Desert Wonders

On a recent journey out into the mountain desert area we came upon a number of interesting scenes.

We found an old movie set hotel that has been abandoned.  It was used in a TV pilot that didn’t make it.


It is a full sized building, but is dwarfed by the huge rocks on the hillside.


This is a fairly common sight, a mountain of huge boulders that appear to be put into place by a huge wheel barrow.


This land, in the picture below, looks so much like Afghanistan that the military uses this area for training missions.


There are many formations of rocks that appear to be balanced in a fashion that would seem to defy gravity.




We’ve seen many more examples and will add some new photos when we get some better shots.  Below is a little information on how the balanced rocks are formed.


Further information can be found at the source of this information:

We saw several old stagecoach trails weaving their way through the mountains.  They were quite narrow (5 to 8 feet) and looked very uncomfortable.  The old highway that was replaced by Interstate 8 was not much better.  As you can see by the two photos below, the road was very prone to rock slides.



One of the most amazing feats of construction was the railroad through the mountains.  The railroad trestels and tunnels were built by Chinese workers in the 1800’s.  The section in this area contains the longest trestle in the US. (not shown in photo) The tunnels are up to 7 miles long and were excavated with pickaxe and wheelbarrow. The photo below shows some of the trestles and I have marked a couple of the tunnels.


Laziness and the stupidity of cows.  This photo shows what appears to be your standard cattle guard to prevent the movement of lifestock.


Guess what —  The cattle guard is actually painted stripes on the road.  Apparently it works.


Coming from, relatively flat, Texas, the visit to this area has been an extraordinary experience.

3 Responses to “Desert Wonders”

  1. Sister says:

    How interesting. Very harsh landscape with incredible shapes. Do you remember the similarly large boulders that were on Virgin Gorda? It all looks like it was arranged for the movies and for pictures. Enjoy and have fun on your trip.

  2. Rick and Tinka says:

    Yes, we remember those huge boulders. These rocks also remind me of some of the mountains near Ft. Davis, TX. We feel really small compared to the boulders.

  3. Sister says:

    Based on my experience, if you want people to respond to your blog, you have to give them instructions about how to get on the blog and into the comments section. Most don’t know where to click and don’t see the comments word at the bottom.

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