Tuesday, October 8 (continued)
Today the crew and I ride the most scenic section of Route 395 as we move southward through California on the east side of the Sierras. A few miles south of Carson City a right turn onto Route 50 would take us to Lake Tahoe. One of these years we’re going to go there, but not this year.
We pass through Minden and enter Gardnerville.
The speed limit is 45 mph with stop lights. Oh, is that what I think it is? Yes, my bank! See, I’ve been carrying around the $200 check that Casita Travel Trailers company sent me. A reader (dear Margaret) attributed her decision to purchase a Casita to me and my blog, so I get a check! It was sent to my mailing address in South Dakota and languished there for several weeks before I arranged to have my mail forwarded to me. I’ve been concerned that check would become invalid after so much time.
I never thought I’d go to the bank pulling the BLT!
I whip right in there, run inside, and make the deposit. The teller, a girl of about TWELVE, suggests I get an iPhone.
“Then all you have to do is take a picture of your check.” Yeah, well, it’s cheaper to get out of the van and walk in here, and I’m nothing if not cheap. Actually it’s not a bad idea since I go places where my bank isn’t located.
Shortly past Holbrook Junction is Topaz Lake.
What a jewel! Unfortunately I miss the only place to get off the road to take a photo.
There’s a stretch of road, I think between Bridgeport and Conway Summit (8138 ft.), that is a favorite of photographers and painters. People are painting or snapping photos when I stop the PTV to take my own photos.
Continuing southward on 395, Mono Lake makes a stunning debut viewed from an overlook.
I drive up to the Visitors Center which has a closed sign on it. A few other people are there, walking around the building in order to enjoy the view. The crew and I join them, but the wind picks up and the sky darkens.
I don’t know yet where we will camp for the night.
I hurry us out of there. I always have avoided looking for a boondock in the late afternoon. It’s not good practice. Today we got a late start and it took some time making it this far, what with the uphill grades and sightseeing along the way.
I’m pretty sure you can boondock around Mono Lake.
However, it’s windy, it’s late, and I don’t feel like going on a prolonged search. I get us back on Route 395. Suddenly I’m very weary. I want to stop driving and soon!
The sign says “Entering Inyo National Forest.”
Great! First forest road with any promise . . . I’m taking it! I miss a few forest roads. From the elevated position of Route 395, I can see forest roads winding among the pines. There are campsites down there!
We pass the start of the loop road that goes around June Lake.
June Lake is high elevation and this road isn’t much lower. Oh, what the heck! So it’s cold tonight. I want to pull off this road!
I make a right turn onto Glass Creek Road.
It’s wide gravel with no washboard. I take the second left, purely on intuition, drive through pine forest, and come to a turn-around at the end. Here it opens up to a wide vista of the Sierras!
I giggle with delight as I jump out of the PTV.
Quickly I run around to the side door and let out Bridget and Spike.
“Can you believe this?” I exclaim. “This is gorgeous!” I walk around in awe, my jaw hanging. “Will you look at this! Look at those mountains! I love this!”
I repeat these exclamations several times, pausing only to laugh out loud at our good fortune. This is one of the prettiest campsites we’ve ever found! It’s perfect!
Wednesday, October 9
Upon awakening, I sit up and lift the blind. It’s SNOWING!
Well, that’s what happens at 7,600 feet in October.
It snows all day long.
The crew and I stay inside our cozy home, hibernating. At times the wet snow is flying horizontally in the wind. A deer walks by during the worst of it. Birds scratch the snow and chipmunks scurry this way and that.
Spike and Bridget run outside only when nature calls. We sleep most of the day.
Next post: Scenes of Glass Creek Camp and the Sierras at our doorstep!
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“REAR VIEW MIRROR”
On January 1st, 2013, the crew and I were camped on Sidewinder Road west of Yuma.