Don't Miss The 50th Annual Desert Safari | Outdoor Channel
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Don't Miss The 50th Annual Desert Safari

Held March 2-4, 2012, The Desert Safari is part fundraiser and all fun


From Tierra Del Sol-Four Wheel Club of San Diego

Tierra Del Sol is proud to announce the 50th Desert Safari to be held March 2nd, 3rd and 4th in the Truckhaven Hills area of the North Ocotillo Wells SVRA. The 50th annual Desert Safari will again present an awesome trail for all skill levels within the 4x4 community. Guests will have an opportunity to meet over 120 vendors and join in the spectacular “TDS Raffle” with over $150K in prizes. Side-by-sides are welcome and this year you can expect a spectacular fireworks display on Saturday night after the raffle.

Doris Wynne, who is now a spirited 93-year-old wealth of information, provided a great historical perspective on the area and Tierra Del Sol that I wanted to share with you as we approach the 50th Desert Safari.

1918. With the end of World War I came the rapid popularity of automobiles. People started coming to the desert and the creation of the The Ensign Ranch and The Di Georgio Corporation started a new era in the region.

1928. Already citizens were beginning to grow concerned about preserving the desert and Guy Fleming, a Fellow of the San Diego Natural History Museum, started promoting the adoption of Borrego as a State Park.

1941. Finally the dream was realized and the Anza Borrego Park System was established, but that also brought developers with visions of a desert resort and that required roads. Those early rough trails were Coyote Canyon, Yaqui Pass and the Truckhaven Trail which at that time was a 30 mile rough road passing over hills, washes and mesas taking 3-4 hours to traverse. Truckhaven Trail began at the tip of Butler Mountain (Coyote Mountain) eastward to Peg Leg Smith’s monument on the Old Doc Beatty Road. It was Doc Beatty who first envisioned the idea of a wagon trail along the base of the Santa Rosa Mountains south to the badlands and the old Hwy 99, emerging near the truck spot known as Truckhaven. The road was built through some very tough yet beautiful terrain, following Palo Verde Wash, into Arroyo Salado and from there down to Beatty’s Ice Box near the Old Prospector’s Post Office. It continued through Tule Wash, Cannon Ball Valley and jumped out into the mesa near the Calcite Mine Road. From there it moved eastward overlooking Palm Wash and dropping down again into the Anza Ditch. A few more miles and you arrived at the old Truckhaven café and station set amongst a small grove of trees…..literally an oasis in the desert where the early members of TDS like Tex Webster, Bozzy Willis, Roy Pruitt and Joe Branch planned the explorations into the area and laid out many of trails that are found throughout the area.

1949. The first Anza Jeep Cavalcade formed for the purpose of promoting the concept of a 17-mile road into Borrego, Montezuma Valley and onto Warner Springs was approved by the State Park Commission.

1957. The State Committee consented to the construction of a paved road, which followed the general direction of the old dirt Truckhaven trail wherever possible. It was named the Borrego-Salton Seaway or more commonly known as the S22. It was completed in 1968 and leads so many of us to the Desert Safari each year.

In those early years a “Search and Rescue” team of local men with CB radios explored the area and ultimately became intimately familiar with the entire area, breaking new trails and figuring out how to traverse the notches, hills and valleys thru their rescue work. Several members started focusing on adventure and exploration and two of these early pioneers, Roy Pruitt and Bozzy Willis ultimately formed the nucleus of the club they names Tierra Del Sol. Bozzy created the artwork that is still seen today on all the members’ vehicles. The club was incorporated as a not-for-profit club in 1962 and the annual Desert Safari, now about to reach the 50th, was born. Proudly the rosters of TDS still contain family names from the origins with generations following in their forefathers footsteps aspiring to protect these lands for our continued use. Albeit a never-ending battle, the families and members of Tierra Del Sol continue to enjoy the area and work hard to preserve it for the enjoyment of future generations.

We are proud to have reached our 50th Desert Safari and hope that you will come out on March 2nd, 3rd, and 4th to celebrate with us as we work hard to put on the most spectacular event ever. Vendors, food, raffle, trail rides from mild to wild, and even a fireworks show bring together a community of friends and families all focused on enjoying the sport we are all working so hard to protect. You are welcome and we hope to see you on the trail.

About Tierra Del Sol
Tierra Del Sol is a not-for-profit family oriented 4x4 club located in San Diego, CA that continues to use proceeds from the Desert Safari to fight land closures and keep trails open. For more information on Tierra Del Sol and the 50th Annual Desert Safari, please visit and

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