“Gunsmoke Night” in the Mojave Desert


Beginning on September 10, 1955, and continuing for more than 600 episodes over the next twenty years, the television show Gunsmoke ruled the airwaves.  Jump ahead 56 years, local author Ben Costello will be joined with author/film historian Julie Ann Ream for “GUNSMOKE NIGHT”.  This event will be a tribute to the legendary western TV show.  It will be […]


Rock Piles

Cairn in Valley of Fire

Some folks say the Mojave Desert is just a bunch of rocks – a “gravel pit.”  While other deserts around the world seem to be made of pure sand, those in the American Southwest are a bit rockier.  Sand dunes exist, only in sparse locales.  The huge monolithic structures that stand out so strikingly from […]


The Story of Two Inconspicuous Giants

The Author With His Dog Inside King Clone (Inset: King Clone From Above)

Imagine the Mojave Desert nearly 12,000 years ago.  It was a wetter place but the Ice Age was just coming to an end and many animals were becoming extinct.  Mammoths, mastadons, saber tooth cats, giant ground sloths and other animals would soon be wiped off of the face of the earth.  At this time one small […]


Signs of Spring

gladiolus byzantinus

Mojave Max, the desert tortoise, emerged from his burrow on March 29, so it must be spring.  Granted that the spring arrival is a little late this year due to lingering cool temperatures, still it is welcomed with no less enthusiasm.  Max’s girlfriends emerged a few weeks earlier, but Max has the official word.  Mojave […]


Paleface, My Fine Feathered Friend


The day that our paths crossed I was quite surprised, immediately Paleface stood out among the crowd, I tried to befriend him but he kept a safe distance from me.  He would come around the barn to scavenge the left over food from our burros and goats.  Was he here as an omen?  If he was then […]


The Gift that Keeps Giving

leading a hike

All I want for Christmas is to get outside…
Giving your kids the gift of the great outdoors is one of the best intangible gifts around.


A Picture and No Story


Anza-Borrego Desert State Park has so much to offer as long as you look.  I wanted to post this picture to share it with the other Anza-Borrego explorers on the site.  However,  because desertusa.com is not just some photo posting site (not that there is anything wrong with having a flickr photostream), I felt an obligation to have […]


Early Las Vegas Memories


Sometimes business can turn into pleasure which was the case for me when I conducted some personal business with Helen Holloway and her son Jason.  Helen was born in 1920 and is currently 90 years old.  She was born Helen Blanding, daughter of Harry and Irene Blanding of Las Vegas, Nevada.  Las Vegas is slightly […]


Looking for Lizards

Common chuckwalla

If you’re looking for an activity to do in the desert heat, try lizard watching. There are plenty of species to discover in the Mojave in southern Nevada.


Cactus Wrangling


The wild west still has its wranglers. Cactus wranglers are the bane of today, stealing and destroying specimen cactus throughout the desert southwest. But new technology is helping to rope in some of these modern-day poachers.


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