Desert - Palm Springs - Bogert Trail
Touring * Beginner * Historic * Slalom *
Approaching Palm Springs from the north on Interstate 10, take the Highway 111 exit just past San Gorgonio Pass. Follow Highway 111 nearly 10 miles to Palm Springs and down Palm Canyon Drive through downtown. When Highway 111 curves to the left (becoming East Palm Canyon Drive), continue going straight on South Palm Canyon for another 1.5 miles. Turn left when you reach Bogert Trail and follow it through a golf course, across the bridge over Palm Canyon Wash, and around the corner to the foot of the housing development on the hillside. Park on the gravel pad that used to be a sales office parking lot on the left. Approaching from the south on Interstate 10, exit at Ramon Road in Thousand Palms and drive west for approximately 7.5 miles (passing through Cathedral City) until you reach Palm Canyon Drive just south of downtown Palm Springs. Turn south and follow the directions above starting from South Palm Canyon Drive.
Offering one of the grandest views to be had in these parts without taking the Aerial Tramway, Bogert Trail is also a wonderful skating site for beginners and expert downhillers alike, at least as long as the lots in the failed lower phase of the Andreas Point housing development remain unsold. Looking north from the low table at the canyon's mouth, you can see the high ridges of the San Bernardino Mountains, with Palm Springs and the Coachella Valley in the foreground. The rocky walls rising behind you are starkly beautiful and very close, sheltering the palm canyons belonging to the reservation of the Agua Caliente band of Cahuilla Indians. The reservation's entrance gate is farther down Palm Canyon Drive, just around the corner. A car may pass by every five minutes or so, but it is usually very quiet on Bogert Trail, with only the occasional buzz of a desert beetle or the song of a bird to disturb the silence. Skate first among the dry and empty lots of the lower Andreas Point housing development, following Sevilla Avenue either on the four-foot-wide sidewalks or on the street. Watch for sand here and there on the pavement. After admiring the view from lot number two, go back to Bogert Trail, turn left, and make your way up to Barona Road and its four big dead-end signs to get the widest view of the Coachella Valley below. Barona is just long and wide enough to provide very scenic grounds for figure skating practice and general play. Expert hill skaters will want to test their skills at the other end of Bogert Trail behind the sales office parking lot, where it enters a palm-filled hillside housing development. There are two hills to choose from. Stick to Bogert Trail for a longer and more gradual climb that only becomes threatening on the last quarter mile. Turn back where the road makes its second curve to the left near the peppertree at 3750 A; if you proceed any farther, you will encounter a high-speed blind curve. For an alternate route, take the first left off Bogert just after you enter the neighborhood to ascend Andreas Hills Drive, which starts out gently enough but becomes very steep just before it meets Bogert at the top of the hill. The two streets actually make a loop, but the last section is so steep (both for uphill and downhill skating) that you really should avoid it if you want to save your skin. The brown pueblo- and adobe-style home on the left is a good landmark for turning back. No matter which road you choose, you want to be very careful in your descent, because halfway down there is likely to be a river of sprinkler runoff crossing both roads in the shallow culvert that runs down the middle of Hillview Cove.
Aug 1, 1995
Jun 27, 2004