No Love lost in Lovelock

Rest Stop. Jackpot, Nevada  ©David Gardner

Rest Stop. Jackpot, Nevada ©David Gardner

September 7

This marks the start of a new photo trip. Over the next two months, Mary and I will be traveling through parts of Idaho, Montana, South Dakota an Utah. I kind of lost interest in blogging toward the end of my last road trip, and I have been spending time trying to figure out my reasons for wanting to blog in the first place. What I am thinking now is that it can serve to help me digest what I have done on a particular day of shooting. Often I will shoot a new subject or area, and after downloading, not really go over the work for some time. If I don’t write about the images quickly, I may forget some of the impressions that drew me to the place to begin with.

The start of our trip was delayed about a week because of a leak in the black tank of our motorhome. It wasn’t a big leak, but it had to be dealt with before leaving. I had to scramble around to find someone to fix this problem and it resulted in our having to cut out a visit to Mt. Lassen in Oregon and a few days in Idaho visiting my cousins.

So we left San Francisco around 9 am this morning and headed north over the Golden Gate Bridge. Not only was the Bay Bridge closed for several days for earthquake work, the north route is visually a much nicer way to drive. Getting back on highway 80 for the trek through the sierra’s, we soon began to notice some strange vehicles being towed behind trucks going west. The trucks, and quite a few cars going that way, were also covered in what looked like white dust. I realized these were returnee’s from Burning Man that wrapped up Sunday night. The white stuff the result of the alkali wind storms that are common on the plya at Black Rock. We saw a giant propane powered snail, some really odd looking rocket cars and even a giant Groucho type mustache, nose and glasses atop a jeep, complete with bald head. We knew we had reached the junction where returning attendee’s hit 80, because now instead of seeing the vehicles going west, they began passing us as we drove east through Nevada, each and every one of them covered in alkali dust. On the backs of many cars was the Burning Man symbol to further clue us in.

Just past the town of Lovelock, we pulled into Rye Patch Reservoir state recreation area. As soon as I opened the motorhome door, I was enveloped with the desert dry perfumed scent of sage. I always forget how wonderful an aroma it is. The only other experience that comes close is that of smelling the smells of a redwood forest for the first time. Rye Patch is a nice little camping area. The reservoir of course was quite low, as is every water pocket in the west, but being the day after Labor Day, the place was only sparsely occupied. There were a few egrets, a smattering of herons and a selection of other waterfowl I couldn’t get close enough to identify to keep us company. We chose a campground in an overflow area above the real campground because of it’s higher location which gave us a nice evening view of the lowering light over the desert.

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