On our way out to the Anza Borrego Desert a road was closed so we were detoured up the south grade road to Palomar mountain where just the day before it had received a dusting of snow from a storm that moved quickly in and out. Then we drove down the east grade road to get back in route through the rolling grasslands, through oak woodlands, through the Pinyon - Juniper transition zone and the finally dropping down into the vast Anza Borrego desert, then winding across the desert to the southern spurs of the Santa Rosa Mountains. This was my first time hiking in this type of terrain. It was incredible. We explored the washes and slot canyons and then hiked up into the mountains a little further and explored the old Calcite crystal mines. We got down into some of the trench mines and seen the huge veins of crystal in the rock. We got to see two desert iguanas along the way. Its amazing to see them run super fast along the desert floor. Great day of contrasting landscapes and total peace and serenity while perched up in those badlands eating lunch and looking out over the desert and the Salton Sea basin.