June 26, 2015
I got my red four –legged, studly SUV fired up and on the road before seven in the morning. It was such a beautiful cool morning that I almost turned around and went back for my three-legged mule that has served me so well in the past. But I stuck with my original decision and was eventually glad that I had done so.
To get out of California one has to travel over the Sierra Nevada’s. Whenever I do this I always ask myself why am I bothering to leave because, honestly, on a summer day there is no place prettier than the Sierras. I stopped at Cook Station to have nice breakfast among the sugar pines, just to delay having to come out of the mountains. But alas, one has to go over the mountain to see what one can see.
Capels Lake on Hwy 88 in the Sierras
Once I cleared the Sierras there was a whole lot of the Nevada high desert to cross. I left Carson City on Highway 50 and as I exited town I kept seeing yellow signs warning of horses. Then there was one of those portable caution signs, again warning of free range horses. I thought enough already, the deer never heed those signs so why should the horses. And then on cue, there was a herd of wild horses with their young colts eating on the side of the highway. I understand you can adopt one if you want to take care of it. I find it nice that there are still horses out there roaming free like they have for hundreds of years. And donkeys. There may even be a few camels left but those tend to go pretty fast.
I had to stop for gas in Lovelock, NV. Another thing I will ever get use to is how far apart service stations are out in Nevada. Once I had gotten my gas I wandered over to Lovers’ Lock Park. Here, people put a lock on the chains around the walkways and throw away the key. This supposedly signifies their eternal love or that they had a lock that did not sell at the last garage sale. There are a lot of them. And other than this and gas, there is really no reason to stop in Lovelock, NV.
There are a lot of locks. Where’s the love?
I continued heading East on Interstate 80 passing any number of houses of the rising sun that were fully reported on during a previous trip. It was good to see that they were all still in business. Apparently there is not an I phone app for that….yet.
By noon the temperature was toying with triple digits and I was so glad I was in my air conditioned Wuss Mobile. I did the prescribed 75 mph in air conditioned comfort until I got to Elko, NV where I went in search of….the world’s largest dead white bear. I found it. Having at one point driven 1500 miles to see the world’s second largest ball of twine, this seemed like a coup: 500 miles to see the world’s largest dead white, bear with no obvious contenders. What a satisfying day.
How big is it? It is the biggest. That is all that matters.
It does beg the question of what the hell a white bear is doing in Elko. I try not to think of such things.
Elko seemed like such a wild west kind of town I decided to get a room at the Stockman’s’ Hotel and spend the night. Other than the addition of air conditioning I don’t think the Stockman’s’ has changed a lot in the last 60 or 70 years. Just to my liking, though.
I wandered around town and found these pretty flowers. So that is where it will have to end for today. I saw my share of beauty and now have the knowledge that there is one big ass bear in Elko and a lot of useless locks in Nevada. Not a bad day, as these things go.