Leaving San Diego: Amboy Crater and Telephone Cove

The time has finally come. I’m headed out of San Diego for however long it takes. I left yesterday morning, taking a scenic drive through San Diego’s desert, and continued on through scenic desert driving all day. I visited the Painted Canyons, Box Canyon, and Joshua Tree National Park before finally arriving at Amboy Crater. After one night there and a morning hike, I passed into Nevada and found a camp in Lake Mead National Recreation Area, at Telephone Cove.

After hitting up Carrizo Badlands Overlook one more time for one night, it was time to head on out of San Diego for a while.

First step: slowly make my way to Las Vegas, where I will need to stop into the DMV to get my new drivers license and license plates, making me officially a resident of Nevada. I chose Nevada for its lack of income tax, although Las Vegas has a somewhat strict emissions control policy on cars that I will have to figure out in the future. Oh well!

The first leg out of San Diego, I wanted to do a special trip through the desert, leaving near the Salton Sea. I stopped to pick up a PCT thru-hiker on my way, but otherwise had a rather uneventful drive for this portion. I stopped briefly at one canyon, but mostly just enjoyed the last drive through that desert that I have called home all winter.

From there, I have been eyeing the Painted Canyons just outside of Mecca, CA for quite some time and decided to make a stop. I was amazed by just how beautiful the area is, and got out to walk along in the canyons for a bit. I didn’t spend too much time, with the long day I had planned, but it was a beautiful area to go through!

Then it was a quick drive through Box Canyon (sorry, no pictures!), which spits out just on the South side of Joshua Tree National Park. I spent some time at Joshua Tree at Thanksgiving, and there was a lot of rain yesterday, so I didn’t want to spend too much time there. Nonetheless, I stopped long enough to take in the views and enjoy some time there. I even stopped in and bought a sticker to dress Tivona with: my first National Park sticker!

With all of the adventure through, it was finally time to make my way to the destination: Amboy Crater! It was a beautiful drive in through desert mountains and dry lake beds. When the crater came into view, it was amazingly obvious, and I was excited.

Unfortunately, the cell service really sucks there for Verizon, and it’s non-existent for TMobile. So I only stayed one night. I did wake up this morning and hike up into the crater before I left, though. That’s something I would definitely recommend!

Alas, after the morning hike, I hit the road. I enjoyed following Old Route 66 most of the way into Nevada: it was fun to be following the historic route for me, and it was beautiful desert country as well.

Finally, I arrived at the Lake Mead Recreation Area. I made a stop in to visit Davis Dam, which was pretty cool, with some interesting history no less. Then I headed up and traveled to Telephone Cove, where I intend to have my home for the rest of the week!

It’s a beautiful spot, right on the edge of Lake Mohave. Sleep to the sounds of the lake’s waves? Hell yeah! I’m looking forward to this spot!

The road in was a dirt, windy road. But even with the recent rains, it wasn’t difficult at all. A pretty easy route in, and I even have some good, reliable and fast 4G LTE signal with Verizon! Wonderful!

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