We woke up as the sun rose and finally felt comfortable enough stealth camping to sleep in a bit. We weren’t visible for cars in either direction and we were nice and toasty in the tent. But, we couldn’t let ourselves sleep for too long, a town was calling to us. We packed up climbed back out of our hiding place and unburried our strollers from the bushes. Today was supposed to be a short one that would maybe end in a motel.
We made it to the peak of Robinson (9 peaks from Austin done!) pretty quickly and started the slow descent to the city. The climb down felt like it lasted forever, slowly creeping down the mountain, with clouds looming around us.
We rounded a corner only to see a few cars parked on the side of the road in front of us. As we got closer we discussed crossing the street to get around them, but soon realized they were pulled pretty far off the road, so we would be safe on our shoulder.
While we passed the cars we realized it was the same pipeline construction workers from yesterday! So, of course we smiled and waved as they dug something up. After we passed, the cloud finally got its way and started raining on us. But, the rain in Nevada is fickle and it stopped quickly. At least long enough for Rebecca to take advantage of one of those common moments on Route 50 where there are no cars for a long time, so she peed right on the side of the road. She chose a good time though, because soon after her break, the pipeline construction workers drove by, moving their tractor to a new digging location. We waved and smiled, only for the rain to start again! This guy is obviously bad luck for us!
Everyone in Nevada seems to love their guns, and shooting signs. We were feeling lucky we weren’t camping out in the open when we saw some of the road signs close to Ely.
So we made it around a corner and found a nice little pull out to eat the last of our food. We hadn’t quite packed enough for three days and we were starting to notice how hungry we were. We’ve calculated that we’re burning between 5,000 and 6,000 calories on an average day (FitBit did the estimates of course) so we need lots of food. But we knew we were close to town and we groaned as we stood up to make the last few miles into town where we knew we had stores, restaurants, and must importantly a package coming from Ken! Ken is a guy who lives in Carson City who decided he liked our plan to walk across the country so much he’d send us a package full of food. When you’re hungry, a package full of food items is pretty much the only thing you can talk about all day.
We rounded a corner after eating to see a cool railroad track that went through the mountain. Of course, the rain was threatening again and we’d put the camera in a waterproof bag….So we have no pictures. But just past the railroad pass, was the city of Ely. After seeing towns with no more than 800 people for two weeks, a town with 3500+ seems like a metropolis. We had heard that the famous Hotel Nevada had cheap rooms, so we checked there first, but the $35 rooms were all booked. We’d hoped to snag the Stephen King room for a good price, but instead we headed across the street to their sister motel, the Four Sevens. They have candy at the welcome desk, so it was worth it.
We checked in and decided we could run to the post office to mail off some of the stuff we wouldn’t need after Nevada. Luckily, Ken mailed our package to the Fire Station, so we didn’t have to stress about missing that. We emptied Tim’s bag, put on our rain jackets, and started the 2 mile walk to the post office, firehouse, and grocery store. On the way we stopped at the Chamber of Commerce to get our passports stamped, and the guy gave us Fernly and Baker even though we were missing those towns (maybe next time).
As we stepped out of the Chamber of Commerce it started really raining. We’d debated wearing our rain pants and have vowed to always wear them if we question it at all from now on. The last mile to the post office was cold, wet, windy rain. But we made it ten minutes before they close, so it ended up being a success. Then we ran across the road to grab some quick food at the gas station and stopped by the fire house with not totally empty bellies.
Thanks to Ken our spirits were up (the donuts and milk we picked up at the grocery store helped too) and the two mile walk back to our motel was a quick one. If you’re ever in Ely, don’t stop at the first motel, there are so many, so call around to see who will give you the best deal.
We showered, ate again, and enjoyed discussing the different items in our package. Sometimes it’s great to end a day indoors and clean. Route 50 has been good to us, but we knew we’d be turning off of it in the morning.
Today we walked through:
Rebecca’s steps: 60,664
Tim’s steps: 57,232
629 miles finished