A Hike to Borrego Palm Canyon-October 6, 2016

My brother Tom and sister in law Frances, Michael and I went on a mid morning hike to the oasis of Borrego Palm Canyon in Anza Borrego State Park today. It was a beautiful morning with just a slight breeze and not a cloud in the sky. We started out with a temperature of only 79 degrees and ended the hike with it reaching 89. It is not a major hike and most people in moderate health and fitness should be able to finish the round trip of approximately 3 miles with relative ease. You start off winding through and up a sandy wash with ocotillo, sage, desert willow and creosote bordering the trail. The trail is well marked until you reach the last few markers and we ended up helping a couple who had turned around before making it to the fan palm oasis. Michael and I were able to convince them to head back up because they were so close and the end journey so worth it. At marker number 15 you have to veer sharply left in order to cross what little standing water is available after a long hot summer. If you stay to the far left side you can cross over and into the oasis. It is like entering another world and must be so cherished by the sheep and wildlife native to the area. The last time I hiked Borrego Palm Canyon, I was able to literally walk right past a large herd of bighorn sheep. We had taken the alternative route in the spring and today we just stayed on the main trail. There was evidence of recent sheep, but because it was so warm, I am sure they were resting in the shade of distant rocks. The oasis is quite spectacular and you can rest and have a picnic in the shade of these massive skirted palms. My brother lives on Vancouver Island in British Columbia, so the dramatic and stark contrast of the desert in comparison to the lush climate of Canada made for an exciting adventure. I did not hike with my cat Callie today because of my concern for her becoming overheated. The photos below of the bighorn sheep are from the hike I did last spring. 

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