Wednesday, February 28, 2007

This Is Vegas


These two pics sum up Vegas. Sandra's posing with "The King" (who poses for tips, I don't mind the hustle, after all it is Vegas) and I'm posing with a showgirl. I even got a free picture that I'm going to put up at work. I think they're selling timeshares and that's what the promo is about.
The Strip bored me this trip. I don't know why. Usually I like going to the Strip and looking around the shops and people watching. But not this time.
We did walk across the freeway from the Oasis to the Silverton. Bass Pro Shops is attached to the casino. (Here's the link)
I don't hunt or fish, but they had more cammo clothing than any place I've ever seen. I spent at least an hour wandering around while Sandra paid her Nevada Tax. I managed to not spend a penny, but it was difficult.
Come Monday morning, we got up early, ate at Black Bear and made the 10 hour drive home. It was another great trip in the RV, I certainly don't regret buying it.

Pete Rose Is A Piece Of Shit


Pete Rose was signing stuff for money at this store at The Forum Shops. Rose is a lying piece of shit who broke the cardnial rule of baseball. He should never, ever be reinstated. He is a pariah.
Mark wrote a letter to the paper in 2002 that sums it up. Here it is.
.
>>I was astonished to see so many people speak or write in favor of ending Pete Rose's permanent ban from baseball. I couldn't disagree more. Allowing Rose back into the game would set the worst precedent possible. The rule against gambling exists for the purpose of maintaining the game's integrity.It gains all of its strength from its unequivocal language and its indiscriminatory nature. Seeing that players of even the greatest stature(Hal Chase, Joe Jackson and Pete Rose) can be banned from the game for jeopardizing its integrity sends a very clear message to all involved -- nomatter who you are, if you break this rule, you are forever banned from this game. Reinstating Rose would send just the opposite message -- even the most important rules are bendable if you are prominent enough and make enough noise.I am equally astonished to hear so many people say that Rose has "paid his debt." How? What has Pete Rose done to merit reinstatement? Has he admittedhe bet on baseball? No. Has he quit gambling in general? No. Has he stopped associating with cocaine dealers and other felons? No. Well, what has he done? He's done a lot of bitching, whining, grandstanding outside the Hallof Fame, and prostituting himself on the Home Shopping Network. Is that all it takes to pay his debt?Rose's permanent ban should remain in effect. There is no doubt about it.Before any of your scribes tackle the subject of Pete Rose again, they should do their homework. They can start here:
The Dowd Report
Evaluating the Dowd Report
Baseball's Inconsistent Stance on Rose
The Key's Already on Your Ring

Vegas


This is what $45 a night gets you at the Oasis RV Resort. The link is here. You stay here for the resort. Sadly, there's no picnic table at the cheaper sites, which I think is pretty sad. You do get full hookups, including cable tv. There's a trolley to the Strip and a free shuttle to the South Point casino. We've stayed here every year we've had the RV and will probably come back this way on the summer trip. We stayed here three nights. This is a nice place. Take a look at the link, you'll see.

Tecopa Hot Springs


Sandra and I are not adverse to taking a mineral bath. I saw mention of Tecopa Hot Springs on the Internet and we made a slight detour on our way to Vegas. The link to where we took our spa is here.
Inyo County has a county run park with camping and access to the hot spring somewhere out of town. I looked at their website and couldn't find it. Hell, there's nothing wrong with Tecopa Hot Springs Campground and Pools. They only charge $17 a night for partial hookups and you get access to the pools as part of your payment. It was $10 for Sandra and I so you can look at it as camping was only $7. The monthly fee with electric is $205 and you can go to the baths every day! Damn, this is for me!

Lake Manly


Its kind of hard to see in the pic, but on the hill are terraces cut by wave action from Lake Manly. That's the name of the lake when it was a lake and not dry. And there's concern about global warming now, what caused this lake that was hundreds of feet deep and tens of miles long to evaporate long before man knew what fire was? Hmmmm, can global warming and cooling be part of the natural processes of Earth? Nah, I didn't think so either.

Badwater





This is the lowest spot in the Western Hemisphere. The pool of water seeps out of the ground. Its not poisonous, but animals won't drink it. This is right off the highway.

Having Afternoon Tea








One can still expierence the fancy resort without staying there. Sandra got the idea to take afternoon tea on the patio. So, we did. We got two tea servings and one platter of tea cakes to split. With tip it was $25. Ooooh, fancy.


