As 2016 is coming to an end we are looking forward to the launch of our 50-city U.S. tour that launches January 2017. Before we move forward though we want to take a look back at the exciting year that brought us to this point. And what a year it has been filled with adventure and new experiences. In honor of those adventures we want to share a few with you including perhaps our most memorable: our visit to Joshua Tree National Park.

In mid-Spring we found ourselves driving east of Los Angeles to one of Americas most visited National Parks, Joshua Tree, named so by a group of Mormon settlers crossing the Mojave Desert in the mid-19th century. Aside from just the trees though, the park is a mecca for hikers, rock climbers, mountain bikers, wildlife buffs, and wild flower enthusiasts. On this particular trip, we learned how the park became a park, and learned the story of Minerva Hoyt.

Minerva (1866-1945) was a turn of the century-southern-belle, who married a wealthy socialite and moved to Southern California. After becoming entrenched in the botanical community of Los Angeles, Minerva would take trips to the desert east of the city to view the wild flowers. But upon the death of her husband and son, she began to seek the solace that only nature can offer.

As the years went by she started seeing the desert landscape change. People were digging up plants to sell in the city and travelers would drive out into the desert with their *new at the time* automobiles and light Joshua Trees on fire to light the way. Minerva took it upon herself to protect her favorite place. Eventually, she went all the way to the Federal Government and asked for protection of these unique habitats. Joshua Tree first became a national monument, and in 1994, became the National Park we know today.

For us history is fascinating. We were on a mission to find the most creative animal in the park though. Eventually we found them inside the flower of the Joshua Trees themselves. Continue watching to see just what we found! And after watching, be sure to subscribe to our channel so you don’t miss any of our adventures!