Home and Beyond

P.S. I wrote this on January 17th

In my last post I said Eric and I would be heading back out on the road on Wednesday, Jan 9. Well, that didn’t happen. When there was an announcement that Joshua Tree was to be closed, it threw a wrench in our plans.

We didn’t end up leaving until Friday, Jan 11. Which is fine, we got to use an oven and get pedicures and run a few more last minute errands. Friday, we went straight to 29 Palms to see one of Eric’s old buddies from when he first joined the Marines and drove trucks. We spent a few days with them hanging out, catching up, and playing with their rambunctious and sassy kids.

Sunday we made our way up to Big Bear. On our way out of the J-Tree area we learned the Park was never fully closed. This government shut down is really starting to mess with our plans. Sunday night we found a Marine Corps Community Services camp site to stay at. It was like any other R.V./camp site, except all reservations had to be made on the phone (not at the actual main check in), there was no running water hook ups, and the shower houses were pretty much the same as your basic training military facilities, oh and they don’t allow dogs on the premises at all. But at least they had power so we could hook the van up and bring out the instant pot.

We skied half of Monday. Big Bear for us at this point is a bit boring. They’re a tiny ski area that’s overcrowded, with no fresh powder, and basic runs. Plus the weather was miserable since it was raining and cloudy. On to the next place, New Jack City.

Unfortunately, the rain followed us to the climbing Mecca of New Jack. We spent the next day avoiding the rain, and taking the dogs for walks when it wasn’t raining. Since the rain made it was a ghost town, we got to scope out the area for the best climbs. The next day, yesterday Jan 16, the clouds finally let up and we got a chance to climb. Despite the wet weather, the rock at New Jack is a mixture of granite and volcanic, it was no problem to climb. Unlike many places in California that are mainly sandstone, and should never be climbed when recently wet. Eric got to climb his first tower and I managed to lead several routes.

For those unfamiliar with climbing there’s different kinds of climbing. Top Rope, which is the same as what you will find at most climbing gyms. A rope is already going through anchors at the top of a climb so you’re always protected by rope from the start to end of a climb. Then there’s Lead Climbing, where you clip carabiners into pre set bolts in the wall as you go up, and protect yourself by putting the rope through the carabiners as you go up. So if you fall while leading and you’re above your last clip but below your next clip you might take a couple feet fall. This is the type of climbing Eric and I mostly do. Then there’s Traditional climbing, or Trad, where instead of having pre set bolts along your route to clip into you are the one placing protection in the wall. By way of sticking a cam, or nut, or hex in cracks in the wall. Anyways that’s all I’m explaining for now, if you get really curious it’s probably best to start googling and get into your own rabbit hole.

After a successful day of climbing at New Jack we stayed one last night at our free camp site. That brings us to today. We planned to make it to Bishop for the weekend but once again the weather had other plans for us. Sustained wind gusts along the 395 up to Bishop forced Caltrans to prohibit travel for campers, RVs, Vans, and commercial trucks for however long the wind keeps up.

Currently we are at a Shell gas station in Inyokern with a ton of other trucks and RVs and vans, that have been forced off the road. We’re pretty bored, but since we have service for once I’m finally posting.

Adventure Talley
Resort skiing: 13
Backcountry: 2
Climbing: 5
Hiking: 8
Biking: 1

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