Wednesday, March 16, 2011

12-15 March 2011 - Yard sales and desert hikes

We spent Saturday in Overton going to yard sales.  They had one of those community yard sale days and we couldn't resist.  Bought a brand new set of heavy duty tire chains for fifteen dollars and a bunch of misc. stuff. Susan got some stuff too.  I almost bought a Honda Gold Wing for $200.  Everything was straight on it but it had lots of minor problems and the clutch was out of it.  They'd left in outside a lot and it had a lot of weather damage as well.  We could have hauled it home on the trailer but then I'd have had to ride mine while Susan drove and we decided it was going to be just too much hassle.  They had a horse for sale to but people are giving them away back in Montana.  We stopped at the parts store and picked up another thermostat for truck then spent afternoon in library. Internet was very frustrating.  We've seen faster dial-up service.  They must have been downloading something.  We headed home before dark.

The last sale of the day ... This was a charity sale where people donated stuff to sell.  We got there late and they wanted to get rid of the leftovers so everything was a dollar as much as you could stuff in a bag.  Susan and I ended up with a bag each then had to buy some stouter bags to carry the stuff home on.  I felt sorry for the motorcycle that evening.

Sunday we decided to go on a hike and explore an area just west of us. We started out early in the morning so we'd be finished before it got hot in the afternoon.  Yeah, right!  Seven miles (and several hours) later we were home, thirsty and with sore feet.  The dog was even showing signs of fatigue.  One area we went through had places where the ground just gave way like there were a bunch of sinkholes in the area.  We were glad to be out of there.

I decided to stop and make a bow/drill fire using locally obtained materials.  I didn't get the job done much to my embarrassment.  I was close several times but never got the coal needed.  My main problem was in the socket.  My spindle kept burning it's way into it and about the time things would get good and hot I couldn't overcome the friction in the hand socket.  It was a lesson in humility. 

One of our desert "neighbors."

What we thought was a couple of washes turned out to be a series of them with several that were very deep.  We planned on making a large loop during our hike but it ended up being much larger than anticipated.

The dog was getting very thirsty so we began searching for water.  We found some in the bottom of a deep wash.  The dog first drank, then waded, then drank then laid down in the water then drank some more.

I thought we'd just walk down the wash and get back where we parked our biccyles but that wasn't to be the case.  In the bottom we hit loose, wet sand.  After two steps I was in almost to my knees so we decided to get out of the wash.

Odie and I led the way up the side.  I had found a lariet rope on the first part of our hike so I untied it from the rock and unburied the rest of it and brought it with us.  It was a good thing I did.

The walk up was rather steep and we estimate it to have been about an 80 to 100 foot climb.  Where we found water for the dog was at valley floor under the flat faced cliffs in the upper right corner of the photo.  In the lower right corner of the photo you can see where I stomped out a base to stand on while I rested.

The wall had a crust on it but the higher we got the more unstable it became.  The problem was that I tore the slope up going up and Susan couldn't get footing to follow after me.  The dog of course, had no such problem.  I would go up a ways then throw the rope to Susan and she'd use it to climb up to me then we'd repeat the process.  The bad thing was that when the dog wanted to rest it would come up and lay on my feet expecting me to keep her from sliding down.  She almost took both of us down once.

We had to go over a hump about ten feet from the top and I couldn't get footing to do it so I helped Susan up over it then whe made it to the top and threw the rope down to me.  She sat down and braced her feet, passed the rope around behind her and held on while I pulled myself up to the top.  Just past the tip of Susan's finger, at the bottom of the wash is where the water was that the dog was drinking.

The next canyon was much worse than this one.

We did take time to stop and smell (and take pictures of) the flowers on our hike.

This one was really fuzzy with new growth.

We ended up hiking almost to the highway then taking a powerline right-of-way road around the large canyon before heading back East to our campsite.  We'd been on this one with bicycles and new of a good rest place at the bottom of a canyon.  The shade felt very, very good after our time in the sun.  We were out of water but had a light snack for energy.

We folowed some powerlines back to the houses at Stewart's Point then though about taking a shortcut across to the bicycles.  We climbed tot he top of a hill and saw nothing but more washes between uis and the bikes so we turned around and headed for the road.  The distance was longer but the terrain was level.  We'd had enough of climbing out of washes for the day.

When we got back to camp we went wading in the lake to cool off a bit. 

We declared Monday a day for domestic duties (dish washing, etc.) and goofing off..  I put the thermostat in the truck in the afternoon.

Tuesday I spent half the day writing,  Susan took her kayak out to tool around on the lake awhile then we spent a little time in the water to cool off some more.  We began putting things away so we could change locations Wednesday.  I've been waiting on a package from home and for a motorcycle tire I ordered last week.  Once they're here we'll head out to a new location for a change of scenery.

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