By Lynne Tucker

Extraordinary scenery abounds as your red Jeep winds its way through the labyrinth of geological cuts and canyons of the San Andreas Fault Zone, while your naturalist guide entertains you with stories about the plants, animals, geology and history of the California desert.

On this exciting 4WD adventure to the private Metate Ranch preserve on the San Andreas Fault you will:

Experience the twisted and tortured landscape of an active earthquake fault system as your guide describes the geology of the area and explores the skeleton of the earth.


Walk between the steep walls of deep canyons created by the powerful forces of plate tectonics, water, wind and time.

Explore a natural palm oasis where crystal clear water bubbles up from the underground aquifer.

Learn about the culture and lifestyle of the Cahuilla Indians and how they used the desert’s plants for food, medicine, tools, weapons, shelter and more.

Learn about the plants and animals of the California desert.

Discover the fascinating history of the Coachella Valley.

Enjoy spectacular views as your guide describes the geologic forces and local history that shaped the Coachella Valley.

Desert Adventures is the only tour company that can take you to this private location and provide this unique experience.

Tour schedule

October – May

Public Tours are offered daily at  8:30am and 1pm. Private tours are offered daily every morning and afternoon.

June – September

Public tours depart at 8:30am Monday – Saturday.

Tour duration

Three hours from Coco’s restaurant in Palm Desert. Hotel pickup adds up to one hour.

Regular tour prices

Departures through December 31:

Adult $135

Senior (62+) $120

Child (12 & Under) $110

Each Jeep holds up to seven guests.

Departures beginning

January 1, 2018:

Adult $139

Senior (62+) $124

Child (12 & Under) $114

Each Jeep holds up to seven guests.

For more information and directions visit

Think travel! Lynne Tucker is a travel writer and photojournalist based in Palm Desert.