… if you’re going to san francisco …

We left Arizona yesterday evening and spent the in Joshua Tree National Park. After having to convince Rhet to go, and hearing not so rave reviews from the few people I asked about it, I thought it was really cool. We came in late in the evening and camped near the southern entrance of the park, and spent Friday morning driving up to the northern exit. Neither of us knew exactly what to expect a Joshua tree to look like, and after driving half way through the park I was beginning to feel less than impressed by these weird shrubbish things we were beginning to figure must be “Joshua trees”… and then finally BAM! trees trees trees.

This is a joshua tree

Very strange that we drove through half of the park and did not see one, but a very exciting feeling that those other shrub things along the road were not what this whole National Park was dedicated to. I guess the park was just letting our suspense build, and I guess that is why the main entrance is in the north, not the southern section. After exiting the park, we traveled many miles and were still occasionally seeing Joshua trees off the side of the road, only making it stranger that we literally spotted none in the southern half of the park.  Overall I thought the park was awesome! The slightest change in elevation through the park seemed to put us in a completely different biome, no Joshua trees, then millions of them,

Cholla catus

no cholla catus, then millions of them, disappearing as soon as they arrived on this beautiful stretch of highway.

After leaving the park we headed up to beautiful Bakersfield (yes, I AM using the term ‘beautiful’ very loosely), to visit the Buck Owens Crystal Palace. I guess it is a concert venue that Buck Owens created while he was still alive, and is now a concert venue/museum with a lot of items that have been collected over the year that were his, or donated to him/his museum. I thought the coolest thing there was a car that was located behind the bar. It was originally a gift to Elvis from Nudie, who apparently was a famous tailor to the stars, Elvis lost it in a poker match to Buck Owens, and Buck but it on display at his Crystal Palace. It was pretty awesome car, with guns and horseshoes welded onto it and embroidered seats, ridiculous and awesome.


From Bakersfield we drove up to San Francisco. Came in from the east and got to cross over the Bay Bridge (at 7:01 pm, one minute after the toll price dropped :o). )and the Golden Gate Bridge as well. We hung out in town for a little while, Watched the sunset behind the Golden Gate Bridge, and found somewhere to eat soup out of a bread bowl down by the piers.

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