Rainbow Basin Natural Area

April 26, 2015 at 9:09 am (Bird photography, California, Mojave Desert, Nature, Nature photography, Photography, Wildflowers, Wildlife)

Rainbow Basin Natural Area, Barstow, California

Rainbow Basin Natural Area, Barstow, California

The photos may not show it as well as the eye sees it, but there really are green rocks in them thar hills.  Rainbow Basin Natural Area is a gem of a place in the Mojave Desert, just north of Barstow, California.


The last hour of the day is a marvelous time to visit.  In late winter/early spring you can see desert tortoises, wildflowers, and a Joshua tree or two in bloom.

Desert Tortoise

Desert Tortoise

Despite California’s headline-making drought, little dabs of color dot the ground – Mojave aster, prince’s plume, and hedgehog cactus among others.

Hedgehog cactus flower

Hedgehog cactus flower

A one-way drive takes you through some of the more interesting formations and vivid colors, but gets narrow and RVs and trailers are not recommended.  The formation below looks like some stegosauruses got caught in a mudflow. There may not be dinosaur bones here, but fossils from ancient mammals have been found.



Rocks of many colors are found on the Owl Canyon trail.


While we didn’t see any owls, we did see a couple of juvenile rock wrens.

Juvenile rock wren

Juvenile rock wren

We didn’t go too far down the trail as we encountered some boulders in the path and didn’t feel like doing a scramble.  We were rewarded, however, with the sight of two desert tortoises.


Enjoy the early evening views of and from Rainbow Basin:









Feel free to reblog or share

Website:  CindyMcIntyre.com

Online gallery:  Smugmug and Fine Art America

These photographs available here

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Contact:  cindy at cindymcintyre.com


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