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Dad visits! Camping and Biking in Anza Borrego State Park

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Ever since I was little I have thought of my dad (above) as a pretty cool dude – always surfing, running, living somewhere new and exotic, ready to roll wherever the waves took him. Now that I’m all grown up, nothing much has changed, except for the fact that now I get to take him my adventures 🙂

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Since moving to California we have been lucky enough to have my dad visit each year, so we’ve come up with the brilliant plan of using this as the perfect opportunity to escape the routine of civilization and immerse ourselves in the incredibleness that is the outdoors. By doing so, my dad, Mr. Adventure and I have created a happy little tradition in which we get to know each other not only as a family, but as true friends:

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From skiing the slopes of Mammoth:

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mammoth mountain, how high is mammoth mountain, family social vacations To making snow angels in our bathing suits!:

mammoth mountain, how high is mammoth mountain, family social vacations To wine tasting/visiting with llamas in Santa Barbara!:

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It’s always something new and exciting with him. So this past weekend, when he was in town again, we decided to take him on a new kind of adventure, camping in the deserts of Anza Borreggo State Park (map):

anza borreggo, camping in anza borrego state park, fish creek anza borrego, camping, mr and mrs adventure Our goal for this trip was to go camping with my dad for the first time (ever!) and take him mountain biking through one of our favorite areas to bike in Cali, Laguna Meadows. So, we picked him up in San Diego and headed over to The Bike Revolution in the Gaslamp to get him a set of wheels. Tip: Get there early, the good bikes are the first ones to go!

Once we had gear for dad, we picked up fuel for the bod at Trader Joe’s and fuel for the car in the small, small town of Julian, where we met a interesting fellow named Pablo, see below:

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Once we arrived to the sands of Anza Borrego, we set out to find the perfect camping spot. We had read online that Fish Creek was the place to go for the best free, primitive camping as it provides “facilities,” and most importantly, fire rings, which were a definite MUST for my dad’s first camp-out with us.

Once we chose our epic spot, we enjoyed our lunch and decided to try and “mountain bike” through the desert sands of Fish Creek Wash…

anza borreggo, camping in anza borrego state park, fish creek anza borrego, camping, mr and mrs adventure, biking anza borrego We soon realized that what we were doing through this soft, quicksand-filled land wasn’t actually biking at all, it was something we like to call “sludging.”

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Luckily there were nifty little nooks to rest our burning thighs in:

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And other nooks where dad could pretend he was surfing (check out the video at the end of the post):

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Just about everyone rolling through in their off-road vehicles stared at us as if we were absolutely nuts for trying to bike there, which we gladly understood we were:

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anza borreggo, camping in anza borrego state park, fish creek anza borrego, camping, mr and mrs adventure, biking anza borrego

We made it back before sundown only to realize that we still didn’t have any wood or beverages for the night! So, we set out on a mission. Making a left on the road outside of the campground, we drove to the only open place in this dusty town, the “Iron Door,” (map) which, ironically, had a wooden door:

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We walked in, sat down and pretty much got stared at the whole time. Can you spot the stuffed cat stapled to the wall?:

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We made friends with the bartender who happened to know Joe, the great bearer of wood around these here parts. Joe, who we later found out was nearly blind (which explains why he kept asking my dad if any cars were coming as he was driving), scooped Drew and my dad up in his teal golf cart and took them to his yard. I was a bit concerned at first but Joe seemed harmless enough, and a few minutes later, they came scooting around the bend with more wood than we knew what to do with:

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We headed back with the goods, admiring the golden, setting sun along the way:

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We told him he was holding the sun in this shot lol:

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We returned to a velvety,  star blanketed sky, with the full moon hanging over head, surrounded by the glow of our perfect little fire. Drew, newly addicted to enhancing his photography skills, snapped this timeless shot of dad and I having a moment:

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anza borrego state park, camping fish creek, full moon, night sky, desert camping, moon photoNeedless to say, we had an unforgettable time and were well rested for our full day of mountain biking in Laguna Meadows the next day.

Here is a bonus must watch video of dad catching a desert wave for your entertainment.

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