Have GPS Will Travel

The LA Times sends their intrepid reporter an hour’s drive away to Joshua Tree NP armed with all the latest gadgets, and he survives.

The Times’ Dan Neil scans the gorgeous, punishing terrain of Joshua Tree National Park, site of his recent solo hiking and camping trip. He was armed with some of the latest in backcountry electronics — the tools of “e-survival,” as he calls it. (Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

Apparently there were 2 people on this trip, the reporter and the photographer.

More from the article:

Going solo into the backcountry — or on a sailboat around Catalina, or on a mountain bike in Moab, Utah, for that matter — always implies a trade-off, the exchange of safety for reverie. Nearly always, the risk is worth it…

Is navigating always about being certain where you are, or is there magic in getting lost and finding your way again, much like life itself?…

Life abounds at Joshua Tree: jumping cholla, candelabra cactus, pinyon and juniper pines, lizards and rabbits and hawks, life everywhere. But it’s all so close to the margin. When a cactus dies in Joshua Tree, it doesn’t just shrivel but suddenly collapses, an ashy skeleton of itself. There are no fat jack rabbits. I take this as an object lesson.

  Cactus and Succulents
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September 2023

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