A lush, but fragile meadow at an altitude of 8,516 feet

The mere mention of the words Palm Springs put images into my mind of palm trees, cool waters, and a relaxing atmosphere. Not! The high for this week calls for 108 every day! Palm Springs is about 30 minutes down the road from where I’m staying in Yucca Valley, CA.

As I was out this way, Bill McDonald, another California blogger and visitor to my blog, and I decided to hook up. At first, we were going to go to the living desert, but decided that the heat might be a bit much. So, Bill suggested that we meet and ride the Palm Springs Tram. This turned out to be a very good idea. We met at 9:00 AM, rode the tram to the top, walked around a bit, took photos, and enjoyed the weather. When we arrived, it was all of 62 degrees. Bill treated me to the tram ride. Thanks, Bill! I appreciate it! One very cool thing about the tram is that the floor of the car rotates as the car ascends/descends. In this way, everyone gets a fantastic view!

The tram takes you from an elevation of about 2,500 ft above sea level, to the top of the mounted, at about 8,500 ft about sea level. Total travel time is about 7 or 8 minutes. Along the way, the operator explains how the tram was built. Workers had to be brought in by helicopter to do their work! Imagine that! The difference in temperature between the top of the mountain and Palm Springs is about 30 – 35 degrees! When we left, it was 68 degrees up top, 100 at the bottom. What a shock!

During our walk around the area, we talked of all manner of things. As Bill used to live in the desert for a while, I quizzed him in all manner of desert life, and no, he has never seen a rattlesnake in the wild! I am happy to say that during my 5 trips to the desert to photograph, the most menacing thing that I was a honeybee! After spending 4 hours together, it was time to go. Bill had to drive back home, to Orange County, about 2 hours away, and I headed back to my hotel room in the cooler climes of Yucca Valley, where it was only 92, compared to Palm Springs’ high of 108!

In this photo, you can see how far up we were. I had to do a bit of work on the photo to allow you to see down the mountain and into the valley because it was extremely hazy. Lots of dust and pollution settles in that valley.

Thankful for National and State Parks
Born under a good sign

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