Wednesday morning we load up the Jeep for a day trip to Yosemite. Although I have lived in California my whole life, I've never been there! I know that sounds impossible, but something always caused a change in plans. It's a beautiful day, Tioga Pass is open, we have plenty of time, and...
......we have a flat tire.
The dash light came on Tuesday while we were out, we added some air in Lee Vining (no air in Bridgeport), and the light never came on again. Apparently a VERY slow leak. One of our neighbors stops to chat while Bill uses the compressor to fill the tire and says Gardnerville is the closest place to get it fixed. It's only 65 miles north, we were there the other day.
So the Yosemite curse continues, and we instead return north for the tire repair. Oh well, we need some things from a big grocery store, it's still a beautiful day......we enjoy the vibrant fall colors, stop along the West Walker River on the way back. Yosemite isn't going anywhere. I will see it!
Thunder storms are forecast for Friday, and with a couple 8000 ft passes to cross I prefer to travel on Thursday instead.
Rains the whole 65 miles to Crowley Lake. The wind blows. Every mile from north of Lee Vining. Still, it's such a short trip, and the blowing clouds and muted landscape give us a whole new, and still spectacular, view of this amazing area. 30 minutes after we arrive, the sun comes out :-)
Crowley Lake RV Park is 60% park models and long-terms units. It, and the combination gas station, market, pizza eatery a block away, are the only commercial places in a "town" of dozens of large, beautiful homes. The Aspens and Cottonwoods are really showing off here - the whole place is bright yellow and chartreuse.
|Crowley Lake RV Park, all about the location|
While in Bridgeport we kept hearing weird noises under the rig. We both checked a couple times - thunk, chink, thunk - we both agreed it sounded like the chassis, but no idea "what". No sounds on our drive, and none since we set up. We're convinced both the slide and the noises were because we somehow got "tweaked" when we backed in, even though we were level.
And I have to admit it is nice to have the extra couple feet of space :-/
It rains a little overnight, but the thunderstorms never materialize. It's much cooler, but the remaining clouds are clinging to the tops of the highest peaks, not blocking the sunny skies overhead. We're headed to Devils Post Pile near Mammoth Lake. Bill has never seen it and it's been decades for me. We're both looking forward to the unique columnar wonder.
The entrance road is steep and narrow, but going down first seems to minimize the height "issue", and it's a lovely drive. Even though the "pile" is smaller than we both expected, it is still an amazing sight.
|The road to Devils Post Pile|
|Geological wonder near Mammoth Lakes|
|Amazing natural columns|
|Perfect weather to enjoy the trail|
Laurel writes Raven and Chickadee and we have been "reading each other" for awhile now. Although I knew they were in June Lake, it is such a wonderful surprise to meet her on the trail - it's a very small world. Eric is waiting for her up top, and we don't want to keep her so we say our good-byes for now. We're both heading south in a couple days and hopefully our paths will cross again. Gotta love this wonderful world of bloggers!
After lunch in the Village we take the scenic loop back to the highway. Bill has been looking at the map and suggests a side road near the air strip. There's a hatchery and maybe a place to fish. The hatchery is closed, but we see signs for a Hot Creek Geological Site and decide that sounds worth a look.
I'll let you decide from the photos if it was worth it :-)
|Hot Creek Geothermal Pools|
|Geysers erupt here during seismic activity|
|Steam follows water as it leaves the pools|
|Surrounding canyon walls|
Another beautiful place, completely quiet, with no one else around, we drive right to the water. It would be perfect for swimming, still heated here by the hot springs, but for the same reason, it's not a fishing spot.