Anza-Borrego Desert: Diablo Dieguenos Loop
|10.2 mile (return) - 4 Hour, 45 minutes (return trip). Easy/Moderate.
|690 - 1110 feet
|Exit Palm Spring, you need some ground clearance. Sometimes soft sand, so drive carefully if you don't have an AWD. May be difficult after rain.
A nice loop in the Dieguenos wash.
The GPS only route goes counterclockwise and is completely easy except for some rocks just before the mesa at the "up" point.
You can skip the side trip to the Aster fork, a route that looked perfect except for a steep dry drop of 30 feet.
This is probably one of the better places to see the "rare" Borrego Desert plant: Orcutt's woody aster, Xylorhiza orcuttii, you should see hundreds of them along the loop.
The GPX download includes two shorter alternative routes.
A1 is a loop in the lower half.
A2 a loop in the upper half, passing the first parking and taking the Diablo DropOff road (3 1/2 hour).
How to get here:
The easiest route is to take the Palm Spring exit and drive the Vallecito Wash.
Some sand, so drive carefully if you don't have AWD.
Some ground clearance is recommended and AWD is much safer in the sand.
After 5.8 miles, take the northbound exit marked Arroyo Seco del Diablo.
This canyon has rather steep walls, but is relatively easy to drive, with firm sand and hardly any rocks.
You will need a little more ground clearance.
However, it can be a different story after rain, you can get stuck in the mud.
The canyon walls often collapse and cover part of the "road" and this can happen before you get back.
Don't miss the spring, you should see a lot of white (salt) and probably water.
Be sure to park safely, away from the walls.
The Great Overland Route may look nice on the map, and it is for the first mile or so.
After that the sand is very deep, we barely made it.
The sand is only a short stretch, but really deep.
The South Carrizo Creek is also a good road. But you need more clearance and it can be very muddy after rain.
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