September 18-19, 2014:
It was one of our longest, most beautiful and most remote travel days ever. A few miles north of Lakeview, we turned onto route 140 east and for close to 200 miles there was nothing but high desert country, barbed wire, cows and wild life. I know they call route 50 in Nevada the "loneliest road", but I can't image it being as remote as this road. It was really beautiful though with a really stunning uphill climb to Dougherty summit, where I stopped for a photo next to a trail for a hang glider takeoff point.
|Long straight uphill to the clouds|
Route 140 travels through the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge, lots of BLM land and the Fort McDermitt Indian Reservation before intersecting route 195 south to Winnemucca. Once on route 195 the valley was filled with haze that was obscuring the distant mountain ranges. We eventually found out that this is smoke from the forest fire in Weed, California.
We arrived at the Hi-Desert RV Park around 2:30 and set up in a full hookup campsite. It is located in the town, just off interstate 80, lots of amenities, pool, store, cable TV and free WiFi and most importantly they accept the Passport America discount rate. After setting up, we took a quick tour of Winnemucca and ate dinner at Chihuahua's Grill and Cantina which was very good. Winnemucca is the classic old Nevada Casino town with several Casino's, Hotels, cheap Motels, seedy looking bars and even a Brothal.
|Hi-Desert RV entrance|
|Indian motif on street posts|
|Mural on downtown Casino|
|Wild West Saloon sign|
|Chamber of Commerce building|
|Cheers Bar back door|
|Sun Dance Casino|
|Huge log washed up on a Crescent City California|
beach and was donated to Winnemucca for
this roadside marker
|Interesting comment about early Winnemucca|
|License plate caught my attention, may attract|
police also ?
|Old Winnemucca Hotel is for sale|
We were delighted on Friday to see the smoke mostly gone, could see the surrounding mountains and blue sky. We went to the Winnemucca Museum which is another excellent museum loaded with great stuff. The woman there explained a number of exhibits and was very knowledgable and courteous. They had some very rare unusual cars on display which surprised me, I hadn't expected that.
|A past sheriff of Winnemucca|
|Rare old cars in museum|
|"NO Skid" tire with it spelled in tread|
|1911 Brush Runabout car|
|Old carved wooden Indian figures|
that once stood in front of a Casinos
|Prehistoric bones in museum|
|Old wagon in yard|
|Old trucks in yard behind the museum|
The town of Winnemucca was named for Chief Winnemucca of the Paiute tribe, also called "Winnemucca the younger" and "Bad Face". He distrusted white settlers and was an active war chief. He had a daughter, Sara Winnemucca, who became a quite famous activist, educator and writer. A statue of her is in the US Capital building in Washington DC.
|Chief Winnemucca's headdress|
We then did something unusual, we went to Long John Silvers for lunch. I had said that I actually liked their fish although I haven't had any in decades. Twinkles was very upset by this fact, but decided that we would go so she could prove to me the error of my ways. She ordered one "token" piece of fish for herself. It was great, even better tasting than I remembered and Twinkles even very painfully admitted that it was good, but continued to scold me for eating something that horribly unhealthy. I can't win !
I had seen many handbills in downtown windows for a concert featuring a musician, David Jacob Strain, on Friday evening at the "Martin Hotel" which is a historic Basque restaurant in Winnemucca. When I saw that he had taught guitar at Jorma Kaukonen's Fur Peace Ranch I knew he had to be someone special. I bought a ticket and the show was really great ! He is an incredible blues guitar player with a good voice, good stories to tell and great stage presence. He was accompanied by Bob Beach on harmonica who was equally great. One of the best concerts I have seen in a long time. The concerts are put on every few months by a volunteer organization and the Martin Hotel allows them to use a private back room.
Saturday morning it's back on the road, route 80 east, to a favorite place of mine, Elko, Nevada.
Hopefully no smoke;
Twinkles and Slick