We decided to return home via the northerly route through Quebec and Ontario. Sure, gas prices are higher, but Canadian money is so much prettier, AND they have Tim Hortons. Being a coffee junkie, I just love Tims. :) We dropped back down into the US at Sault Ste. Marie and drove across Michigan's Upper Penninsula, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and South Dakota. Most nights we camped in the Honda...
...But one night we stayed in a "covered wagon," enclosed in quotation marks because it had a hard top and electricity. ;-) There was just something not quite right about blow drying my hair in a covered wagon. This was at the Laura Ingalls Wilder Homestead in De Smet, South Dakota, and was way cool! Wilder authored the "Little House" series, and I was a hard-core LIW geek in 5th and 6th grade. It was really neat to be in De Smet, site of the "Little Town on the Prairie" and some of the other later books.
A fierce little storm blew through but didn't produce much rain.After a couple of days visiting Chris's pop in Rifle and a couple of days running the North Fruita Trails (including Zippity Do Dah and Chutes 'n Ladders) in Colorado, we blitzed across Utah and spent the night in Great Basin National Park.
I don't get up before my coffee...
We climbed Wheeler Peak which was super awesome. It's over 13,000 feet and the 2nd highest in Nevada!
We made it! I always have to check the summit register for people I know. Didn't see any familiar names this time but usually do. Not surprising since Great Basin is pretty out there.
We spent the night at Valley of Fire State Park and the next day climbed Mt. Charleston, north of Vegas. It now ranks as one of my favorite mountains. We did the 18-mile loop. Had we known how runnable the trail was--and had we been better acclimatized--we would have been running instead of hiking! Bristlecone pines, the oldest living things on Earth, were all over the place. The photo below was taken just off the summit.
Finally made it home just before Labor Day weekend -- 2 months, 10,000 miles & lots of great memories.