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Portland, Oregon
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Terry & Dave Taylor

Loneliest Highway

Fallon, Nevada: NOTE - We have several days of hard driving to reach our goal: Sacramento and the Olympic Trials for Track & Field! First, a comment on last night. Just as we were ready for bed, the City of Salina, Utah, blasted fireworks into the sky! The show lasted one hour and it was so fantastic, we kept thinking "this MUST be the Grand Finale"... but it wasn't. We asked our campground neighbor why Salina celebrated the 4th on the 5th and though I cannot repeat his actual answer, we felt it was because the 4th fell on a Sunday and we were in Utah. 'Nuff said. Just as we pulled out of town, we saw a coyote crossing the highway, with a nice fat jackrabbit in his jaws! Breakfast is served!

We followed Highway 50 all day, and have traveled this road before. It is called the Loneliest Highway, and travels through desert, but is some of the prettiest scenery in America. We crossed into Nevada and entered the Pacific Time Zone for the first time in 76 days. We stopped in Ely (pronounced E-Lee... as in Robert), Nevada, for diesel (58 gallons, $111). Frequent readers will note that we really didn't "need" fuel, but wanted to fill-up as we were unsure of where we were going and wanted to have fuel when we arrived! We pulled over in the parking area of the truck stop; I fired-up the generator, turned-up the air conditioner and made sandwiches in 90-degree desert heat. Quite refreshing, and a lovely meal too - I added avocado and sliced tomatoes to the usual sandwich ingredients for a wonderful luncheon.

The Loneliest Highway  The Loneliest Highway
My view today: The Loneliest Highway (Photo taken through the windscreen)

Continuing on The Loneliest Road, we stopped at the Hickison Petroglyhs and enjoyed the BLM Interpretive Site. The Hickison Petroglyhs are thousands of years old - and are easily accessible via a half-mile trail.

Hickison Petroglyhs
Hickison Petroglyh site

Hickison Petroglyhs  Hickison Petroglyhs
This is the face of a bird (?) and a close-up of the eye (?)

Hickison Petroglyhs  Hickison Petroglyhs
Random drawings. I don't get it, but still respect the art

On the flats between Austin and Fallon we were buzzed by a US Navy fighter jet!!! Top Gun pilots are trained at the Fallon Naval Air Station. This part of Highway 50 criss-crosses the Pony Express route. At Cold Springs there are remains of a Pony Express station. The Express operated for 18 months in 1860-61, carrying news and letters from St. Joseph, Missouri to Sacramento, California - where the packet was taken by sea to San Francisco. Eighty riders rode through 190 stations over 1,966 miles in ten days! In October 1861, the transcontinental telegraph was completed and the Pony Express was out of business.

Loneliest Road in America  Loneliest Phone
Lonely signs

Sand Mountain, Nevada
Sands Mountain, Nevada

We stopped at the Sands Mountain Recreation Area (home of the Loneliest - solar powered - Phone) and thought about staying the night in the recreation area, but there was a terrible sand storm looming, so we forged on. The temperature was one hundred degrees! Lightning was striking all around us and the wind was blowing us off the road!

We pulled over on the out-skirts of Fallon, Nevada and waited it out behind the shelter of a convenience store! It was an awful storm and we didn't want the blowing sand to give Our Intrigue a new paint job! Finally, after about one hour, we were able to continue into Fallon and camp for the night at a RV park in town. I had started a loaf of French bread in the afternoon and we enjoyed grilled chicken breasts, steamed asparagus and tossed salad while watching the Tour de France re-cap show.

DT drove 478 miles today!

RV Park: Hub Totel RV Park (not a typo!)

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