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Capturing the Splendor of America's Hidden Treasures – Part II

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Some of the world’s most beautiful and untouched wilderness lies virtually outside your front door. In the unmatched brilliance of High Definition, we bring fellow explorers to these places. They are off road enthusiast like you and me. We all have our favorite hidden treasures – places that are not over-run by tourists – that can’t be reached through “normal” means of travel.

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For me, each escape into the outdoors on paths less traveled, is a quest to get closer to the serenity and peace of the natural world. A chance to get away from the constant noise and clutter of my everyday world of congested freeways, cell phones, and corporate meetings in the city. This escape is what having an adventure is about. With the proper planning, preparation, and a healthy respect for the challenges of the journey, these places can be safely visited, creating memories to last a lifetime!

Last time we visited the wondrous area of the High Sierra Mountains, at elevations up over 10,000 feet above sea level, around the lovely isolated mountain valley called Monache Meadows. To get there we traveled one of the most famous Jeep trails in all of California – the Sherman Jeep Trail. We traveled along the cattle trails of the old west, to the location of our base camp at the foot of Monache Mountain which lies in the shadow of Olancha Peak – the “Southern Sentinel of the Sierras” – one of the highest mountains in all of North America. During our stay we discovered a bit of the history of the area, enjoying the beautiful scenery before setting up our tents. That night we relaxed around the camp fire reflecting on a wonderful day’s journey filled with unspoiled beauty and excitement.

The second part of our journey took us down out of these cool settings, dropping over 8,000 feet of elevation into the harsh, yet beautiful landscape of the Mojave Desert. After a good night’s sleep we arose to enjoy the sunrise over the mountain top and the pristine meadows, watching the forest creatures rise up to start another day in their magnificent world. We packed up our base camp (making sure that no trace of our presence was left behind), loaded up the vehicles and headed out for the day’s expedition.

All during the journey down the mountain, the weather remained perfectly clear and the views were breathtaking. From the edge of  the vistas, we watched the horizon open up to an awesome display of the millions of open acres of the Mojave Desert below. The temperature continuously rose as we maintained our steady decent. Remember, in addition to the Guest Adventurers Cathe and Paul, our Host Mark Skowronski, and our Expert Tom Severin of Badland Off-Road Adventures (www.4x4training.com), we had six production vehicles (mostly jeeps) carrying the crew and everything we needed for the production and another long day filled with discovery.

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