Get truly close up to the stars as desert skies turn up the voltage—star voltage, that is. Pile in an open-air hummer and climb high into the off- road backcountry of Joshua Tree or head to Borrego Springs for one of the biggest stargazing events in the desert.
Borrego Springs at Night
Point your car going east through the lush date palm and citrus groves of the Coachella Valley and wind south, turning at the Salton Sea. The road to Borrego Springs twists through a mini Grand Canyon of time-worn sedimentary rock in hues of purple and orange, unfolding in the open desert scape of the spectacular geologic wonder, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park.
Anza-Borrego envelops the small community of Borrego Springs, aptly designated one of only two International Dark Sky Communities in the world. “USA Today” rated Borrego as one of the top ten stargazing locations in the nation. The quiet of the area combined with the dark, star-filled sky make Borrego Springs a top choice for relaxation, especially after dark when the air cools and the dazzling stars come out to play.
Day or night, the surrounding state park with its awe-inspiring vistas and ecological diversity is an exploration paradise of natural and cultural beauty with exotic plants and animals, old stage routes, palm oases and tucked away trails. Stop in the visitor center at the park headquarters in Borrego Springs for a wide range of guided and self-guided programs for discovering the park’s many riches.
Borrego Springs, surrounded by the 650,000-acre Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, is uniquely protected from urban lights. The community, known for lacking even stoplights to pollute the brilliance of its dark, dark nights, has long been a haven for stargazers
“Touch” the Sky on a Sunset Hummer Trip to Joshua Tree
When you board an open-air hummer, there is not much between you and the outside world, and it is your chance to seize the full sensory experience of the sights, sounds and smells of the desert. Going where other tours don’t always go, Adventure Hummer Tours offers a three-hour morning tour and a four-hour sunset tour to the San Andreas Fault and Joshua Tree National Park, both with the thrill of military open-air Hummers that strictly travel on the off-roads.
Sunset Ride to the Stars
Hold onto your hat and prepare to be awed as the sun sets and the stars come out on Adventure Hummer’s Joshua Tree Adventure tour that traverses an old goldmine trail, rising 4,000 feet above the desert floor.
After a visit to the canyons of the San Andreas Fault in the Coachella Valley Preserve pre-sunset, your hummer dares to venture up the difficult-to-traverse Berdoo Canyon, an 1800’s prospector route through mining reminders and wild animal corridors. The trip culminates in a nature walk to a look-out over the Salton Sea from Summit Mountain, 4,250 feet high.
Along with the back-road desert’s beauty, the tour is an educational journey with continuous geological, historical and botanical tidbits. However, the tour’s finale might be the most spectacular part: when the sun goes down, the moon comes out and the constellations guide the way home.