We here at La Casa de los Replicantes haven’t had a real vacation since our last road trip. That was the time we drove out to the Grand Canyon way back in August, 2010. To be honest, we did go to Las Vegas last winter, but that was really only an extended weekend, so that doesn’t count.
Since I now have buckets of free time to do so, and a few more weeks of favorable weather, I decided to use an upcoming birthday as an excuse, and made arrangements to once again wheel off into the wilderness, with my usual traveling companion in tow. (Not literally, of course. In fact, he did most of the driving.)
Our trek lasted almost a week, taking us quite literally to the highest of highs and lowest of lows. Even though we’ve since returned, I will recap an easily-digestible few days at a time rather than attempt to relate every detail in one single eye-watering post.
Our plan for the first day was quite straightforward. We would depart San Diego in the morning, after, of course, I enjoyed a complimentary birthday breakfast at our favorite pancake house. And gas up the car. And hit the ATM. And buy snacks. And… and… and…
Anwyay, we eventually did get going. The trip toward the mountains was fairly uneventful.
Meh, it’s fire season. Santa Ana Winds and all that.
We eventually got onto old Highway 395 and headed north through the High Desert and the Sierra Nevada mountains.
The sun set and we drove through the darkness, eventually reaching South Lake Tahoe late that night. Though the relatives I’d come to visit had gone to bed, we travelers were famished from being on the road all day. So we walked across the state line to explore the casino resorts for possible eateries. Eventually we settled on the American River Cafe, an all-night eatery themed on the biome of the Sierra foothills, featuring an indoor waterfall and stream, and artificial aspen trees.
The next day, we got a glimpse of the beautiful lake itself. The largest lake in California, and the second deepest in the US (at about 1,600 feet.) It was once known for its stunning clarity, but since the colonization of the area, runoff bearing things like silt and terrestrial nutrients has clouded it somewhat. It is still an impressive sight. Why, I could gaze at it for hours.
I wouldn’t dare swim in it at this time of year— it’s much too cold, although oddly enough, it never quite gets cold enough to freeze.
I spent the rest of the day catching up with relatives, while my traveling companion (sensibly) went to hunt for secondhand shops. That expedition was a bust, and so we all met up at the end of the day to enjoy a meal of pork roasted in pineapple— in an actual, hollowed-out pineapple— which was delicious. That was followed with a few games of Elder Sign.
And a delightful time was had by all.