Our destination today is the Salton Sea.
Hey, I figure everyone should smell the Salton Sea at least once in their lifetime. My expectations may be lower than usual, but I’m still happy to be on the road again with my crew.
From the south entrance of Joshua Tree, the crew and I travel Interstate 10 to Indio where we turn onto Highways 86S and 111 to go southward through Coachella Valley. We pass by rows of date palms, lemon trees, grape vines, and green vegetables which I’m guessing is lettuce.
Bridget, Spike, and I hurry down toward the water.
The sea is a pleasure to see in spite of this being a dark, cloudy day.
The state park campground is a parking lot with hook-ups. It costs $20 ($18 with senior pass).
I pack up the crew and we head out.
My anticipation grows as we turn into Salt Creek Primitive Area. First thing we come upon is a self-pay station. Darn! Fee: $10 regular, $8 with senior pass.
Then the sea comes into view like a blue-grey mirage.
I set us up near a picnic table with our door seaside. While the crew explore, I look around. What’s so bad about this? I like this! There’s a slight smell which is stronger by the water. Fortunately the gravel area for camping is far enough away from the water to make the smell not a problem, at least this time of year.
Yay! I’m connected! I hop online. I reply to comments. I’m happy, happy, happy. Then I’m hit with a terrible odor.
Oh no, the Salton Sea Stinkies have arrived! Just when I thought this place was going to be a great camp! I don’t wanna’ move now.
I look down at Spike who’s leaning up against me.
“Spike! What have you done!” I exclaim. Spike jumps off the bed and runs outside. I follow him out. “Oh for heaven’s sake, Spike. Look at you! You’re a mess!”
I scramble around for the dog shampoo, washcloths, a towel and a wash tub. I pour out one of my gallon jugs of water into the tub. Spike stands at attention with his green ring-around-the-terrier.
I have to laugh. “Spike, with you, it’s always something!”
Bridget, Spike and I walk up where the birds are clustered together at the shoreline. There must be hundreds of them!
Pelicans, gulls, herons, and smaller water birds. We don’t get close enough for photos. I don’t want to disturb them.
Later, as the day darkens, the three of us watch a light show in the clouds.
As the sun sets behind the mountains on the far shore of the sea, gold glimmers across the dark, silken water.