Member
Your donation supports our high-quality, inspiring and commercial-free programming.
Support Icon
Discover all the ways you can make a difference.
Support Icon
The Leadership, Advancement, Membership and Special Events teams are here to help.

Desert Escapes

Get ahead of the heat and enjoy SoCal desert destinations, from hikes to outdoor art installations.
Support Provided By
Latest
The landscape along the Desert Willow Trail at Big Morongo Canyon.
Article
SoCal Wanderer

Where to Explore the Wonders of the High Desert Beyond Joshua Tree National Park

It's not too late to explore the High Desert this year, but you won't be the only squeezing in a last-minute trip. Here are five lesser-known destinations that offer all the the wonders of the High Desert without the big crowds.
Paul Grimm stands on the side of his painting of Harry Bennett and his horse Sonny.
Article
Artbound

In the Desert, Henry Ford's Strongman Finds His Artist's Heart

From stopping union uprisings for Henry Ford to a desert landscape painter, Harry Bennett wasn’t just a militaristic figure in corporate America but also, strangely, a skilled artist.
The view at the Slot Canyon Overlook.
Article
SoCal Wanderer

Six Easy, Lesser-Known Excursions at Anza-Borrego

There's more to the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park than the wildflower blooms. Avoid the crowds and explore six of Anza-Borrego's lesser-known gems.
Jon Gnagy signs his name on an easel with his back turned to the camera. The profile of his face can be seen and he is wearing a plaid collared shirt.
Article
Artbound

Before Bob Ross: Jon Gnagy Was America's First TV Art Teacher

As America’s first TV artist debuting in 1946, Jon Gnagy was a predecessor to the now-trendy Bob Ross. Hundreds of artists and artists credit him as their inspiration, from New York contemporary artist Allan McCollum to Andy Warhol.
A silver jeep sits on a dirt path with a wide view of Death Valley behind it.
Article
SoCal Wanderer

8 Tips to Exploring SoCal Deserts Without Getting Stuck

Though breathtaking and spectacular, SoCal deserts present a special set of challenges even for the most seasoned traveler. Here are some tips to make sure that your next desert trip is a safe journey.
The landscape at Whitewater Preserve
Article
SoCal Wanderer

Where to Explore the Coachella Valley Outdoors (Before It Gets Too Hot)

Whether you’re an off-roader, a two-legged trekker or even an earthquake tourist, here are five great outdoor destinations in the Coachella Valley — no festival pass needed.
 Agnes Pelton, "Star Gazer," 1929. Oil on canvas. | Collection of Susan and Whitney Ganz
Article
Artbound

The Real World of Transcendentalist Agnes Pelton

Agnes Pelton’s Cat City home is no majestic artist enclave, but unable to drive, she still found her mystic inspirations in her small hometown. Walk in her shoes.
Night's Regent, 2000 | Courtesy of Sharon Ellis
Article
Artbound

No LSD Required: The Electric Landscapes of Sharon Ellis

Sharon Ellis' luminous landscapes draw on nearly the whole history of landscape painting. Think American Luminists, Charles Burchfield and his "animated landscapes" and even Light and Space artists James Turrell and Robert Irwin.
Active loading indicator