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TRAVEL GUIDE

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Destination Guide

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Popular Destination in Southern California

LOW DESERT

Cities

With its searing temperatures, soaring mountains, and a landlocked sea almost 230 feet below sea level, the low desert, which encompasses the Coachella Valley and Salton Basin, remains a place of baffling, exciting incongruities. On one hand, humans have made every effort to turn much of the long, level valley's sand and rock into a vast necklace of emerald green golf courses surrounded by resorts and new residential colonies. Despite this, nature continues to hold the winning hand here and do what she pleases. Flash floods roar off the mountain flanks and tumble through washes that otherwise might stay bone-dry for years. Dead-calm mornings turn into afternoons riven by moaning winds, often powerful enough to knock a bejeweled Palm Desert matron right out of her stiletto heels. In geologic nomenclature, the entire area is called the Salton Basin, the Salton Trough, or sometimes the Salton Sink. It stretches from San Gorgonio Pass near Palm Springs to the Salton Sea and beyond, fanning out over the U.S.-Mexico border and eventually disappearing into the Gulf of California. Although these low-down names may sound clumsy, they aptly describe an entire region that was lowered (in some places as much as 230 feet below sea level) over millions of years by earth movement along the San Andreas fault. Simultaneously, the San Andreas helped lift the Sink's adjacent mountains to 10,000 feet or more. Snow capped in winter, these ranges, the San Jacinto and San Gorgonio, tower
over the region like an Alps on Mars. Jumbled and hostile, they rise along the south side of Highway 111 in Palm Springs, Rancho Mirage, Palm Desert, and Indian Wells. Once you climb above about 5,000 feet, the summits soften under a cloak of pine and fir trees. Palm Springs' famed tramway whisks you from the valley floor into this forest, where the air is far cooler and the desert seems a continent away rather than a few miles below. Even with this cool escape, and enough air-conditioning in every car and building to frost your earlobes, the valley clears out from June through September, as 110-degrees-plus temperatures become breath takingly common. Naturally, the desert's heat is also why everyone loves the Big Sink, especially in The Season (winter and spring), when days stay in the 70s but nights are chilly enough for you to light a fire in your resort cottage's living room. Golf is nearly perfect here in winter, and almost a hundred courses now dot the landscape. Tennis, too: you can hear the racquet-on- ball thwocks emanating from every hotel and country-club grounds. Swimming pools, considered by tourists and residents alike to be an essential element of existence, host the bronzed, the bored, and the beautiful. No trip to the Low Desert can be complete without a taste of all worlds, from the wilderness of a hidden palm canyon to the glitzy shopping gulch known as El Paseo in the city of Palm Desert. Visitors can golf in the morning, take a Jeep trek in the afternoon, and then savor fine Frend cuisine by candlelight in an open courtyard in the evening. Nothing is improbable.
The valley first gained fame in the early 1900s as a sanitarium for wheezing asthmatics and tuberculosis victims who made their way here on doctors' orders to breathe the clean, dry air. The Hollywood set arrived in the 1920s and never really left. Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and
Sammy Davis Jr. enlivened the 1950s and 1960s. Busts followed booms, but through it all the mountains watched in purple majesty. And the air well, the air here, warm and dry as sable, just feels so very, very good.


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Shopping Mall : Travel guaranteed lowest hotel rate - the cheapest hotels rates, motel, resort, car rental, vacation rentals, cheap air fare airline ticket, travel and cruise.

Travel Category: Hotels, Hotel Reservation, Travel, Last Minute Travel, Car Rental, Airline Ticket, Vacation Package, Cruise, Vacation Rentals

Site Description: Discount Travel Reservation offers online discount travel reservation and last minute travel for hotel, motel, and resorts, air travel, car rental , cruise, vacation rental. Compare guaranteed lowest hotel rates from Marriott, Hilton, Best Western, Radisson, Hyatt, Sheraton, Westin Hotels, Travelodge, Motel 6, and more from Las Vegas, New York City, Paris, London, New Orleans, Orlando, San Francisco, and other cities.

Travel Topics: discount hotels, hotel discount, hotel discounts, discount hotel, hotel reservations, hotel reservation, hotels, motels, cruise, discount car rental, car rental, car rentals, discount rental car, rental cars, last minute travel, vacation rentals