Last Tuesday, Chris picked me up at the Reno airport after my solo trip to Florida and whisked me away to our new location.
I gotta say, this flying home to a new location than I left from is a bit jarring to the senses. When I left, we were parked in humid and rainy Oregon. When I came back, we’re in arid and dry desert climates with completely new surroundings. Kinda cool, actually.
Washoe Lake State Park – Carson City, NV
Our caravan had made it in earlier that day and snagged sites at the nearly empty Washoe Lake State Park just north of Carson City. It’s a favorite of Nina & Paul’s, somewhere they have returned to nearly every year since they hit the road. And a new experience for us.
When we pulled in, it was nearly 11pm, and the smell of the sage danced around my noise in the night air – such a delightful scent to welcome me home to my little roaming tribe.
We touched base with our buddies in the morning, and after me being away for several days and the caravan having just completed a 500 mile repositioning – we were all feeling the desire to stay still for a few days and catch up. We all extended our stay until Sunday morning, which would allow ample time for hiking, errand running and meeting up with friends in the area.
Morning also brought the realization of just why this spot ranks highly for our friends – it’s stunningly gorgeous. All of the sites are well spaced, offering good bits of privacy and view. Chris had snagged us a site with a gorgeous panoramic view of the mountains, and access to the trail down to the ‘lake’.
The sites are $17 a night, and are all dry camping – no hook-ups. Perfect for putting our new solar installation to a full test. There is a dump station onsite, and water spigots throughout the campground.
Washoe Lake is nearly all dried up due to low snow fall last winter. Locals we encountered told us that they’ve not seen it this dry since the 1990s. There’s something about a dried up lake bed however that just speaks to our souls, maybe it’s that Burning Man thing? We made several trips out to the ‘lake’ to walk on the puzzle pieced bed.
Big City Tech & Shopping Errands
While in the area, we also attended to several errands while we had access to two big cities.
First up was picking up an iPhone 6. There’s been a ‘glitch’ in the Apple ordering process that allows those with Verizon unlimited data plans (which we had JUST acquired) to order a subsidized iPhone 6 by spawning a brand new unlimited data line with 2 year contract.
Chris was jonesing for an iPhone 6, so ordered one to be picked up at the Reno Apple store – and we found a new home to transfer the Verizon unlimited data line responsibility to amongst our Mobile Internet Aficionados. Which means we now have an iPhone 6 that we paid $299 for (subsidized price) now with no contract attached to it, that we activated on our AT&T Mobile Share plan – pretty sweet!
Paul caught the Apple-bug lately too, and the WheelingIt crew decided they wanted in on the deal as well. So we spawned them an unlimited data line with an iPhone 6 to replace the ‘double data’ Verizon plan they had just established.
And thank goodness we got it all completed quickly, as it turns out Verizon is discontinuing allowing transferring the UDPs to new owners effective TODAY. (If mobile internet developments like this are important to you – make sure you add our RV Mobile Internet Newsfeed to your RSS, or join our free mobile internet newsletter. And of course our Mobile Internet Aficionado members have been getting alerts and assistance in navigating this ever changing landscape.)
While in the area, we also joined Nina for a shopping excursion to Costco, and did a re-stocking run at Trader Joe’s in Carson City. We should be well stocked with good eats for our journey down Highway 395.
Abundance of Friends!
On our last night in town, we hooked up with our friends Clarke & Elaine in Reno for yummy Mexican food and margaritas. We had last seen them at Cape Blanco Lighthouse where the six of us co-hosted in September. Now they’re workamping at Amazon in Fernley, NV for the season (and Clarke is blogging daily about the experience if you’re curious about what that gig is like).
When we checked in on RVillage at Washoe Lake, it also turned out that our new friends Mark & Patsi, who we had just meet up with in Eugene, were also camped nearby!
Life on the road has become a full on non-stop community, for sure! We just love it.
Washoe Lake was a delightful and much needed catch-up stay in the area… but by Sunday morning the campground was filling up, and the four of us were ready to roll on south to new adventures. More to come!