Saturday, October 3, 2009

From June Lake To Pahrump

We broke camp at June Lake, heading south and east hurrying before the cold front arrived and its predicted 70 mile per hour wind gusts. The weather forecaster had even used the word snow, and that word alone would have done it.
As I went to raise the front of our fifth wheel the gears stopped moving, the gear box had broken. Luckily I was able to hand crank the house up enough to hook up, and we headed south.
The Sierras passed, a string of thirteen thousand plus peaks and even a 14000 plus peak, Mt Toms, all displayed their granite faces. To the east of Owens Valley the White Mountains reared high above the valley floor.
At Bishop we discovered a nice small city that we would have liked to stay at but the cold and wind drove us on. We turned northeast on US 6 and passed White Mountain, another thirteen thousand feet mountain standing proud.
Before crossing into Nevada we drove through a series of small towns and irrigated fields which spoke that not all the water of Owens Valley had been stolen by Los Angles. Nevada's tallest peak, Boundary Peak stood out as we crossed into that state.
At Coaldale we merged onto US 95 and the traffic increased but it wasn't bad. The front hadn't caught us yet and so we easily reached Tonopah and its gold mines. Turning south we headed for our destination for the day, Beatty, but the sightseeing wasn't over. A longitudianal sand dune, called Giant Dune tempted us to turn off and climb it, but not this day.
Now the Rv Park Reviews site told of a coyote crossing the road at Beatty and warned people to watch their small dogs. Sure enough a large coyote ran across the road just before we turned into our rv park, reminding us to keep Molly on a short leash.
We couldn't unhook and so we spent the next two nights in Beatty, or north of it, as the front blasted through and the wind shook our house. Pretty impressive as the fifth wheel and truck weigh over 22000 pounds!
Finally,the wind seemed to abate and we headed for Pahrump, but seemed was the right word as 40 mile per hour gusts hit us sideways and threatened to turn us over. I slowed the rig to 40 and then to thirty and we creep the 40 miles east fighting the crosswind all the way. Turning south on Nevada 160 we put the wind behind us and it was pretty easy to Pahrump.
The drive had been scenic and windy and tempting and we decided we would like to drive this way again. Towns such as Goldfield, Rhyolite and Silver Peak all make rockhounders giddy with prospecting fever! Clea skies.

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