With 55 years of combined riding experience in the area, Academy Rentals has the goods and knowledge to equip riders for adventures such as zooming across the desert on the back of an ATV or gliding across placid waves atop a wakeboard or jet ski. Half- and full-day tours sweep across dunes in California and Mexico, outfitting guests in safety equipment and giving them their pick of dirt bike, ATV, or dune buggy from makers such as Yamaha and Honda. Before guided or self-directed trips, riders of all experience level can learn or reacquaint themselves with driving basics at the hands of knowledgeable instructors who’ve mastered high-speed transportation by sleeping on the underside of a bullet train.
The Indian Wells Art Festival gathers painted, sculpted, recycled, and interactive art from around the country to enlighten eyes and motivate minds. Showcasing the works of more than 200 artists, the festival encourages unlimited gandering across spectacular 2-D and 3-D artscapes. Glass-blowing and pottery demonstrations enliven the afternoons, interspersed with live music and swarms of virtual art critics. Children can take part in interactive activities including sidewalk-chalk drawing and the Faces of Hope community mural project. After traversing the maze of oil, watercolor, and collage, art enthusiasts can satisfy their stomach cravings with the Eggs in the Garden Sunday brunch (for an additional fee) from 10 a.m.–noon, along with more food at Café Fresh and ongoing beer and wine tastings. Each ticket is valid for one day's admission only.
A part of La Quinta Resorts for more than 14 years, Jim McLean Golf Schools provides peerless instruction at this popular golfing destination, where budding birdie-hunters can drive balls against the backdrop of the Santa Rosa Mountains or compete to hurl a pitching wedge into the Salton Sea. Jim McLean's certified instructors go through an intensive training process that includes thousands of hours of instruction, competing in staff tournaments, and independently researching the school's extensive database of swings. The golf gurus customize lessons to best match each player’s skill level, strengths and weaknesses, and theme song.
Don’t let the stunning backdrop of the Santa Rosa Mountains induce a false sense of security: the links at SilverRock Resort are riddled with challenges. The home course for the Bob Hope Classic from 2008 to 2011, SilverRock sends players past massive bunkers and intersecting water hazards. Hole 12 reserves the title as the course’s longest, where players must wallop drives or construct tiny kayaks to get their golf balls across a canal. The course finishes with a dramatic 18th hole, as a lake alongside the fairway devours misguided shots. After rounds, players can visit the clubhouse, a charming renovation of a former working-ranch hacienda nestled into the rocky outcroppings.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 72 course * Total length of 7,587 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 76.3 from the back tees * Course slope of 139 from the back tees * Six sets of tees per hole * Scorecard
A PGA-certified instructor that utilizes video and motion-analysis technology, Craig Frank formulates individualized plans to help his students boost their golf game. His training regimens typically begin with a 90-minute session that covers the entire swing, from correctly lining up with the golf ball to finishing with a graceful pirouette follow-through. Meanwhile, JC Video ARC-20 video technology captures every movement of the player's swing, allowing for later review and comparison with the swing mechanics of more than 1,000 professional golfers.
At the age of 7, Darcy Edwards would shout for her pony, Fiddlesticks. She still remembers rides on the back of her diminutive steed, though she now has more than 25 years of experience and a forest of colorful ribbons and medals to show for her abilities. In lessons she works to pass on the skills she has accrued in western, dressage, and jumper riding. Darcy, who has been profiled in California Riding Magazine, teaches equestrians of all ages the importance of grooming techniques and accounting for daylight savings time when riding off into the sunset. She also leads day camps for young children in hopes of sparking their equine interests, just as Fiddlesticks sparked hers.