Every year around Easter a group of scout leaders bring girl scouts out to a desert to camp, hike, rappel, etc. They originally camped up in the Great Falls area, but sometime in the 80’s they moved their camp to the Indian Joe’s area.
A former participant named Cindy wrote the following description:
It was the highlight of the week for the older girls to get to rappel down off the big rock that sat up over that little waterfall and spring. It was deep in the canyon. (I have pix if you’re interested). I first went in 1980 or so, then returned as an adult to help teach rock climbing in the early 1990s. We’d also hike to a place called the Mule Flats, up in the Argus Range somewhere? It was worth the hike because a small pipe had water running out of it and you could wash your hair! (The only water down in the camp was from the water buffalos the Navy would bring in for us from China Lake and we had to be frugal with it!)
The “flats” part had low grass covering it (said to have grown from the hay seed brought up to feed the mules and/or grown from seed in the mule’s’ poo?) I have many fond memories of that place. One year, the Space Shuttle landed at Edwards while we were at the encampment. I remember hearing the sonic booms as the shuttle and escort jets flew overhead. I think that was the same year we saw the aurora borealis (1982 I think?)
One year we boiled (106 degrees) and on another year at the Mule Flats we froze (woke up with my breath frozen to the inside of my ground cloth! I saw a bobcat one night and, of course, heard the burros. We’d also have a slideshow night where this old man came out and showed/told us about the history of the area. I can’t remember his name. (Indian Joe or something?)
Anyhow, I’d love to see a post on this topic. I’m sure there are literally THOUSANDS of women from the Los Angeles region who have similar memories of the place too. Thanks for listening!
FROM THE MPE.CAMP WEBSITE:
2016/2017 IMPORTANT DATES – HERE NOW!
8th by 11:59PM Camper Responses due via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or via the desert acceptance reply form
11th @ 7:00PM First Desert Patrol Meeting (MANDATORY!) with applications and payment due @ Torrance Scout Center
23rd @ 7:00PM Backpackers meeting for all 2nd+ year campers planning to backpack
7th @ 6-7:30PM Load truck at Columbia Park in Torrance (Prairie Avenue @ 190th Street)
8th @ 6AM Adult staff & MISCs leave for desert
9th @ 6:30AM Campers leave for desert from Columbia Park (sharp!)
13th at 6PM Campers return from desert at Columbia Park
29th @ 7PM Ice Cream Social at Torrance Scout Center
Cindy, thanks a lot for bringing this to my attention and for making this post possible.