Sunday, June 05, 2016

The Living Desert, September 1972

Today I have a few images of the old "Living Desert" area within Nature's Wonderland. They're not that great, I know, but they're better than a fork in your eye.

Rocks. Big rocks. Big funny looking rocks! Some say that these strange formations were created by aliens as landmarks for a landing strip. We welcome you, oh alien Overlords! 

Saguaro cactus were voted "Most Popular Cacti" in a 1968 issue of LOOK magazine. The competition was fierce, let me tell you. Barrel cactus, pipe organ cactus, and screaming cactus were all in the running. But they are all losers! Let's laugh at them! Or we can just appreciate the beauty of this scene. The desert is looking very lush in this photo, there must have been some recent rains.


Nanook said...


How could leave out the 'nano' cactus from the running-?? I feel slighted. Harrumph-!

Patrick Devlin said...

That first shot looks kind of morning-ish. And here it is morning. Er, that's all I got.

K. Martinez said...

Your talk of strange rock formations and aliens reminds me of one of my favorite sci-fi flicks; 1957's "The Monolith Monsters" starring Grant Williams and Lola Albright. Loved that odd little gem of a movie. Now I'll look at the Living Desert in a whole new way. Thanks, Major.

DrGoat said...

Remember Monolith Monsters well. Used to be a staple second
feature at the drive-in in the 60s. Loved it. Living in Tucson,
Saguaros and Barrels were everywhere growing up. Remember getting a big kick out of Natures Wonderland in the early 50s-60s.

Medley said...

Nature's Wonderland is my very favorite part of Disneyland's past. Definitely not the greatest shots of all time, but still special in their own way.

Thanks again, Major

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, I know we all have our favorite cacti, but when LOOK magazine gives you information, you just have to work with it. Even when I totally make it up!

Patrick Devlin, ha ha. It’s more than I’VE got.

K. Martinez, I have heard of The Monolith Monsters, and have seen the poster for it; I always kind of wondered what it was about. Time to check in to IMDB.

DrGoat, ah, the drive-in movie theater… there is still one in San Luis Obispo, I took my niece and nephew to see Pixar’s “UP” years ago. The place was packed! I hope it never goes away.

Medley, you have good taste… Nature’s Wonderland was unique, and awesome!

Chuck said...

In the back of the second photo you can see some of the anthropomorphic cacti that were a highlight of the NWRR's Living Desert. I can remember as a kid wondering how many cacti they had to look over before they finally found one in the wild with the shape they were looking for.