Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Well, another summer has come and gone. School started last week so we've had to get back into the school frame of mind. Happily it has been a pretty smooth transition so far. We thoroughly enjoyed our summer with trips to Arizona, Las Vegas (Big R celebrated his birthday at the Adventuredome), and California for Papa's 60th birthday party. This past weekend we spent some time camping in central Nevada. We saw some interesting sights, fished and enjoyed the beautiful weather in the mountains.And believe it or not, Nevada does have mountains with trees and rivers/creeks! We camped at Pine Creek and Kingston Canyon (No, not THAT Kingston Canyon, the one in NV!) On the way is the town of Austin, NV. We've been through before and noticed a castle perched on the top of a hill but this time we decided to stop and take a closer look.

If you'd like to learn a little more about Stokes Castle click here. Not far past Austin we spotted some wildlife.
Hee Haw-Wild Burro
Some more wild burros

They just stared at us. And we took pictures. Then we continued on. Further on, the road passed by Toquima Cave which contains ancient pictographs. Read about it here. We stopped and hiked about 1/4 mile to the cave. (And back)
Pictographs in Toquima Cave

More Pictographs

Wonder what they mean?

View from the mouth of the cave

Big R at Toquima Cave

MoMo (and Daddy) at Toquima Cave.
After hiking back to the truck we continued on to Pine Creek. When we arrived and were scoping out which site we wanted, we spotted a couple of deer right in the middle of the campground. 
Deer at Pine Creek (look at second tree from right-it has ears! LOL )
We chose an awesome spot and set up camp. Well, all the sites are pretty awesome. Most are adjacent to the creek with plenty of trees for shade. As we were coming in we got to talking with a couple who were camping near us which proved to be lucky. Later, they invited us to dinner. They were expecting their kids and grandkids to be there for dinner but at dinner time they still hadn't arrived. They had a whole Thanksgiving-esque feast prepared and didn't want it to go to waste so we got to enjoy an amazing dinner with them-dutch oven roasted turkey breast, stuffing, salad, rolls, cranberry sauce and peach cobbler for dessert! Yum! Thanks Kim and Glenn!
Fishing in Pine Creek
   We also did some fishing but unfortunately we didn't have a lot of success. The kids got some bites and Daddy caught a couple but they were little guys so they went back into the creek. MoMo was pretty disappointed that we didn't have any fish to cook up for lunch. But we had a campfire and the kids did some metal detecting around the campsite. They found what Big R called his treasures-mostly fishing weights, bullet shells and such but he did find a nickel and a couple of pennies. Plus a 2 euro coin later in Kingston Canyon.
Since we weren't really catching any fish in Pine Creek we decided to try our luck in Kingston Canyon for our last night. We packed up camp and headed back over the Toquima Mountains to Kingston Canyon. In my atlas I noticed that we'd be passing by some hot springs, one called Diana's Punchbowl which sounded very interesting so I suggested we stop and take a look. Now the atlas didn't have any sort of description of the punchbowl so we didn't know precisely what we were looking for. We followed the road out and found hot water flowing but didn't find the source. The actual hot spring. Diana's Punchbowl. Nothing that seemed to fit the name Diana's Punchbowl. Somewhat unimpressed we started heading back to the main road and there was this big hill with a road right up the side. Hubby's got this thing where if he sees a hill  with a road he wants to/needs to drive up it. (And MoMo is right there egging him on to drive up the steepest hills) So seeing the road he figured we'd drive up. When we got to the top we realized the hill WAS the punchbowl! At the top was a huge hole.
Diana's Punchbowl

At the bottom, 30 feet or so down, is steaming hot water. 200 degrees hot according to this site.
So, you know, we stayed well back from the edge because we surely didn't want to fall in and get boiled alive. 
Hello from Diana's Punchbowl

 We made it to Kingston Canyon and we set up camp (again). Glad we have a tent that is super fast to set up and take down! This campground also had sites right along the creek so again we were right next to the water. Further into the canyon there is also a reservoir called Groves Lake. That's where we did most of our fishing in Kingston Canyon. Again, we didn't have much luck fishing. The first evening we went fishing in the lake we could see the fish actually jumping out of the water but they just didn't want any of our worms. There were people fly fishing that did catch a fish or two but we only had worms and didn't catch anything. Still we had a campfire and smores and the kids did metal detecting in out campsite and Big R found the euro coin. The next day we went past the lake to see if other parts of the creek had better fishing. We found a nice spot and Hubby caught a couple trout, though again they were small and went back in the creek. We drove up into the canyon and up Kingston Summit (almost to the top but not quite). The view was incredible.
View to the Notheast from just shy of Kingston Summit
View to the Southwest from just shy of Kingston Summit

We tried Groves Lake again before we had to pack up and head home.The fish seemed to be liking worms more this time. Got some bites but still didn't land any fish. So no fish lunch for us. Maybe next time. But even though we didn't have a lot of luck fishing we had a great time. Exploring. Spotting wildlife and natural wonders. Sitting around the campfire, roasting marshmallows. And we can't wait to do it again.

1 comment:

Grandma said...

What an adventure!! You guys find the funnest places to explore. thanks for sharing.
man, those are such cute kids!!