Telescope Sneak Peak From I-15 Near Baker, CA

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Death Valley Dazed
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Telescope Sneak Peak From I-15 Near Baker, CA

Post by Death Valley Dazed » Tue Mar 03, 2020 9:53 am

Last week while driving from Utah to Southern California with my daughter and grandkids I was lucky enough to be a passenger rather than the usual driver and noticed way off in the distance north of the freeway just east of Baker, CA that I could see the tip of Telescope Peak. I wondered if anyone else had ever noticed this observation. The gray cloud cover made the sighting bland in contrast but still detectable so I decided to make a note of it and return to check it out further and photograph it. Sadly, upon returning a few days later the gray cloud cover once again blanketed the scene. BTW, on a clear day when one stands atop Telescope Peak and looks south on the horizon lays Mount San Gorgonio, the tallest peak in Southern California in whose shadow I grew up as a kid in San Bernardino County. (Which happens to be the largest county in the southern 48 states. Mostly desert.)

While returning I took a short but fascinating detour to the Zzyzx Desert Studies Center which is shown in this video towards the end as it sits on the western edge of that large dry lake bed south of Baker, CA. I've driven by that Zzyzx exit for my entire life and never took the time to explore the area and am so glad that I finally did. There is a video coming that highlights my visit there.

Zzyzx (/ˈzaɪzɪks/ ZY-ziks), formerly Soda Springs, is an unincorporated community in San Bernardino County, California, within the boundaries of the Mojave National Preserve. It is the former site of the Zzyzx Mineral Springs and Health Spa and now the site of the Desert Studies Center. The site is also the location of Lake Tuendae, originally part of the spa, and now a refuge habitat of the endangered Mohave tui chub.

Interstate 15 exit sign for Zzyzx Road is a 4.5-mile-long (7.2 km), partly paved and part dirt, rural collector road in the Mojave Desert. It runs from Interstate 15 generally south to the Zzyzx settlement.

On the I-15 Freeway about two miles east of Baker, CA looking north into the V-shape dip on the horizon one can detect the tip of Telescope Peak inside Death Valley National Park. Drive back to Baker, then turn north onto Highway 127 and enjoy more views of Telescope Peak as it looms larger on the horizon.

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Daw89446
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Re: Telescope Sneak Peak From I-15 Near Baker, CA

Post by Daw89446 » Tue Mar 03, 2020 9:50 pm

You grew up in the shadow of San Gorgonio. Sunrise side or sunset? ;-)

I climbed San Gorgonio back in the mid 1970s. I lived in Big Bear Lake then. I was born and raised on the desert slope below Big Bear, so I couldn’t see Gorgonio except when driving in to Big Bear. Before I got my driver’s license, I explored every cow trail between the desert slope and Big Bear Lake. Between 1988 and 2016, my parents lived on the sunset side of Gorgonio near Joshua Tree.

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Candace_66
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Re: Telescope Sneak Peak From I-15 Near Baker, CA

Post by Candace_66 » Sat Mar 07, 2020 12:50 pm

Ooh, I grew up in Highland, CA. I think you could also say that's in the shadow of Mount San Gorgonio! ;-)

However, I didn't manage to finally climb it until just a few years ago, LOL.

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