California |San Diego & Joshua Tree

From Sedona it was an easy and beautiful seven hour drive to the Pacific Ocean and San Diego (the furthest point of our winter road trip). Cool breezy days were relaxing next to the sounds of the ocean waves. It was nice to just chill for a few days.

Paragliders at Torrey Pines Gliderport

Watching paragliders run and fly off the cliffs at Torrey Pines Gliderport is breathtaking.

Sea Lions, Seals, Pelicans & Squirrels

Any kind of photography is fun, but I really do love people and animals the most. I could sit for hours watching and photographing these entertaining animals in La Jolla Cove!

Joshua Tree

From San Diego it was time to reverse our road trip and start the journey back toward Michigan. But we still had plenty of fun stops planned along the way. Our first stop heading back home was Joshua Tree National Park.

Joshua trees grow primarily in the Mojave Desert. They were named by a group of Mormon settlers who crossed the Mojave Desert in the mid-19th century. The tree’s unique shape reminded them of a Biblical story in which Joshua reaches his hands up to the sky in prayer. The Joshua Tree is also referred to as the “tree of life” because of how intertwined it is with desert life.

Hiking the Joshua Tree National Park is a unique experience as you weave through boulders and sometimes spot rock climbers way at the top.

Barker Dam

While hiking through the boulders at Joshua Tree National Park we came upon what felt like an oasis in the middle of the desert. Barker Dam was constructed by early cattlemen in 1900 and now is a beautiful spot in the middle of the desert, a haven for birds and wildlife.


To complete our Joshua Tree experience we spent the night in an Airstream rented through Airbnb. It was a perfect evening complete with dinner at the Joshua Tree Saloon and relaxing under the wide open night sky.

The roosters woke me early the next morning. I think they were telling me to hurry out and see the sunrise. It was incredible to watch as the sky turned different shades of pink, yellow and blue behind the Joshua Trees. It looked like a Dr. Seuss wonderland. There was even an outdoor platform for morning yoga with a view of Bear Mountain from the desert landscape – so cool!

Desert (deserted) Drive

Leaving California and heading toward Arizona was a long, desert drive. Image you are driving through the desert, you haven’t had coffee, you need to go potty and the sign says no service areas for 90 miles. Is that a reason to use the call box? Next stop Grand Canyon!

Traverse City Photographer/Cathy Fitz Photography
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    Cathy Fitz Photography





    Wedding & Lifestyle Photographer