Last weekend we took our last dry-run to do a variety of things:
- make sure the truck could handle the 4000 ft climb – it did admirably
- try out bringing the bikes with the rig – no problem
- bring more items we’ll need for the long haul – filled up the truck again!
- review what was already in the van, removing temporary things – we brought back almost as much as we took
- assess the storage and adjust our assumptions about what we can bring – no big surprises
We picked up the fiver in San Martin (the next time we do this it will be the last time!). Ted backed right up and locked in on the pin on the first try. We drove to Sacramento and then up Hwy 50 to Ghost Mountain Ranch in Pollock Pines. (The resort’s claim to fame is being the set for The Virginian. Pollock Pines was a significant Pony Express transfer stop.) We had a great, private, quiet site with tall trees, good star gazing, and hiking trails leading from our door.
We took the bikes out on a trail along El Dorado Ditch, an irrigation canal, to Long Canyon Forebay, a beautiful lake reflecting the trees adorning its shores. Abbey did a great job keeping up — actually she led the way. Which worked well until she stopped dead in front of me, I braked suddenly, and Ted slammed into me. He got the worst of it, flying down an embankment, I got hung up on a stump, and Abbey wondered what the heck we were doing. Note to self: the decision not to wear helmets, because it was a meandering woodsy trail, was not a good one. Dusted off, a little bike maintenance, and we were on our way again.
It was a lovely weekend and we ended up feeling pretty good about where we are in our preparation of the rig.
The trees were beginning to turn and we drove home in a lovely rain. Rain is so direly needed in California and it looks like it may be a wet winter. We’re glad for California — but not feeling too bad about dodging the rain ourselves. Desert Southwest, here we come!