DesertUSA is a guide to the American Southwest. Our stories feature topics ranging from rockhounding and boating to desert parks and unique points of interest.  DesertUSA’s content includes in depth information about the natural history of the desert regions of the United States.

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The Town Too Tough to Die

Tombstone, Arizona is often called the most famous of Arizona’s old mining camps. Its rich and colorful history began when the southeast region of Arizona was acquired from Mexico by the Gadsden Purchase on December 30, 1853. Ed Schieffelin arrived at Camp Huachuca in 1877 and as he wandered off to prospect nearby, his comrades told him he would find his tombstone before finding silver. When Ed staked his first claim, he named it “Tombstone.”  Read more …

The Pumpkin Patch

The Pumpkin Patch

Globular Sandstone Concretions

Desert Magazine first published an article about the Pumpkin Patch in 1970, showing a black and white picture of its concretions. After this wonderful photo by David Muench appeared in the January 1981 edition of Desert Magazine, it became a major attraction. Read more…

Death Valley

Tales of Survival
in Death Valley

Shorty Borden’s Brushes with Death

Death Valley is a land of extremes by any measure. Frying pan heat. Lack of water. Storms of salty dust. A foreboding environment for men. Well, most men. Every now and then someone falls in love with the desert and decides to stay. That’s what Alexander Zachariah Borden did. Read more…

The Pumpkin Patch

Exploring Desert Roads

Dreaming of a Road Trip?

When you’re planning to explore the desert from the comfort of your car, where to go and what to see is always the big question. DesertUSA staff and our writers have traveled all over the deserts of the southwest and California. We’ve made a list of our top places to visit. Read more…


DesertUSA Bloggers

A Passion for the Rails
Shutterbug Blog

Photographers are a particularly passionate group of people. Some folks like to photograph wildlife. Others prefer landscapes or wildflowers. And then there is this bunch that are totally nuts about photographing trains: Big trains, little trains, bells and whistles, axles and wheels. Continue reading a Passion for the Rails by Lara Hartley.


Experience Ocotillo Wells SVRA in a Polaris RZR
Desert Road Trippin’ Blog
On a recent day trip to Ocotillo Wells State Vehicular Recreation Area (SVRA), I had the opportunity to go off-roading in a Polaris RZR.   I’d visited the area many times,  but I’d never explored it in an off–highway vehicle. Motorcycles and ATVs seemed a little overwhelming to me. That all changed when I learned about the Polaris RZR, a 4-passenger, off-highway vehicle that’s automatic and easy to drive. Read more.

South Park Trail – Yucca Valley, CA
Mojo on the Mojave Blog
South Park Trail boarders Joshua Tree National Park. South Park is wonderful because you can take your dog or your horse on a half mile loop trail to the South Park Peak.  The trail rises to a prominent 4,395 foot hill at the north edge of the Little San Bernardino Mountains, just outside the northwest corner of Joshua Tree National Park. Read more about South Park Trail.

Fun Kids’ Activity

If you are looking for a fun activity to do with your kids, check out our “Break-at-Home” geode kits. This hands on rockhounding experience is a fun way for kids to learn about geology, how geodes are formed and the excitement of discovery when they break one open.  Learn more about “Break-at-Home” geodes.

Mojave Road Guide

An adventure through time. Explore the route used by pioneers on their way to California. The Mojave Road lets your SUV act as a time machine, guiding you on a trail that stretches for 138 miles through country virtually unchanged since prehistoric times.  Learn more about the Mojave Road Guide by Dennis Casebier.

Prickly Pear Drink Recipes

DesertUSA has received so many requests for Prickly Pear recipes and ingredients that we have decided to stock our store with Prickly Pear Syrup, nectar and related products.

Prickly Pear Drink Recipes & Prickly Pear Syrup Products
Buy Prickly Pear Syrup 35 oz on DesertUSA’s Amazon Store.
Buy Prickly Pear Syrup 1 Gallon on DesertUSA’s Amazon Store.