After departing Crater Lake, and stopping for supplies in Klamath Falls, we continued south to Carson City (near Reno). This is the same route I took exactly 5 years prior, making a pit-stop in Reno to visit my niece Madeline, who was in school there. There was the added bonus of her sister, Natalie, who flew in for homecoming weekend. The three of us attended the football game together, and also did the drive to… and around Lake Tahoe.
Since John had not been to Lake Tahoe, I shared that experience with him as well. Tahoe is one incredibly clear and beautiful lake. I lived in California for several years, and spent time in the Tahoe area often… almost always on one of many area ski slopes.
Our favorite spot was Emerald Bay. While there we hiked down to the lake for a peek at Vikingsholm, a Scandinavian style mansion completed in 1929. There’s a bit of history on the place via the blue link. There’s also a bit of history on the island here… Fannette Island.
The following day we continued south along the eastern side of the Sierra Mountain Range. First stop… again, repeating my trek from five years ago… Bodie State Park. This is a very cool ghost town and, like my first visit five years prior, deserving of a post all it’s own. That will be my next post. Moving on from there… and also a repeat of five years ago… we got waylaid in Mammoth Lakes for several days. Last time it was an axle and bearing problem. This time it was brakes. (This is after we were delayed in Bellingham for a brake problem. 3K later we were supposedly good to go and on the road. Obviously not! 😡)
Anyway, the good news is my ol’ buddies at Goodyear, as busy as they were, fit us in. We camped for nearly a week at their back door, waiting for parts. I can’t say enough about how kind and accommodating they were, not once, but twice! If you’re ever in the vicinity of Mammoth Lakes and find yourself in need of new tires, brakes or whatever… stop in and tell them Fran sent you!
Thank goodness for Zippy, our trusty tow car (Honda CRV). While stuck there we made the most of our time. We spent a day driving back north to do the June Lakes Loop (actually three lakes) and Mono Lake. At June Lake, with no restrictions, we were able to fly our new drone. We still have a lot of learning to do with this, like camera settings, but I’m amazed at the quality of the images at factory settings. If anything they are a bit too saturated, but I’ll get that figured out soon. We’re loving it enough to give it a name… “Hawkeye”!
Next up was Mono Lake. My visit there five years prior was very brief, so I was glad for a bit more time to check it out. Best known for it’s Tufa Towers (calcium carbonate limestone formations), it is also the annual home to two million migratory birds who flock there to feed on brine shrimp and alkali flies that thrive in and around these waters.
The one thing I really wanted to do, and got skunked on both times I “camped” here, was seeing Devil’s Postpile. I don’t know why, with the weather so clear and sunny this time, but the road was closed once again! Since we had time on our hands we drove to, and did a bit of hiking around the several lakes right there in Mammoth Lakes. Most everything was closed, but it looked like a great place for camping, boating and fishing.
While waiting for parts in Mammoth Lakes we booked a room and drove Tioga Pass into Yosemite where we spent two days hiking and… as might be expected… gathering lots of images. So, after my Bodie State Park post, I’ll be sharing a bit of Yosemite. Soon! Promise!! 😁