Lay of the land travel blog

The lights of Reno welcome you

This part of California looks like a scene out of "Tremors"

Prospector looks for gold outside a chocolate factory near Carson City

Entered a raffle to win this classic setup.

Welcome to Reno, the biggest little city in the world. At least that is how it is advertized on the huge neon sign that spans the main drag downtown.

But before Reno we had to drive out of California. Northern California wasn't all I had expected. The mountains were beautiful, but there wasn't the lush greenery I associate with mountains like we have in the east. The mountain valleys were barren, better suited for ranching than farming.

Driving toward the Nevada border, we crossed a vast valley similar to the setting for the movie "Tremors." The landscape was brown with a few desolate towns. The whole area was surrounded by mountains. I fear the scenery won't get any better until we reach Colorado.

Even Reno wasn't impressive as we approached the city. The land surrounding Reno is high desert and not at all attractive.

We drove 30 miles south of Reno to Carson City, the state capital. There we settled in at a casino RV park. Nearly every casino offers a campground for RVs. Guess it is thier way to lure customers.

Being early in the afternoon, we drove over the mountain from Carson City to see Lake Tahoe. We stopped in the touristy South Lake Tahoe to shop and have dinner. Then we returned to Reno.

Reno is in the midst of its Hot August Nights, a festival highlighted by classic and antique cars. We roamed among the cars from the 50's, 60's and 70's. It was a time to remember our youth.

Distance traveled: 177 miles

Tomorrow: Crossing Nevada

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