Saline Valley Road Turnoff
Ken had to hydrate his engine
Reading material in the common area
Soaking in hot water on a cold, clear, moonlight-filled desert night is a wonderful way to pass an hour. I studied the stars for a while and evesdropped on two guys talking about fishing in and around Prince of Wales island. When feeling sufficiently cooked, Ken and I meandered back down to our camp where, despite the cold temps, I slept snug as a bug in a rug. Mind you, I was cloaked head-to-toe in fleece and was wrapped up in two sleeping bags.
Sunday morning, we whipped up scrambled eggs and bacon and headed out for Saline Point. Saline Point isn't much of a hill. It took us about an hour to walk up it, but the few hundred feet we hiked up gave us a better view of the valley. After a bit, we headed back into camp and a few of us soaked, a few of us drank beer, but we all turned into slothy lumps positioned in our camp chairs to get maximum warmth from the sun. Eventually a few of us decided to hike up a hill on the other side of our camp. We did that, took a few photos, ate fudge, and went back. On our return, S very excitedly pointed out a Shreik. Shreiks are small birds that sometimes pick up lizards and impale them on bushes so that they can eat them later.
Ken at the dish washing station
After getting back to camp, we checked out the activities in the pools and jumped in one that only had one other soaker in it. However, we were quickly joined by several others and the high spirits of the tub culminated in a rendition of "You Are My Sunshine." Oddly enough, my lyrics differed from everybody else's on the second stanza.
The New Year's Eve part of our evening was very low-key. We made tri-tip and quinoa, popped open a few bottles of wine, and Ken & I and S & B were all happily snoozing by 10 (it may even have been as early as 9). I woke up briefly at midnight to the sound of whoops and cheers and quickly regained my slumber. I am fortunate not to have been disturbed at 2 am by the Polish-Canadian man serenading his wife with U2 songs.
Per S, the only cactus worth photographing
An absolutely unbeatable way to begin this Year of the Boar.
This morning we packed up camp, said our good-byes, drove the 0.25 miles to the Palm Springs, talked to another guy from Alaska, reduced the air in our tires to 18 psi, and drove back out the way we came (the washboard ride was noticeably smoother). We stopped in Bishop at Bill's Bar-B-Q where I had a lovely shredded beef BBQ sandwich (the sauce was not too tangy, not too sweet, and just hit that BBQ-craving spot). I said my good-byes to S & B and Ken and I enjoyed an uneventful drive back into Reno.