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Photographing South Anza Borrego Desert

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A large number of folks only visit the Anza Borrego desert when the wildflowers bloom. But, if you are a photographer, or just interested in things old, I suggest you go to the southern end of the desert now while it’s cool and not very crowded. (You can go, again, after the wildflowers bloom and fight the crowds.)

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Near the intersection of I-8 and S-2 in Ocotillo, there are: ‘Dos Cabasas’ spring, where big horn sheep can be seen, and the railroad collected water for their steam engines; the ‘Dos Cabasas’ water tower and the remains of old buildings; the ‘Piedras Grandes cultural resource’, which features indian rock art; and, of course, the everlasting beauty of the desert landscape.

I would say there are lots of birds to watch or photograph, but I only saw one on my last trip. It’s my guess that the proliferation of electricity producing wind turbines are killing the birds en mass. (I’d much rather have a power plant in the neighborhood than a forest of those monstrous machines!)

You will, of course, need to take your camera and all your lenses from macro, to telephoto, to wide-angle. But this is not an outing to be undertaken without significant preparation! Some of the roads require four-wheel drive and some sites require a hike to reach them, so do your homework. And, as in any desert trek, always let someone know where you are going and when you expect to be back... and take more water than you think you’ll need... oh, and take more water! (If all you have is the old family sedan, you might try to arrange a ride-along with a four wheeling club.)


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