking legs are still a bit untrustworthy from non-use during the icy, windy Alaska winter, coupled with my layoff during healing from shoulder surgery we choose easier trails.  Bob is doing very well with two hiking poles, the neuropathy in his feet often leave him feeling unstable and out of balance, the poles are the answer.  I can’t use my right arm yet, so we make a great pair hobbling along slowly.  I often think of the tortoise and the hare when young, able bodied folks speed by us, but we always finish and no doubt see more along the way.

The narrow, twisting canyon with 80′ sandstone walls is very interesting, a few boulders block the way and are easily climbed.  You definitely would not want to be here during a rain, formed by water the canyon experiences flash floods during rainstorms and are something to avoid.  With a moderate 75º and light breeze this was a delightful sojourn.

Gail Niebrugge, Alaska artist

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