Desert Trip #1 was great, but I was stuck in the middle of nowhere, at my hotel in Indio. My good friend Jim had taken me from Los Angeles to Indio, but with the first of two concert week-ends being over, I was loking for a nicer place to stay for the coming week. It seemed like Palm Springs was the place to be, and I planned for the Days Inn hotel, they had cheap rooms with balconies, and the mountains were right next to the city center.
Taxi to Palm Springs cost 100 dollars they said, and a shared ride cost $20. When walking in the desert streets I noticed there was a bus, and my plans were to take the bus to Palm Springs. I planned carefully where to walk, where to board, where the Days Inn was located in Palm Springs, and at checkout time noon I was on my way with my backpack. It took 40 minutes to the bus stop, and another 15 minutes until the bus arrived. I took the “Highway 111 bus” to Palm Springs. The driver said it would cost med 50 cent, because I am a “senior citizen above 60 years of age. How great, well I am not ready for being a senior yet… The bus took one hour fortyfive minutes. We passed by most of the cities in the Coachella valley, including Indio, La Quinta, Indian Wells, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, Cathedral City, and eventually Palm Springs. I love to take the local bus, because it is going with a slow pace. People enter and leave. People in wheelchair enter, the seats in the front are rearranged to make space, this happened several times during the trip, and everyone is friendly. Life is so different in a bus than what happens if you are in a car on the highway or on the Interstate.
The walk from the selected bus stop – also the end stop – to the Days Inn was ten minutes. I asked about vacant rooms and they had a great room with a view to the pool, garden and most important a great view to to the impressive San Jacinto Mountains. That was the main reason for going to Palm Springs. I wanted to go into the mountains during the week-days before the Desert Trip week-end #2.
I walked the mile (1,6 km) up to the tourist information, and there I found out there was an uphill mountain race next week, on Saturday Oct 22. I would be in Las Vegas then, but I would try to do the uphill race on my own this week.
The stay in Palm Springs was great. Everything was close. The next day I walked for hours, and saw most of the city. Then Wednesday and Friday I did the 6k uphill race two times, it is a 10% ascent hill on the tramway road, great hill, I was running in the morning at 7am, just at sunrise, when the temperature was 19 C (66 F). During the afternoon the temperature in Palm Springs was more like 34 C in the shade (93 F), so it was important to run while the temperature was still low and nice.
With so many friends on tour and in contact over the years, I got in touch with Matt and Andrea from Orange County in the Los Angeles area. They were kind enough to let me drive with them to the Desert Trip #2. If you don’t have a car then Desert Trip is really a challenge, so it was so great to have friends that could help me out with the travel logistics.
For Desert Trip #2 I enjoyed the show in the General Admission area. The crowd was nice, great and friendly. The people who worked at Desert Trip kept the place clean and safe. The concept of Desert Trip is great, and I am sure there will be more Desert Trip in the years to come. And the performance by The Rolling Stones? They did seven new songs as compared to last week. You may read about the show in the reports pages The Rolling Stones live at the Empire Polo Club (Coachella site), Indio, CA, USA, Friday October 14, 2016.
If you haven’t been to Palm Springs, then try it out. There are plenty of great places to dine, also lots of outdoor dining. And… make sure you fly there, because Palm Springs International Airport is the smallest nicest little airport I have used ever, that is in a relatively larger city. It is a true outdoor airport, and you have to be there to understand what “outdoor” means. It is truely outdoor. I will miss Palm Springs, paradise in the California desert.