Pt 67 – Pine Cones, BM Mountain & SLC

Friday, July 12th – Sunday, July 14th, 2013

We were back in Truckee, so the “Spanish alarm clock” and the train passing by in the morning woke me up bright and early. I missed this place. We decided to sleep in, so we didn’t move the van until later in the day. We headed back to “Coffeebar” before tossing the Frisbee back and forth at the park. California has some massive pine cones that dwarf the ones out east in comparison.


As much as we hated it, we decided to leave Truckee and keep moving so we could see something new. But not without one last stroll around town and a trip back to “Coffeebar” for coffee, food, and fun times!

We took I-80 East stopping at Reno, NV to get the oil changed at Jiffy Lube. They told us our van was too big to fit in their shop and directed us down the street to a different location. After looking at their shop, we suspect they were just being lazy. Perhaps they direct most of their clientele down the street, because that Jiffy Lube was a mad house! It was super busy and chaotic when we went to grab gas too. Maybe it’s just Reno. Too many humans.

We had a long drive through the middle of nowhere in the desert of Nevada before stopping at a Walmart in Winnemucca.

We did our normal Walmart routine, stocking up and filling our water jugs, before getting back on I-80 East. I got a chuckle as we passed by Battle Mountain, NV since the mountain next to town had a giant “BM” written on it.

Behold! Off in the Distance…

We dodged the jewelry selling Native Americans hiding around the corner as we stopped at the rest stop in Beowawe, then we stopped again in West Wendover, NV to stretch our legs, fill the tank, and eat lunch.

We were happy once we crossed the border into Utah and re-entered the Mountain Time Zone. We were making progress. The Salt Lake Desert was very pretty; white sands for miles and miles with mountains in the distance. There was a mirage of water from all the heat stretching across it.

We arrived in Salt Lake City, UT, stopping at the Patagonia outlet first (Trevor’s obsession), where we received some suggestions of places to check out from one of the employees.


From there, we made our first stop at “Coffee Garden,” then walked to “Liberty Heights Fresh,” a local farmer’s market-style grocer that we passed by on the way in. They had a lot of unique products there. I left with a golden kiwi and two bags of gourmet popcorn, and Trevor bought hot sauce.

We headed to Walmart for the evening. We would explore Salt Lake City some more in the morning. It’s strangely bright out at 8:30 pm, and sleeping was a struggle with the strong winds violently rocking the van throughout the night.

The next morning, we went back to “Coffee Garden” before driving downtown and parking near the Capitol Building. We strolled around Temple Square and I admired the architecture of the Mormon Temple. It was huge!


After walking up an appetite, we went to “Blue Plate Diner,” another recommendation by the Patagonia lady, and got a huge breakfast. I must say, Utah is one of few states that is amazing from top to bottom, but it was time to press on.

We took I-80 East across the state line and checked in at Quality Inn in Evanston, WY. The room wasn’t ready yet, but the lady at the front desk gave us a few suggestions of places in town to kill some time. Unfortunately, options were limited since she said they had the “sidewalks rolled up for Sunday.”

We headed downtown to see what we could get into and ended up getting ice cream at “The Scoop Ice Cream Parlor.” I got a massive banana split and Trevor got a chocolate malt.

To be perfectly honest, I don’t even care for ice cream when I’m at home, but I’ve consumed some serious dairy on this trip so far! It must be to balance out all that coffee consumption. We made it a point to stay sober during this road trip for budget purposes, and I’ve used coffee as a filler for alcohol. We did end up saving some serious dough by not drinking. We probably would have been back home by the time we hit New Orleans otherwise!

I digress.

“Did you order the trough of ice cream?” “Yes. Yes I did.”

After getting super fat, we lounged around the hotel room. The Trayvon Martin case is all over the news since George Zimmerman was found not guilty yesterday. I hate to admit that it’s kinda nice to be so heavily distracted from all the tension from the media, and the ugliness in the world. It’s enough to put yourself in an early grave.

Jump Back to Part 66: Lobster Rolls & Cruising Across the Golden Gate

Jump Ahead to Pt 68 – Devilish Rock Formations, Prairie Dogs & Deadwood


Start Over at Part 01: The Blue Bubble, Freebies & A Rude Awakening

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