A Nice Place



Here's the spring fed pool and pathways through the greenery. The link is here to the webpage. This place truly is an oasis in the desert. Too rich for my blood. $439 buys a lot of camping.

Furnace Creek Inn

Here's the fancy resort. Sandra talked me into going inside. I overheard the front desk taking a reservation at $439 a night. And, that's no typo.

Furnace Creek Ranch

This was built in 1931 and has been added to. This is where the post office is, as well as the motel, golf course, laundry, and housing for the employees. I was able to get the LA Times and USA Today at the gift store. A 20 oz Diet Pepsi was $1.99. The closest real grocery is in Pahrump, about a 2 hour drive each way.

Riding


While at Furnace Creek Ranch, the hub of the valley, we say these riders getting ready to head out into one of the fiercest windstorms I've seen. I thought it was almost unsafe to ride, but when you have to get somewhere, there's not much choice.
Back in my Gold Wing days I was coming from Lovelock to Sparks in May. There was a stormfront moving in over the Sierra's and the wind was as bad as I've ever ridden in. It was one of the few times I was nervous riding. As I got into Sparks there was snow falling. The ride home the next day over the mountains was sunny and specatular with the fresh snow on the ground.

Harmony Borax Works





This is the ruins of the Harmony Borax Works. Before the valley was made into a National Monument, there was borax mining that was a big deal. This was the home of the "20 Mule Team." The wagons are king sized, that's for sure.

Salt Creek


Salt Creek is an all year creek that Pupfish live in. We came a bit too early to see the fish. The trailhead is a couple of miles off the paved road. Yep, I took the RV on it. Slowly.

Dante's View







Dante's View is at an elevation of 5200 feet, which makes it about 5400 feet to the valley floor. The map says no vehicles over 25 feet but I bulldogged the RV to the top. The bottom pic is the road down the back side of the ridge.
The other three pics are the view into Death Valley. In the winter the road gets closed due to snow and ice. When you look to the east, into Nevada, you can see a long way. This is worth the stop.



Furnace Creek


Here's two pics of our campsite at the NPS campground at Furnace Creek. For $18 a night you get a picnic table, fire ring, and a spacious place to park. There are flush toilets close by, and a place to dump your tanks and fill up your fresh water. And, you can reserve a spot over the Internet, which is the only way to go. And, there was some vegetation around the campground as well.
For $12 a night, you can park across the highway and not get a fire ring and picnic table. And, you're in an open dirt lot. Sandra and I had a fire every night and ate outside, so it was worth it to us.

Amargosa Opera House


The top pic is of the Amargosa Opera House. The link is here. Its a pretty famous place, though it was closed on the day we stopped by. The lower pic is the rest of the thriving metropolis of Death Valley Junction, which is at the intersection of SH-127 and SH-190 in California.

This Is Not Real


Yeah, I know. It looks like a cop car. But, the Nye County Sheriff's don't use black and whites. Neither does the NHP. The car has private plates. The star on the door is just a star with no department name. It does say, "For Offical Use Only." Yeah, rrrright.
Charlie and I saw a scam car like this one day on one of our numerous rides. We were getting gas outside of Firebaugh on I-5 and we saw a car that looked like a cop car but wasn't. The owner of the car told us he rented the car to local departments when they needed another car. I didn't realize I had "stupid" tattooed on my forehead.

Sandra's Stop



Because I'm such a good husband, I managed to find Sandra a casino so she can pull a couple of slot machine handles. It looks like Sandra cleaned house, but she lost a couple of bucks. Note the Gold Wing in the background of the lower picture. The rider was staying in Furnace Creek and he was living in his toyhauler and was able to bring his Wing with him.
When I mentioned Sandra's interest in learning to ride, the first words out of his mouth were "Honda Rebel." Didn't I just blog about that very thing?

Museum





I forgot to note the name of this collection of "art". This is just outside Rhyolite. Sandra wanted to stop and take a look. I guess I'm not an artist.

Sandra And I


This is a good pic of Sandra, I look like I'm passing a brick.

Rail Station



Here's the front and back of the rail station in Rhyolite. The building is privately owned and has been fenced off for quite a while.

Assorted Ruins












The top couple of pics are of the general store, the middle pic is the school and the next one is the bank building. They're all on the paved main drag, so to speak.



Bottle House







Here's a couple of pics of the famous Bottle House. The BLM has restored the house within the last couple of years. A BLM volunteer took our picture and talked a bit about the house.



The Road To Rhyolite

The ghost town of Rhyolite is a couple of miles west of Beatty. The ruins are about a hundred years old.