I have clients from time to time ask me for an alternative to Joshua Tree National Park. The answer is always the same, no. That was until I was recently on a music video and I discovered Blayney Ranch located in Lake Los Angeles, about an hour and half from Los Angeles. This location is in LA county and is a lot closer than Joshua Tree. Since Blayney Ranch is on private property, there are few restrictions one would fine in a national park.
The ranch is fenced in, away from most major roads and one could film from almost any angle. I had no problem gaining access to the ranch in my forty-foot motor home, though larger trucks might have a harder time navigating the entrance, though not impossible, if the driver drives straight into the location and backs out of the ranch. Another plus about this location, you are less than twenty minutes from Palmdale. This could be beneficial if your shoot requires multiple days. Palmdale has plenty of lodging options, restaurants, grocery stores, Starbucks and other useful businesses one might need for a production.
When one thinks about Joshua Tree National parks, one thinks about Joshua trees and mountains made of fragmented rocks. The problem with Joshua Tree, you can only film in certain locations, you are about three hours without traffic from Los Angeles. Getting a film permit is an arduous process, sometimes taking weeks to get permission and there is always problems with public intrusion. This can be problematic if you are filming a sensitive product like an unreleased car or you have talent that wants and needs privacy.
Since Blayney Ranch is on private property, hidden from most roads, you can film a car or a celebrity in private. I found so many places to take pictures and since the property is on a hill there is a wonderful vista point to shoot the valley below. The ranch looks so much like Joshua Tree, most people would not know the difference.
If you want more information about Blayney Ranch call Randall Blayney at 818.621.6413. If you have any questions about this location or other locations call me Michael Green 818.317.7099. Also if you need a motor home or other services feel free to call me.