The best laid plans are often subject to the weather. I had planned on hiking the one-mile loop trail to Heart Lake in Mammoth, and also to wander around the remaining buildings of the Mammoth Consolidated Gold Mine which are right near by. It snowed the day prior to my arrival, but I was still able to make it to the Coldwater campground parking lot which also served as the trailhead to both of the places I wanted to visit. Fortunately, the old buildings from the mining camp are located quite close to the parking area, so I was able to visit those without too much difficulty. And while I did attempt the trail to the lake, the snow on the ground effectively hid the trail (and it was cold!); that hike will have to wait for another day.
The Mojave Desert
The Mojave is a desert of wind, temperature extremes, Joshua Trees and solitude. When most people hear the word ‘desert,’ images of tumbleweeds, rattlesnakes and bleak desolation typically come to mind. In reality, the Mojave is anything but a wasteland. Amongst the sand and sagebrush lie many places of beauty and wonder, and of historic importance. Some are the result of time and the elements, some are the result of man and his efforts to live in the Mojave, both in recent and prehistoric times. Let’s go see what we can find.