A visit to the World's Tallest Thermometer in Baker, California

Baker, California (population 735) is known as the "Gateway to Death Valley." I was there yesterday when the temperature was a balmy 106°F. My family and I were driving back from Las Vegas (where I attended the Trivia Championship of North America — more about that in another post). I saw a sign on I-15 advertising Baker as the home of the "Worlds Tallest Thermometer" and decided to pull off the highway and take a gander.

As it turns out, the 134-foot-tall thermometer has seen better days. The light bulb grid displays weren't telling the temperature. They were showing random numbers and letters. Roadside America has more information about the thermometer, along with a photo of it. Notice that the thermometer in my photo now has BIG BOY painted on it — an unfortunate addition, if you ask me. (And take a look at the Bob mascot on the roof. It's so off-model it makes me want to cry.)

My advice: don't go to Baker to see the world's tallest thermometer.

However, if you are in the mood for Greek food, Baker is a great place to go. We ate at the Mad Greek. We had roast chicken, hummus, and decent espresso. (I originally ordered Greek coffee, asking the counter person if it was sweet. She told me it was not sweet but it was strong. I said that was great, but when I tasted it it was very sugary and weak. Fortunately they exchanged it for an espresso.)

The Mad Greek's decor is as delightful as food.