California – Gorgeous Joshua Tree National Park & Oasis Mara

The traffic out of Los Angeles is incredible – to be honest, just crazy. Imagine a 7 lane highway (one direction) as busy as you can imagine with 1/3rd of the traffic being trucks and rather aggressive driving style! Somehow we manage to get out of LA. Uff. And luckily, traffic improves, the further away we get. We drive thru a typical Californian landscape – dried out landscape with few bushes along the valleys and a few passes to get to Joshua Tree. Happy to see civilization and RV Service. There is also T-Mobile signal in town allowing us to get an appointment since we urgently need to get a break control installed (smoky breaks on the car makes us nervous). Moving on to the National Park we first try to stay at the hidden valley campground. Unfortunate, max. length allowed is 25 feet. The trailer is 17 feet which seems reasonable but together with the Suburban we must be approx. 35 feet and we won’t fit on this campground. We turn around and head to Jumbo Rock Campground – Wow! What a beautiful campground in the middle of the desert – a gorgeous landscape up here and plenty of rocks to climb on! While setting up the trailer, I noticed that the cable from the trailer got completely pinched and needs to get repaired. We must take care of this before heading to the Grand Canyon. Here in Joshua Tree National Park we enjoy the Campground, head to Oasis Mara and do the Arch hike. We all enjoy this beautiful and unique landscape with a variation of Cactus, Joshua trees and the amazing rock formations. It truly is an awesome and unique place to visit! With temperature between 92 and 106 Fahrenheit we drink a lot of water and try to shift our major activities into the morning and evening. We focus on smaller hikes for now and look out for shade to climb, staple rocks and play – just relaxing and enjoying this awesome time together! As usual, Mara and Elin are working on the Junior Ranger Program to get their batches.

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  • Joshua Tree National Park

Week 2 – California (Redwoods)

…We now notice how dependent we became on technology such as mobile phones, internet, … Unfortunately the internet connectivity on the campgrounds is often weak and it is hard to do some research and plan our trip on the go. We also noticed that the coverage of T-Mobile outside of major cities is rather limited which makes it also challenging to make a reservation of a campground by phone. Arriving in Crescent city we briefly stop at the visitor center to check vacancy on campgrounds. Happy to hear that Mill creek has first come, first serve sites that open up at 2.p.m., so we hurry up to grab a site! There is still some time to explore the area in the afternoon as well as for a small hike. We also enjoy our trip along the Howland Hill Road (dirt road) and spend plenty of time hiking and admiring the giant redwood trees that can get up to 2000 years old and reach a diameter of 6m at the button. Happy to discover once in a while a Starbucks coffee to spend some time researching for campgrounds and alerts on the route. We already noticed that campgrounds may already be booked out on weekends and it will become even harder in a few weeks (vacation).

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  • Redwoods – California