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“Everybody talks about destinations. I write about the journey.”

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Latest from the Joyride Guru

Backcountry beautiful; no desert trip needed

Our backcountry has exploded in color, so there’s no need to go to the desert to see beautiful flowers and green mountains. Drive to Sunrise Highway, Old Highway 80, Palomar, Rancho Santa Fe, Cuyamaca, Julian and Couser Canyon where you’ll see flowers ranging from the California Poppy to Wild Mustard (reportedly scattered by the Spanish explorers to mark their route four centuries ago).

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Try Blair, Little Blair valleys for flowers

Although I haven’t seen any reports yet, the Blair valleys south of Borrego Springs might be a good place to look for flowers — and avoid “flowergeddon.” The roads — especially the Montezuma Valley Road (Highway S-22) route — have been clogged as it seems all of Southern California is heading out to see what’s being called a “super bloom.”

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Old Highway 80 The well-preserved former U.S. 80 in eastern San Diego County has all the charms of driving on an old country highway. It's Chapter 1 in Joyrides Around San Diego.
Blair Valley Take an easy, off-pavement drive on the western edge of the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. It's good for off-road novices with all-wheel-drive vehicles. Discover beautiful desert vistas, history and have fun all in a couple of hours from San Diego. Chapter 9 in Joyrides Around San Diego.