Tour04 Day 12 - Silver Lake, CA to Carson City, NV

An Island in Silver Lake near the Kit Carson Resort

I rode just four and a half hours today to cover the same distance that took me eight hours yesterday. I stopped in Carson City rather than heading east since Fallon, which is some 65 miles east, is the nearest place where I could be certain of finding a room. I didn't feel like attempting another long day today. My body is working well, although its still needs to lose a bit of weight, but there is no sense in abusing it with back to back hard days.

Back to 8000 feet after climbing from 7200 feet

Last night at the Kit Carson was very pleasant and I got a, well deserved, good nights sleep. This morning, when I had breakfast with the Kit Carson employees, I thought they looked very central European. One, the only one I asked, turned out to be fresh from Romania. He is a student at University in Bucharest, but come from a small town near Arad. I bicycled near his home last summer. When the owner of the resort joined us for breakfast, I discovered that he gets all of his summer help from Europe. He says they are brighter and better educated than help he can get from the US. All the workers I met this morning were new to the US, and were there early to be trained. In two weeks some regulars - he mentioned one woman from Poland who was coming back for her fourth summer working at the resort - would be arriving. A great deal, both for the resort and for the students. I must write my young friend in Poland and suggest that, when she is at University next year, she should apply for this program.

After breakfast, I finished yesterday's web page / ride report, packed up, and headed towards Carson pass. The first things I saw after leaving Kit Carson, were two camping places just beyond the lake. There was a third place at the other end of the lake which I saw, but did not check out, yesterday.

Distances from Kit Carson

I knew I had to ride over Carson Spur before riding over Carson Pass, but I didn't realize that riding up Carson Spur would be longer, and harder than riding over Carson Pass. Carson Pass is 600 feet higher, but the actual climb was easier. Part of that may have been the fact that the sun was shining and I had one of those @#$%#$! gentle tailwinds riding up the first big hill. Sweat was pouring off my forehead on that climb. a little while later, climbing Carson pass, it was cloudy, I had a headwind, and I was chilly.

The two ends of Caples Lake which is between the two passes

Riding down from the first pass at 35 mph, I got passed close by my first, and last, jerk horn blower of the day. That was annoying, but the scenery between the passes took my mind off jerks and focused it on the incredible beauty of a mountain lake. Caples Lake is stunningly beautiful.

Carson Pass

Things were pretty much downhill after Carson Pass. About 4000 feet of downhill, much of it at 35 to 40 mph. After an initial descent of more than 1500 feet, the road levels out in Hope Valley and stays relatively level for maybe five miles. Then the descent resumes again and continues all the way to Carson Valley.

A beautiful Lake above Hope Valley

Riding in Hope Valley

Heading down after Hope Valley

When I was in Jackson, the woman who ran the motel suggested I should try to reach Sorenson's Resort that day. That was too much for me, but I did stop there for lunch today. Sorenson's and the Kit Carson are on the maps I scanned from my road atlas and put on my PDA! They have been there such a long time that they are treated like landmarks. Sorensen's is located just after the road to Tahoe goes off from CA88 at the end of Hope Valley. The restaurant is small and good, because it felt right, I had wine with lunch. Nice!

Riding in Nevada for the first time.

NV 88 ends at US 395 which is rideable, but boring, to US 50 in Carson City

When I got to Carson City, I stopped at a sports gear and sunglasses place to buy some glasses that will do a better job of keeping wind, and dust, out of my eyes. Then I stopped at a Subway to eat and, at about 4:30, checked into a Mom and Pop motel. There is a cheaper motel 6 just down the road, but this room is bigger, quieter, and more comfortable. Later I walked down to a restaurant between the Super 8 and Motel 6 and had a salad for my second supper. It was a strange experience because all the other customers were speaking French! Well, the kind of French that they speak in Quebec <grin>. Leaving the restaurant, I saw a bunch of motorcycles with Quebec plates at the Super 8 next door.This morning, at that same restaurant, I watched twenty Goldwing motorcycles, most with two people on them and towing trailers, heading north.

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