Sometimes secret places are in some of the most well-known places in our public lands. These secret places are kept a secret because there are groups or organizations that do not feel you, the reader of this very book, can be trusted with these secrets.
In his beginnings, Death Valley Jim was a lot like those who read his books. He combed through piles of research, many of which lead to dead ends and poorly documented sites. He also encountered outright refusal from rangers and other “protectors” when asked about these secret places. This frustration and secrecy is what has motivated him to continue the Secret Places in the Mojave Desert series – to help others like him with a genuine love and interest in the desert and the many treasures that lie within it find them and enjoy them.
Our National Parks, Preserves, Monuments, and Forests were created with the intent of preserving the special natural wonders they behold. They were created for all of us to enjoy and explore! But how can these places be truly enjoyed if some of their greatest wonders are being kept a secret from the public? Every American pays taxes – and a portion of those taxes is used to preserve our national lands. And every American should be allowed to enjoy every square foot of them.
This book focuses on the “secret” places within Joshua Tree National Park, The Mojave National Preserve, and surrounding areas. You will not be able to find many of these locations in any other publication because they have been so fiercely protected by the powers that be. It is expected this book will be met with much criticism and resistance from many, but it is Jim’s hope that just as the lovers of the desert and its history always have, they will continue to respect these natural and anthropological wonders. “Take only pictures and memories, leave only footprints.”