February 11th, 2019
We drove to the trailhead for the Calcite Mine Trail which is back towards the Salton Sea along S22. There is a parking area on either side of the road where the trail starts. It is actually a 4×4 trail but requires a lifted vehicle for clearance on the rocks and large ruts along the way. The hike was about 4.5 miles out and back. We followed the 4×4 trail on the way out to the mine site. According to a plaque the optical-quality calcite was mined during WW2 for use in bomb sights. At the mine site small pieces are every where. There is a lookout point off to the south east off the mine site and there you can see veins of calcite in the rocks.
From the lookout point you can see out to the Salton Sea and south towards Brawley.
On the way back down there is a point at which the trail crosses the bottom of a slot canyon. At this point we turned and followed the bottom of the canyon back down.
On the way back from the Calcite Mine trail we stopped a couple of times along the road to take pictures of the many wild flowers that were in bloom. We also drove into the Arroyo Salado Campground and walked around looking at the flowers.
There were many varieties to be seen including:
Dune Evening Primrose
Brown Eyed Evening Primrose and a Purple Something or Other
The Ocotillo were very green and many had flowers on them.
This website maintains up to date information about the current flower conditions in the Borrego Springs and Anza Borrego Desert State Park area. There are maps and pictures for thos looking to head out flower hunting.