Sixty Six, for Sixty-Six, Part XLII: More Flow than Ebb

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July 2, 2017, Sparks- 

The drive through northwestern Arizona and western Nevada, yesterday, was quite pleasant, thanks to a well-maintained vehicle and the unusual amount of energy I felt.  This last was despite having had to tend, however briefly, with a neighbourhood emergency, in the wee small hours of the morning. Long story short, when it comes to the welfare of children, or vulnerable adults, I am not going to just look at the clock and roll over, back to sleep.  Police were called, matter was resolved, and I did get back to dreamland.

One of my concerns, along the way, was the water levels of the major lakes, en route.  I stopped, briefly, for a look at Lake Mead, before doing the customary straight shot through Las Vegas.  The reservoir, which has suffered, mightily, in the drought of the past several years, has made a modest recovery, this Spring.

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The shimmering haze reflected the heat, 112 in mid-afternoon.  Needless to say, this is why I don’t tarry in LV, in July.   A brief stop at Snow Mountain, north of the valley, for a turkey wrap, was sufficient.

Another of my interests, in western Nevada and across the Mountain West, is the architecture of various mining towns.  This runs the gamut from Victorian elegance to honky-tonk kitsch.  It’s all good.  I stopped in the eclectic little town of Goldfield, between Beatty and Tonopah,  On the west side of town, there are a few examples of the latter.

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There is also plenty of faded elegance, begging for restoration. In the background, stands the vacant Goldfield Hotel.

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This is not exactly the Arc du Triomphe, but it serves as a reminder of the frontier spirit.

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My mining town fix having been satiated, I headed on, to Tonopah, stopping at one of that fine town’s newest offerings:  Beans and Brews Coffee Shop, for a much-needed boost.  Tonopah, also, has much to offer, in the way of late 19th Century memorabilia, as I’ve documented on prior trips.  I had four more hours of travel, though, so my cup of Joe was to go.

Hawthorne, just above Walker Lake, has seen my smiling face a few times.  This town, you may remember, is where my Nissan began to falter, two years ago, and my angels took over, to get it to Reno. The guys at Pizza Factory,  prepared a delicious baked spaghetti with meat sauce, which I took to an overlook, four miles north of town. Walker Lake also looks in much better shape.

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My Reno/Carson family were glad for my arrival, at 10:15 PM, and we caught up on life, for about an hour.  Today was more of the same, in the modest family home, here in Reno’s neighbour.  The kids made slime, the adults watched family-friendly movies and the menagerie kept guard.

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The Road to 65, Mile 176: Northwestward, Day 2

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May 23, 2015, Reno- I ended up here, exactly where I wanted to be this evening.  It was the way I ended up here that is one for the books.

The morning dawned, grey, cold and gloomy in Tonopah.  I had a light breakfast, then headed up the street a bit, to downtown, to take in the Jim Butler Days Parade.  This is Tonopah’s Founder’s Day event, so all the area converged on Hwy. 95, and thereabouts.

Tonopah, NV on a grey Saturday morning (May 23, 2015).

There is an urgency, with respect to the protection of children here, as in many communities.  These pinwheels serve as a reminder that this is everyone’s responsibility.

At 10 A.M. sharp, the parade started.

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As is always the case, local service organizations provided clown cars and other motor vehicles.

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A hobby horse took center stage, atop a local car dealer’s entry.

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Young ladies performed a belly dance,with dignity and grace.

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I passed by the venerable Mizpah Hotel, centerpiece of downtown.

My attention was then drawn to Tonopah Mining Park.  Similar to Arizona’s Jerome State Park, the expansive spot celebrates Nevada’s rich history in extracting gems and minerals.  No serious study of mining can ignore the Silver State.

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The entrance to Tonopah Mining Park.

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Ore wagons and drilling bores are on display, with visitors asked to keep a respectful distance.

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This is an example of where miners lived, here in Tonopah.

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Here is what is called a Grizzly, where the ore and mineral were separated.

In the Park’s museum, I paid attention to the many examples of gems and minerals offered by the soil and rock of Nevada.

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Note, in particular, the azurite (bright blue stone).

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Malachite is also important here, as it is in Arizona.

Finally, I caught the view of downtown Tonopah, from the hillside.

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I walked back to my Nissan, and had little trouble heading northward, until I got to the small city of Hawthorne, just shy of Walker Lake.  There, the same issue which landed the old warhorse in a shop in Prescott, recurred.  I waited ninety minutes here, enjoying a tasty calzone, from Pizza Factory, and writing in my journal.  I received a message in my head, saying “We’re going to get you to Reno.”  Trusting this, I started the car up again, and voila!  On we went, along the shore of scenic Walker Lake, past the towns of Yerington, Silver Spring and Fernley, and a tripped railroad gate, which was not an issue for me, as I kept the car in park, then was able to go around, with help from a sheriff’s deputy, who was engaged in traffic control at the errant gate.  (There was no train.)

I got to Sparks, and called my friend from  Sierra Sid’s Casino parking lot.  Then, it happened again, no power when shifting into gear.  Considering the four stop lights and two left turns that lay between Sid’s and my friend’s house, I got a tow.  No one else was inconvenienced and the mechanic saw what my problem was.  I have a safe place to stay, the car is parked securely here, and on Tuesday, I will get the vehicle to a transmission shop. We will get to the  bottom of the issue, this coming week, and then the journey will go on.  In the meantime, I will get to see more of Reno and the surrounding area.