I’ve obsessed over The Joshua Tree House for a couple years now, and the opportunity to book finally came around and at the perfect time. So I decided to spend the second half of my birthday extravaganza exploring the high desert.
Sara and Rich Combs created a beautiful space perfect for the hygge time I’ve so desperately wanted for some time now. Every corner of the house was thoughtfully designed with love and care. I appreciate how they practice wabi-sabi, and create beauty out of what we think is broken. There’s also blankets and pillows everywhere to further foster that sense of warmth and togetherness. It was cold, overcast, and raining, but the weather just really emphasized my need for coziness with lots of homemade soup, blankets, and board games. Sidenote: If you do book The Joshua Tree House, their home and Joshua Tree guide they send to you is so nicely done; I’m keeping it as a souvenir.
Beyond the house, we took some time to explore Yucca Valley. The art scene in the desert is fantastic as we walked around Old Town. The End is a colorful gem in the desert filled with amazing vintage finds. I also got a sense of deep community as conversations were vibrant between staff and customers. Their door was also painted by Bunnie Reiss, and it made me love the shop even more.
We also stopped over to get some coffee and snacks at Frontier Cafe, with Hoof & Horn as their next door neighbor. We took some time to browse their shop with lots of clothing locally made in Los Angeles.
For dinner, it was must that we go back to Pappy and Harriet’s. Will and I went years ago, and loved the energy and the eclectic group of people who make their way there. From families to bikers to musicians to artists to locals, Pappy and Harriets is a great place to come together, eat good bbq, and listen to music. The platters are huge, and we definitely split a plate. The wait can be long, and I recommend you call to book a table in advance. Pioneertown is also within walking distance, and I was sad that we were unable to go because it was pretty late by the time we finished dinner.
The following day, we went up to Joshua National Tree Park. The entrance to the park was less than 15 minutes from the house too which was awesome. While the park was open despite the government shutdown, it made me realize how important Park Rangers are in insuring that these lands are protected. They’re also the people holding the line between visitors having a pleasant enjoyable trip and visitors going full Mad Max.
To be honest with you, initially I didn’t understand the Joshua Tree. I knew they looked like they came out of a Dr. Seuss book, but this trip changed things for me. I was standing there, looking at this large, gnarled limb Joshua Tree and instantly got it. Maybe it was being out there alone in the cold wind and rain that made me understood the beauty and importance of these trees. They’re unique in not growing straight, but rather in the direction of the wind. They’ve found life in what was considered inhabitable. It’s beautiful and wild in person, and they must be protected.
Check out more photos of our stay at the Joshua Tree House and from our trip below. Do you plan on making a trip to Joshua Tree? Take me with you! My time in the high desert isn’t over yet.