Out & About—Old Highway 80 & the best. chocolate. ever.

Out & About

Now that I have a fine fine fine super computer that will process pictures much much faster, I can do longer blog posts. Yahooooooooooooo!

So today I’m going to continue my tour of Old Highway 80 through the boondocks of East San Diego County.

Driving tour of East San Diego County via Old Highway 80

For previous posts on the beginnings of this Old Highway 80 tour, see these:

  1. Glad I could add some laughter to Mr. Agent’s day (Jan 27, 2017)
  2. Reminds me, something about a big wall (Jan 29, 2017)
  3. Marshall Scotty’s Playground Park (Feb 19, 2017)
  4. Stand down. Local tourist (Mar 2, 2017)
  5. The San Diego & Arizona Railway (Mar 7, 2017)
  6. Who wants to drink brown water (Mar 9, 2017)
  7. Halls of History—The Coogan Ranch (Mar 15, 2017)
  8. Out & About—Cruise historic Highway 80 (Mar 23, 2017)
  9. Bankhead Springs, drive-through ghost town (May 17, 2017)

Since I already have taken things out of order with the above posts, it’s best not to try to follow Old Highway 80 using my blog posts. Instead, get a copy of Chris Wray’s book, Highways to History, and following the “Highway 80 from El Cajon to Ocotillo” tour, pages 15-52. Alternately, if you’d like a personal docent for the tour, all you have to do is contact me. Give me 24 hours notice, and I’m yours. We’ll even take my car! Meanwhile, here’s the rest of the Old Highway 80 using unprocessed pictures that are left in my computer folder, seeming to indicate that they have not been used in a blog post yet.

We’ll start in this post at the Acorn Casino since it’s such all roads—Interstate 8, Highway 80—lead to the Casino. Looks like this:

Golden Acorn Casino

Next, go through Live Oak Springs and past Live Oak Springs Road until you get to the Tierra del Sol Road intersection. On the north side of the intersection is a stone tower sitting on top of a rounded boulder. Looks like this:

Stone tower on rounded boulder on Tierra del Sol Road, Old Highway 80, San Diego County

Sources don’t seem to know what it is but best guess, which I agree with based on my 55+ years of experience in real estate, is that the it is part of a building foundation sitting atop the boulder. I’ve seen such construction many times in many states.

Highway 80 joins with Highway 94 past Tierra del Sol Road. Look for the Highway 80 intersection with Jewell Valley Road (south)/Ribbonwood Road (north). Lots of buildings around, including the Wisteria Candy Cottage at 39961 Old Highway 80. Looks like this:


Stop at the Wisteria Candy Cottage.

Even if you don’t think you want candy.

They have the best chocolate in the world. Buy some for later.

As stated on their signs, they have been providing “old fashioned candies since 1921.” Everything I bought on my trip was based on chocolate. Maybe they have other “old fashioned candies” but I didn’t see any. Or maybe my eyes simply were focused on chocolate because my mouth was watering for chocolate. Best. Chocolate. Ever. I had read, and I agree.

The Wisteria Candy Cottage actually is located in Boulevard (pop. 315) but Wisteria is the name for western Boulevard left over from fifty years ago. It also is located in the original building and in the original location of the Mountain Empire High School.

You can start eating your chocolate while you walk around outside to the back of the Wisteria Candy Cottage. There you’ll see a huge dead building. Looks like this:

That dead building is the ruins of what sources say is an old lodge or temple for the Masons located in Imperial Valley. Sadly, that’s all the information I can find online. It’s probably the only dead building I’ve ever seen that is not ruined by graffiti.

This post approved by Zoey the Cool Cat

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