The wild west has left its mark on California and we enjoyed a taste of it this morning. We rode up to Oak Glen for breakfast at Apple Annie’s Restaurant and Bakery. As you can probably tell by the pies in the photo, at Apple Annie’s they do NOT skimp on pie filling. Also they guarantee their breakfasts will fill you up or the second helping is on the house — I couldn’t take advantage though, the first plate of bacon and egg skillet was enormous! (and delicious).

The atmosphere at Apple Annie’s alone makes the drive well worth it. The walls are plastered with photos of “The Duke” and even the waitresses play the part by packing heat. You’ll find six-shooters conveniently located in little frames on the walls, I suppose, in case gun-play happens to break out and you’re not strapped up.

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Next, we did a little bit of shopping in the nearby shops at Idyllwild. The most interesting one to me was Mountain Mike’s.

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If you ever go to this shop, inside you’ll find the pleasantly nostalgic aroma of leather and Mike himself, a friendly and extremely bearded fellow, busily measuring and cutting leather for whatever custom project he happens to be working on.

The beared Mountain Mike in black and white
Mountain Mike

He seemed to be, true to the store’s name, a genuine mountain man. Above his head I notice a very old looking rifle and sword — he explained that the rifle and sabre were the ones his great-great grandfather carried in the American Civil War. Not for sale, but nonetheless quite something to see.

Mountain Mike's Great Great Grandfather's Civil War Era Rifle and Sabre
Mountain Mike’s Great Great Grandfather’s Civil War Era Rifle and Sabre

After we had shopped ’til we dropped, we drove back on the scenic route to Palm Springs. Most of the trees and shrubs are sprouting leaves again after the terrible fire that ripped through the area last year.

We made a quick stop at a scenic pull-out and the panoramic photo below shows the winding road into the Coachella Valley. (Worth clicking for the large version).

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It has been another great day in southern California.

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