After a much too short visit with Kevin, Oli and our surrogate grand-doggies, we left Florence, OR for points east. Traveling at a pretty fast clip, we went through $495.37 worth of diesel to get from there to Moab, UT. On a good note though, included in that total we do have a full tank to start the next leg of our journey.
On the way we got to experience an overnight in a casino parking lot on the Oregon/CA line, (nice and quiet but WAY to smokey to even venture inside), and two nights with our dearest friends Melissa and Tim at their new home in Chico - exploring on bikes the massive Bidwell Park and the eclectic downtown area. An early snowstorm going over Donner Pass led to an unexpected and thoroughly enjoyable extended day stay outside Fallon that allowed a visit with our tribe.
The drive through the long lonely miles of Nevada reminded us once again why we love this state. Flat lands of dusty desert and tumbleweed quickly change to the snow-covered mountains of the West Humboldt Range in the distance. On down the road we watch as the Ruby Mountains come into view and Bob tells me stories from the two years he lived there when he started his job with US Fish and Wildlife. Sara was just starting third grade at that time, and while it was incredibly difficult to have the 400+ mile distance between us, it allowed him a career that provides us with the lifestyle we now enjoy.
As we get close to the East Humboldt range we watch as a massive storm is brewing off in the distance. Thankfully as it got closer all we had to show for it was a few drops on the windshield. It’s not easy taking a good pic from the giant screen of the windshield as your going 65 down the road, but sometimes - that’s all you get.
This is our third extended visit to the Moab area and we will spend the next month re-visiting some of our favorite hikes and exploring new areas. Coming from sea level for the past four months, we may have a little altitude adjustment to contend with on some of the more difficult hikes planned. At 4000 ft. the air is dryer and thinner as Bob found out during his first 10 mile mountain bike ride yesterday. Camped on Utah State Trust Land overlooking the Klondike Bluffs, it’s just a short drive to the back entrance of Arches National Park. Our free spot is secluded and quiet and the night skies are a spectacle to behold. Even though it is towards the end of official Milky Way “season”, I am hoping for some practice while we are here.
Off for a hike - more in the upcoming days and weeks as we explore Arches, Canyonlands and the LaSale Mountain range.
(If you have the time, please leave me a quick comment, I think I finally have it fixed so they post and show on the blog)