Outbound - Mojave Road
Sunday, April 15
Leaders: Charles and Mary Hughes
We all met at the Needles Museum at 9:00 a.m. Spent some quality time there, and then left around 9:40 a.m. to start the trip. In the caravan was Danny and Norma Siler, Bruce Barnett. Tommy Perasso and friend Glenda, Jerry and Joni Harada, Debbie and Steve Marschke, and Charles and Mary Hughes.
We drove to the Colorado River to start the trip. Mary had an old photograph from 1903 which showed the water tower, the Superintendent's home, the boat landing which also showed about 15 people standing at the landing. The photo also showed how wide the river was, which was quite amazing to everyone to see. We stayed about 25 minutes, and left to connect with the Mojave Road on Needles Highway. Our first stop was Granite Springs. We spent a lot of time here. This is a spectacular stop, with the petroglyphs, the big horn sheep if you are lucky to see one, the springs, and so much evidence of the Mojave's being here. Our next stop was the Hardyville Road/Mojave Road junction. Mary took some time to talk about William Harrison Hardy, his ferry port and the direction this road takes to the river. This is Mary's favorite spot, and Jerry Harada is going to walk the road with Mary as far as old Hardyville. It's in print, Jerry, you are now committed. Onward we go, cross Hwy. 95, and head up to Ft. Paiute. We go directly to the Fort, have lunch, and then stop at the Fort and make our way up the trail to the wagon ruts. This trail is awesome. You are walking in the steps of the Mojave's et al that came over the Mojave Road. It is an overwhelming hike. When we got to the ruts, and you look down toward the river, you think of all the people who came over the road, Garcés, Smith, Beale, Military, our own Emmett Harder's grandmother went west over the Mojave Road in the middle 1800's. It is a very emotional place to be.
We made a brief stop at Irwin’s turkey ranch as time was running late and some were heading to LA. We hit Highway 95 at 4:00 p.m., said our goodbyes and headed home. We all agreed that it was a great trip and no matter how many times you travel over the Mojave Road it is always a very moving place to visit. Charles and Mary thank everyone who came on our trip and made it such a great day.