Cross middle section of the US to California trip 2016 travel blog

The shack is in the middle of the picture

The road is straight.

Today is Jim's birthday! Sorry no cake or birthday pie. Actually, he had pie the other day when we ate out. Then at Capitol Reef National Park, there was a store selling homemade goods, so he bought a cinnamon roll which we shared and a cherry pie (not my thing).

We drove from Kanarraville, Utah to Baker, Nevada which is just over the border. Tomorrow we drive through the desert, so wanted to stop here and start fresh in the am. We gained an hour today as we are now on Pacific time. We stopped at Walmart in Cedar City to replenish groceries, etc. They had a really weird traffic pattern that messed up our Rand McNally GPS. So we had to turn around and come back by the interstate exit ramps. When we came to the stoplight, our two lanes went to the left side in order to go straight. The lanes coming toward us were on our right. it was so strange.

Everything was barren and it was so desolate. It was pretty in its own way, but no where near the beauty we have seen. There were hills in places and flats in others. There were desert like shrubs and then 2-3 feet tall trees spotted throughout. There were lots of mountains in the distance and they were pretty. Some had snow on top. The San Francisco Mountains were off to our right and the Wah Wah Mts to our left.

The road was good most of the way and there was almost no traffic after we got away from Cedar City until close to the Nevada border. Part of the road went for 89 miles with no services, no gas, no restaurants, nothing. Only one car passed us the whole time, and we met just a few cars, campers, and one tractor trailer. There were a few cows around the middle of that stretch. About 43 miles east of the border, they were doing roadwork, and it looked like they might be adding a lane. If so, I have no idea why! We passed a couple of Horse Crossing signs, but didn't see any wild horses. We did have a jack rabbit cross in front of us. One short section of the road felt like we were on railroad tracks, but it didn't last too long. We went over some strange painted lines on the road that looked like the Cattle Guards to keep the free range cattle in. I was just guessing that maybe the cows would see them and think they were the metal grates and not cross them. I googled it and I was right. So in places they had real grates and others they just painted the lines.

We arrived in Baker and stayed at the Whispering Elms Motel and RV Park. Gas up the road was 2.78. We paid 2.49 in Milford. Although it is more than home, it does not surprise me as it is pretty desolate around here.

We drove up to the Great Basin visitor's center, but decided not to take the scenic road up towards the summit. It is only open 2/3 of the way and the ranger said it was quite winding with steep drop offs. I've had enough of those.

Now, on to the campground... We arrived and the note on the office door said to go to the house to register. We knocked on the door, and a shirtless man came and said the other manager was on duty and to go around to the back. We did so, and there was only a shack out back and we didn't think that was it. So we saw a maid cleaning the hotel rooms and asked her. Yup, it was the shack. The man came out and let us choose our site. He actually was quite friendly, but I was still thinking this was weird. So we hooked up as we had actually reserved this time, and then another lady stopped by to see if we were all set and I felt a little better. She said to come up to the bar after 4 and register. It actually is very pleasant here. The weather was only in the low 70's but when the sun was out it was hot, but nice. We played some dominoes. It is quiet, and there are a dozen or so campers here. The showers didn't look that great, but its the first time in a while that water hasn't come out of the shower to the changing area. Jim wasn't quite so lucky, but he said it was still better than a lot.

We usually leave the side door and front windows open if its nice and not buggy. So we were inside eating dinner and all of a sudden there was a cat in our camper. Jim jumped more than I did. It made me laugh. I had read some of the reviews when I was having weird feelings about the place, and I saw a picture someone posted of the cat that came to visit them. A little later, after we shut the door, the cat jumped in through the driver side window and Jim shooed him away.

On toward Yosemite tomorrow, a full day's drive.

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