Armed with a camera and a .38 revolver, Susie Keef Smith and her cousin, Lula Mae Graves, set out in the 1920s to document the desert outback.
The Chino Canyon cone — the giant boulder field at the base of the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway – is a peaceful area now thanks to Friends of Palm Springs Mountains.
The Cactus to Clouds Trail — a highly social, grueling, and somewhat underground Palm Springs experience, is adored by fitness freaks, CrossFit and boot camp trainees, and even Marines.
When Esquire or The New York Times list features that make Palm Springs sexy and cool, they routinely omit one important item: “Wilderness Boundary.”
On the outskirts of Palm Springs, boasting one of the best mountain views in America, Snow Creek draws artists and eccentrics who must continually protect the village.
Morning in the east valley is a sight to stir the weariest traveler. Yet most visitors miss the pageant, as do locals.
Some of California’s greatest artists once lived in the Coachella Valley. More and more, art lovers are recognizing the power their former homes and environs hold in telling the story of American art.
Leave behind modern Palm Springs and enter the lost world of Cahuillaland. Here, the rocks have names, and tricksters and shapeshifters dart around you. A kind of power — one anthropologist calls it “electricity” — abounds in objects we think of as inanimate.
In the 12 years since the Santa Rosa & San Jacinto Mountains National Monument was founded, technology has tightened its grip on us all. Scientists say many of us can no longer see the flash of a bighorn sheep’s rump, hear the peep of a towhee, or count the receding ridges of the Santa Rosas — not because the rump, towhee, and ridges aren’t there, but because we can no longer perceive them. Tiny screens have stolen our senses. The 280,000 acres of monument just outside Palm Springs is the perfect place to reclaim them.
After absorbing de Forest’s paintings, your eye naturally travels to the desert’s open places, looking not for impressive landmarks, but for the beauty of absence and the nothingness the painter sought.