Tag Archives: nevada

Great Western Road Trip, Day 19

 

Current Location: Salt Lake City, Utah

Today’s Song: This Will Destroy You – They Move On Tracks of Never-Ending Light

This song makes me think of the miles and miles of desert I drove through today, with the promise of mountains in all directions. I expected it to be a little monotonous, but it was actually a beautiful landscape surrounded by the Toiyabe Range and the Ruby Mountains. The contrast between the dry salt flats and the snow-capped mountains just beyond was stunning.

The drive out of Reno was quite lovely this morning, winding up through the foothills.

I put on the 20-hour audiobook for T. J. Klune’s Wolfsong (which I have read before and I know it is absolutely amazing) and this helped the miles fly by. The only downside is that the book will put you through the emotional wringer, and had me crying several times during the drive. I made a couple of stops along the way to admire the landscape.

I stopped in Winnemucca, Nevada for a quick breakfast/lunch at a lovely little diner. Once again, Yelp steers me to good places. As long as you know that you can’t really rely on the ratings for any place with less than a couple of dozen reviews, it’s a fantastic resource.

I rolled into Salt Lake City at 4:30 PM and checked into my hotel for the night, a Hyatt House. I’ve never stayed in one of these before and it’s a nice step up from a Hyatt Place, geared to those spending several nights in one place.

Dinner was at Red Rock Brewery, an easy walk from the hotel. Their beers are quite good, and the warm goat cheese salad really hit the spot.

Tomorrow the trip continues. This will be an interesting leg, SLC to Denver but clipping the southwestern corner of Wyoming then driving into the Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area, then overland across northwestern Colorado. I expect this is going to be a long one, so I’m going to try to get on the road as early as possible.

Miles Driven Today: 513 miles

Time Driving Today: 7:19

Total Miles Driven: 3,542 miles

Total Time Driving: 75:35

Great Western Road Trip, Day 18

Current Location: Reno, Nevada

Today’s Song: Kathleen Edwards – Goodnight California

This is such a great song that sets up a nice groove. This is another case where the emphasis is less on the song lyrics and more evocative of the feeling of driving through the Central Valley and up into the Sierra Nevadas.

I started the day in Manteca, California, heading out north on California 99 to Carson Pass Highway. It’s a good hour just to get to the mountains, but the loom ahead of you the entire time and provide a lovely backdrop and contrast to the flat farmlands all around you.

Then it was into the Sierra Nevada Mountains, and wow, that is just spectacular. The road goes up, up, up from the valley to Carson Pass.

The geology of the area is quite unique, as my friend Neowolf pointed out. It provided a nice place to take a break and enjoy the view.

There are some interesting-looking resorts up there, and I am sure that the skiing is pretty impressive as well…providing you can get to the resorts. I saw a lot of “Chains Required” signs waiting to be used and Ford mentioned that the drive can get quite exciting, what with the avalanche risk and all.

After the hours of mountain driving, it was time for a stop in South Lake Tahoe for lunch and an opportunity to enjoy the local brews.

The trip out of the mountains from there was surprisingly quick, though the views were quite impressive descending down the eastward slopes.

I checked into my hotel in Reno (a Hyatt Place, the first of a long line of Hyatts this week – all free! ????). On my friend Rifka’s advice, I sought out one of the local breweries before dinner to check out their offerings. They were all quite good!

Then it was off to meet Tyco and a bunch of other staff from Biggest Little Fur Con, a convention that started just a few years ago here and quickly blew up into 5,000 or more attendees.

Dinner was lovely and the opportunity to chat with these good folks was welcome. They’re a damn smart bunch, and the convention has a good organization behind it. After dinner Tyco was kind enough to provide a tour of the Grand Sierra Resort’s convention facilities with some background on how the space is used and the convention’s relationship with the hotel. After seeing all of this I am not remotely surprised the convention has grown as quickly as it has. The GSR is an ideal venue for a furry convention! I definitely hope to attend next year.

Tomorrow it’s back on the road for the long drive to Salt Lake City, Utah. This is a part of the country I have never seen before so I look forward to seeing some new terrain.

Miles Driven Today: 215 miles

Time Driving Today: 5:11

Total Miles Driven: 3,029 miles

Total Time Driving: 68:16