Location: Sacramento, CA to Ely, NV
Weather: Warm, Sunny 80's mostly, though 60's in the Sierra Nevadas
Audio: Finished Jonathan Park, Beverly Cleary's Henry Huggins and The Paper Route
Yesterday while shopping at Barnes and Noble a store clerk gave us a sheet for their summer reading program. What a flurry of reading it has sparked! They are all trying to find eight books that they can read so that they can pick out a free book from the store's paperback list.
Our first day out in five weeks without C's vision and direction.... He is very missed by us all. In the a.m. we wandered about trying to set up the new routine and had to recheck things to make sure we weren't forgetting anything. To our knowledge we did it all. We even remembered to pull in the slideout and the stairs. Our hope was to get on the road early anticipating a long ride, and we were on the road by 9:15 a.m. Not too bad.
One thing about C is that he does catch the vision of our goal location and we aim straight toward it. I on the other hand am reading the tour books and signs as we go along and am willing in an instant to change direction and throw our well thought out plans to the wind for the hopes of a better adventure. Well today, I'll have to say, I was well controlled. Our goal was over 400 miles of driving on Route 50 to reach Ely, NV. We didn't even stop to get photos of the beautiful scenery as we drove over the mountains! It was like only what I have seen in the picture books with the tall, majestic pines towering over head and the rushing rock filled stream that the kids said, "You can tell it is cold just by looking at it." They were looking at the mountains with snow peaks and thinking that snow had melted and was now rushing down that river. No one wanted to go in it. As we made our way around the bends and up and down thousands of feet in elevation changes, I kept saying, "It is just so beautiful!" We did bring up several times the scenes of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz in The Long, Long Traileras they drove their "rig" over the Sierra Nevadas carrying Lucy's rock collection.
We drove right by Lake Tahoe (though did stop to pay $4.59 for gas), into Nevada (where we saw gas for $3.99, grrr!), through Nevada's Capital, Carson City and out onto what Life Magazine entitled in '87, The Loneliest Road in America. It would be fun to take time to explore the road, but instead we drove by signs of the Pony Express, petroglyphs, an old shoe tree, sand dunes (the kids chimed in here - Can we PLEASE stop!), salt flats where people had taken stones and wrote words by the roadside, and abandoned mining towns. At lunch on a scenic pullout, I read about many of these things in our guide book so we had a taste, but our view was only from our windows. I was also imagining the Reed family and their discouragement as they came upon the salt flats after journeying through the Rockies. It was here that they had to leave many of their possessions. What a struggle it must have been to continue on in such conditions.
Our next gas stop was in Eureka, NV - a quaint mining town that K was able to photograph in the setting sun. We finally arrived in Ely KOA at 7:30 p.m., set up camp and prepared our last Dinner A'Fare meal. The kids got some of their energy out at the playground, playing tether ball, scootering and watching the donkeys, but still had a hard time settling down after a long day sitting in the car.