I will pick you up in La Quinta, and after brief introductions, we will begin driving. About 20 minutes from La Quinta we will reach a dirt road to the trailhead. Here we will take in views of the Mecca Hills, and drive right over the San Andreas Fault and in between the rocks it has uplifted. After about 15 minutes on the dirt road, we will walk into Painted Canyon for a hike through walls of exposed layers of sediment and rocks. The hike is a gradual slope on a flat sandy/rocky riverbed. The sheer size and color contrasts of the layers of rock are amazing to see up close. We will hike for about 1.5 miles each way, with an option to the 2 climb ladders (pictured) through a narrow section of the canyon, though we also turn around here so the ladders are optional. I'll discuss the puzzling geology we see throughout the journey. (Note that if you google the canyon you may see photos of multiple ladders and very narrow passages- this is a more difficult trail called Ladder Canyon which we skip. Safety and accessibility first!) After the hike we will drive 15 minutes through citrus, chili pepper and date palm farms to the community of North Shore, on the Salton Sea. We will be at 226 feet below sea level, one of the ten lowest points on the surface of the Earth. Here we are free to walk around and take in the picturesque views of the desolate sea ringed by mountains.
I am an experienced hiker and explorer and have been traveling through local deserts since I was young. Although I am a Southern California native, I have traveled extensively, and my education matches my interest in the Earth's landscapes: I recently finished my PhD work in urban geography at the University of Helsinki. I also have degrees from the geography departments of UCLA and the London School of Economics. While abroad, I have given lectures about the history and development of Southern California, and have presented at conferences from Portugal to Japan. Recently, I mentored for a course in Tallinn, Estonia about sustainable cities. I am particularly interested in future growth and landscape transformation. I am passionate about geography, desert landscapes, and sunshine. I look forward to sharing this adventure with you!
Cold water and soft drinks will be provided free as needed.
Jaguar X-Type sedan: AWD with all-terrain tires and upgraded suspension to help traverse sandy terrain. Leather interior and…
Painted Canyon is a slot canyon carved by rainfall into the desert landscape, revealing rock layers up to 600 million years old that have been twisted by the movements of the San Andreas Fault. The Salton sea is an enormous lake at 226 feet below sea level
18歳以上の方4名まで参加できます。 Guests should be okay with exposure to sunlight and hiking in sandy conditions up a moderate incline.
Easy to moderate hike over sand and small rocks . Access by dirt road: vehicle is equipped for the conditions, but may vibrate over sections of dirt road. Only bring what you can carry on the hike, as nothing should be left unattended in the car while we are hiking. Climbing of ladders not required.
Painted Canyon hike and Salton Sea beach