Article & Research by Allison Garton:
Across the parking lot from the Desert View Tower is a jumbled mass of boulders just aching to be scrambled. Random faces and animals are waiting to greet you at every turn. Certainly not easy for the claustrophobic. Boulder Park has been a fixture in the desert since the early 1930s. W.T. Ratcliff, an out-of-work engineer, carved into the granite during the Great Depression for a reported $1 a day… in desert temperatures. Ouch.
The wind can get a little brisk from the top, but the view is almost as high as the Tower’s view. Don’t miss the hillside climb to the mountain springs, where the view is even higher. How invigorating!
Personal Experience: This park is on the same property and literally right next to the Desert Tower. All of Jacumba is filled with rock caves, but this area just makes it easier to explore some of them. You will discover a lot of interesting things during your journey here. Keep your eyes peeled for the guinea hens too! Hike to the “spring” if it’s not too hot. You will see signs for it. It’ll make you chuckle, unless it’s too hot out, then you might just be pissed off. The people out here are great, talented and obviously have a sense of humor. One gets the feeling that there are a LOT of hidden gems in this area. You could spend days exploring. Camp out in if you can and go stargazing. Let us know what you find!
This area is the perfect place to escape the congestion of the city–just don’t go in the summer unless you like it HOT! I recommend going in late fall to early spring. Check the weather map to be safe.
A guinea hen!
The last time I came out here the owners were on vacation and nobody was here but us and the dogs! The dogs wandered all of Boulder Park with us, giving us a tour of their land. It was magical. 🙂
Let’s hike to the spring! Shall we?
We came across an old cistern along the way:
We excitedly made our way up the hill, hoping to find running water. There was no water, but we did find the springs: