I’m Afraid of the Ocean, So Why not Go Kayaking On It?

We woke up early in the morning as we had a big day ahead of ourselves and wanted to get a head start. So after making a Rolling Stone  for breakfast (because what else would a geology lover eat?) We headed out in the light of the dawn to drive to Spooners Cove in Montana de Oro State Park. The drive down was excellent. The highway was wide open and the way the light was hitting the rolling hills of the area, it was magical. I purposely played “Circle of Life” as we drove. Seriously if you have never listened to that song while driving in the morning, you need to. It wakes everyone up in the best of ways. IMG_20160426_112051

As we drove through the eucalyptus forest entering Mantana de Oro, it seemed like we were going through a new and far away land. Even though we were merely nearing the cost. Soon the forest broke and we drove pass Spooners Cove (one of my favorite beaches). We parked up ontop of a small hill and near the trail head for Bluff Trail. This is the trail that we will take in order to get down to the tide pools.

Bluff Trail, is kind of a unique trail. There really are no trees or shade on this trail, and wraps along the steep cliff faces of the California Cost. Small shrubs are abundant off the trail and the wildflowers are in bloom. There are certain areas where you can get close to the edge and see the beach and crashing waves below, but be warned. These cliffs are prone to weathering and can give away without any warning. So please be careful when you are enjoying the views20160423_080133

Before I knew it, we were heading down a long woodenIMG_20160427_183651 staircase and to the beach below. Sand greeted us at first but it soon gave away to the exposed layers of shale, and shallow pools of water where sea anemones bloomed. I walked cautiously over the floor, trying my best to not step on any barnacles, crabs or snails. Exploring every pool of water I could. One could say they were all the same, but only a fool would utter such an understatement. Each pool was unique, each pool brought something different and offered a new perspective to life under the sea.


After spending the whole morning exploring tide pools and sandy cliffs it was time to head back up to Morro Bay, to kayak in the presence of Morro Rock, and all of her glory. Upon entering the kayak rental shop, my nervousness was subdue thanks to friendly and warm staff. After a short crash course on kayaking I was getting into my kayak and off into the open water of the bay. I must admit, I’m terrified of the ocean. I don’t like how I can’t see what is going on around me, and knowing that there are things that can kill me living in the water. I freak out whenever I feel something touch me while in the ocean, and that is why, for the most part I avoid it at all costs. However, I’m also open to new adventures and experiences and I really wanted to see the Morro Bay sand dunes, and there is only one way to get to them. So off I go into the kayak, and onto the water.

I paddle around for a bit just trying to get use to it, and getting my form down. I paddle up to a floating dock that is littered with sea lions. As the wind picked up I was quickly reminded of how bad they smell, my god, how could I forget that? I quickly paddled to the other side and everything was much better. Morro Rock stood majestically in the near distance, and I knew I would have to risk it and take a picture. I fought against the wind and current in order to get a few pictures of it from the kayak, hoping the whole time that my phone wouldn’t fall into the ocean. After getting a few shots I decided that it was time to check out the dunes. IMG_20160424_143340

I pulled my kayak up to the dunes, because I was overly cautious that the tide was going to come in and pull it out into the bay, and that was the last thing I wanted. Once at the dunes I went for a walk with a friend through the allowed passage to the other side. During this time of year, a lot of the area is roped off in order to let the native birds nest without humans tromping through the area. We walked and talked making the most of it. Even though walking through the loose hot sand was difficult it was fun, a bit long, but fun none the less. After some time walking through the sand we were rewarded to the sight of crashing waves on the beach.

After resting among the rocks and laying in the sand I decided I wanted to head back to my kayak and paddle around the bay more. I still had a couple of hours left on my rental and I couldn’t think of a better way to spend my time. As I paddled out into the bay it wasn’t bad. It was quite easy actually. I just had to paddle more on my right than left in order to keep straight. It was nice and peaceful out on the water. After I went as far as I could one way I turned around and went in the other direction. As I got near the docked boats the wind started to pick up and it made navigating among them difficult.  All was good once I passed all the boats and I soon found myself near some sea marshes that had white cranes looking for food in the reeds. 20160423_161256

I sat there in my kayak for a while just enjoying the moment, letting the current take me a bit. Everything felt great out there, I almost didn’t want to come back to shore. The sea had taken a hold of me, but my time was almost up and I knew I had to get back. So I began heading towards the docks. This is when things got tough. The wind had picked up tremendously and so now I had to contend with waves as I traveled up the channel. I was able to deal with the situation, just had to paddle a little harder and work to keep my balance but as I paddled I was encouraged by a man on a sail boat. “You go dude” he shouted as I paddled by.

In no time I had arrived back at the rental safe and sound and without falling overboard. I was a bit soaked from all the waves, but still I couldn’t complain. I had accomplished what I have set to accomplished. I felt like I was able to come to grips with one of my biggest fears and have a good time while doing, and I as I drove back to camp. I couldn’t help but feel happy with that. I now look forward to doing this again in the near future.



Purple Rain, on the way to Morro Bay

I’ve been driving through the Los Angeles traffic for nearly two hours when the congestion finally seems to break. I’m only in Ventura and I still have a ways to go. Morro Bay is my destination on this trip, and even though I can feel my morning caffeine begin to wear off, I can’t help but feel excited. I’ve been impatiently awaiting another outing since my last overnight trip to the Trona Pinnacles and I must say it’s been too long since I’ve slept in a tent again. I don’t know what makes camping so special but it truly is. Maybe it’s being detached from civilization? Or maybe it’s just a connection with mother nature that puts one’s mind at peace? All I know, is that I love it, and it makes me happy. 20160422_130254_Richtone(HDR)

It’s about 10 am when we arrive at Avila Beach in San Luis Obispo. My legs can’t wait to get out of the van and walk around and the first step on the parking lot feels like heaven. I take in a deep breath of the salty air and it comforts me. I can already hear the waves crashing along the beach and I quickly grab a couple of things and begin to head off to the beach. Even though it’s early the beach already has some visitors on it, but lucky for me and my group we know an area that is less traversed. As I climb onto the pillow basalts to avoid the crashing waves I’m treated to a small but private stretch of beach. There isn’t a lot of sand at this part of the beach but that doesn’t matter. I’d rather look at the rocks anyways. I boulder up some of the structures and I perch myself up not too high but high enough just to get a better view. The sun is shinning and wind feels perfect and there are sea otters and seals playing in the water. It’s almost perfect here. I almost wished that we were staying longer than a couple of hours, but there is much to see and do, before arriving to camp.20160422_121351_Richtone(HDR)

We’ve only been driving for a half hour when the skies begin to pour with a vengeance. We knew before heading out, that we were going to get rain, but for a moment we forgot all about it, and felt surprised as the rain began to pour.The whippers on the van moved fast to keep the drops clear for a view of the street, but it didn’t seem enough. This storm was hitting hard. As we came closer to our next destination it began to lighten up dramatically. The once powerful and mighty storm was now just a light sprinkling and when we stopped, I couldn’t help but snap a few pictures. That’s when the music began to play in my head. I could hear Purple Rain playing and I felt a little sad about the recent lost of the artist known as Prince, but so happy to have known about his work before hand. It’s funny how a celebrity death can hit you so hard. You may not have ever meet them or knew them personally, but through their work you felt a connection. You grew up learning about yourself and making memories and having experiences to their work; so when they die, it’s like a piece of you died too. 20160422_142842_Richtone(HDR)

As we walked down to the Estero Bluffs we were treated to a field of blooming mustard plants before reaching the beach. Once at the beach we spent some time looking around. I found a couple of hidden plastic Easter Eggs, and I wondered who had an egg hunt here? One of the eggs was empty but the other had some candy in it, but the ants had already claimed it as their own. It was beautiful there at that beach. I got to see the remnants of the storm pass by and leave us and welcome back the blue sky and sunshine. Soon after that it was time to finally make our way down to camp to set up for the night.20160422_163904

I had never stayed at Morro Strand Campground before. It’s a little too close to  civilization for me, but it wasn’t too bad as it is right on the beach. I pitched my tent on a dune and then went for a walk along the beach as the sun began to set. The beach was littered with sand dollars and I watched the sandpipers congregating as they searched for food in the sea foam. Morro Rock towered in the distance in the evening glow. I watched in amazement for a while just trying to take in all the scenery. It really was a wonderful day for adventuring and I’m looking forward to getting a good nights rest. After all tomorrow will be another busy day. 20160422_195644_Richtone(HDR)

I’ll Meet You At the Trail…Or At Least I’ll Try To.

This past Sunday I was supposed to meet up some friends to hike a portion of the Mt. Wilson Trail in Arcadia California. We had been planning for over a week to meet up at the trail head at 7:30 am and hike up to at least Orchard Camp. I haven’t hiked this trail in about a year, and I remember it being very challenging. So I really did want to get an early start as Sunday was the projected hot day of the week with temperatures reaching the mid 80’s.

It’s 6:45 am and I’m barely getting out of bed. I rub my eyes in disbelief. It feels like I only just closed my eyes. It was as if I had blinked and jumped ahead in time. Last night was restless, but luckily I don’t feel groggy. I hurry to get ready and soon enough, I’m out the door. I look at the time and it’s already almost 7:30, well it looks like I’m not going to make it out there in time, even with the traffic being almost non existent, there is no way I’m getting that far in a few minutes.  I send a text message to my friends from a McDonald’s parking lot, letting them know I’m running late and that I’ll meet them on the trail. After I send the message I decide to grab an Egg McMuffin. I figured I was late already, might as well get some calories in me before I hit the trail. 20160417_122228_Richtone(HDR)

By the time I get to the trail head and reach the sign in box, it’s almost 8:30. I think to myself “Damn, I’m going to see them when their coming down the trail.” I decide to just enjoy as much of the trail as I can before I meet up with them and I proceed up the long steep hike towards the top of Mt. Wilson. The first portion of the trail is exposed to the east and there is no shade at all. The warm spring sun beats down on you as you climb higher and higher up the dusty trail to the top. Even though it’s still morning, I’m already wishing I started earlier. Other than the sun being very warm, I feel okay. I’m doing pretty well on this trail, even though I haven’t done a hike this strenuous since Flattop Mountain in the Summer (Which is easier than Wilson), I’m making good progress.


Soon I reach the first place most people take a rest at, and that is called First Water. It’s a nice shady area with a little creek going through it. Even though it’s a pleasant area I don’t stop long. I’m too concerned with finding my friends. So I continue on up the trail towards the next stop, Orchard Camp. It’s only two more miles up from First Water So I figure I should be seeing them soon.

20160417_102801_Richtone(HDR)This portion of the trail is so much nicer.
As the trees provide much needed cover from the sun. I think this is my favorite portion of the hike. It’s so beautiful, the trees, the mountains. The people seem more friendly and happy. It’s just so wonderful there. It was even better seeing a bunch of butterflies hanging around the trail. Everywhere I looked, I would see a butterfly. It would either be resting or flying about in the air. They made me happy and I had to stop and just enjoy them for a while.

As I approached Orchard Campground I thought I would finally see my friends, and then we could travel the rest of the trail together. You can imagine my surprise when I arrived and didn’t find them.Could they have gone up to the next stop? Maybe? But it was getting closer to being the hottest part of the day, and I didn’t feel like going any further with the heat. Perhaps I missed them when I stepped off onto a ledge to get some pics? It’s possible, only one way to find out, and that meant I would have to keep going and hope to find them. Somewhere down the trail.



As I began to begin my decent, something strange happened. I actually felt alone. I’ve gone on many adventures alone. It’s never bothered me before. So what’s changed? Me, I guess. Sometimes life just catches up to you, and sneaks in a hit when you least expect it. So I was alone to my thoughts as I rapidly descended down the trail. Now everything seemed just a little dimmer, a little quieter, a little colder. I don’t think I ever wanted a hike to end so soon. Usually I just relax and take it all in, the beautiful chaos that is nature, and I’m humbled and amazed, but not today.

As I was getting closer to the trail head, I kept seeing more and more people 20160417_102318_Richtone(HDR)beginning their journey, at the mid day point, in the hottest part of the day, and I wished them well in my mind. Some didn’t even seem to have water with them. Are they crazy? I thought. Surely, they must know that you shouldn’t attempt any trail without water. Then I saw a man with a beautiful all white Husky looking dog. They were making fast progress up the mountain, but the dog was heavily panting. As they passed I asked him, if he wanted any water for his dog, “Sure if you have any you can spare.” I quickly removed my Camelbak water bottle and unscrewed the top. As I began to slowly pour a stream of water the dog quickly began to lap up the water. She was very thirsty, and it was only the beginning of the trail. They still had easily a mile and a quarter to go before First Water. The dog quickly drank almost all of the water. She even managed to stick her tongue into the bottle to get even more water. I just smiled and let her have as much as she wanted. When she finished her owner thanked me and I’ll never forget this, but the dog gave me an incredible look. It was as if she was wondering where I was going, and why I wasn’t going with them. I told the owner it was a tough hike, and he said they wouldn’t be going too far. So I pet the dog on the head and I left.

As I exited the trail, I checked my phone for any messages from my friends, and I had a couple but nothing about their whereabouts on the trail. I checked Instagram and sure enough they had already posted some pics. So with that, and feeling a little defeated by the mountain, I decided it was time to head home for a much needed shower, and perhaps a victory, or in this case a defeat beer to enjoy on this beautiful warm spring afternoon. I feel like going back to this mountain soon. There is something about the challenge of it that I like. It’s tough, and demanding and unforgiving. A perfect place to hone yourself for a life of adventure. 20160417_122154

To the Next Unknown!

I feel tired. I slept somewhat good, and yet I’m still tired. The insomnia isn’t getting better. If anything it’s way out of balance. Days go by and I can barely get in a couple of hours and then I’ll have a day where I can’t stay awake as my body desperately tries to catch up on some much needed rest. It’s safe to say that despite everything my head feels like a mess. An all too common state for me. So common I actually feel weird without it. It’s practically the norm, and that’s what scares me.

If you’ve been a follower you know that I have had bouts of depression before, as well as thoughts of suicide. I can safely say I don’t feel suicidal now. A slip near the ledge of a mountain trail the other day, confirmed how much I really do want to live. Still with this resurgence of depression, I know it can only be a matter of time before the darkness totally takes a hold of me. Which is why I’m doing this now, well maybe not so much the blogging. Actually that’s not true. I find blogging very therapeutic. There is just something so liberating with sharing your world with total strangers470336_3663690064846_1134808599_o

Anyways, back on topic. I guess this is me announcing that I’m going to be starting anti depressants, or at least I hope I will be. I’m currently getting ready to see my doctor, and we’ll go through everything. I’ll tell my doctor that exercising is not working. I’m loosing weight, which is nice, but I don’t feel better afterwards anymore. I started reading more, but I find myself loosing interest no matter the genre, and I don’t finish the book. Socializing has been difficult, to say the least. I don’t really make plans. I just text a bunch of my friends to see who is free to do something, and that doesn’t always work. I don’t blame them if there busy doing something else. They have lives after all, it’s just hard for me to  make plans because I never know how bad it’s going to be on certain days. The good thing is more often that not, I still have the will to get up and do something. Even if I have to do it by myself I still go out for a walk, or grab a bite to eat, or even a pint.170759_1862045229793_621927_o

I don’t even feel bad doing stuff by myself. I’ve been very independent throughout my life. I’m actually quite use to doing things by myself. So that doesn’t bother me at all. Just sometimes I wish I had another human to talk to, just so I don’t have to think about the things in my head. It’s kind of strange how things change. I’ve been very content at being alone, I travel by myself. I use to prefer it that way. Just me and nature. Discovering each other. Being pushed to my edge and coming back home victorious from a desert or a mountain. It was great, but now it’s not the same. Now I feel the solitude. The defining quiet when you are in the middle of nowhere and you can hear your own heartbeat. It’s maddening. Now I’m eager to have a companion come along with me. So much so if someone can’t come, I now delay the trip, just so I won’t be alone. I know that brings comfort to my family and friends, but I don’t like it. I miss being comfortable in my own solitude.

So wish me luck, as I start a new adventure.IMG_20160418_083541 I have no idea what is going to happen once
I change my brain chemistry. I don’t know if I’ll even change or not. Everyone reacts different, and it’s a little scary when you think about it. I’m stepping into a new unknown. A trail that has never been treaded on. A trail that I can only hope will take me to a better place. I guess it is a lot like exploring. You set your sights for the horizon, and you not only hope to see something new and beautiful, but you also hope it’s better than where you are currently at. So don’t fret for me, instead let’s raise a glass to new horizons.

To Bishop! A 248 Mile Detour

We headed out of Short Canyon kicking dust up as we went down the dirt trail. As if we were saying “so long and thanks for everything!” We knew our destination was way out of the way, but sometimes when you are having so much fun on the road, you just don’t care. You go for it, and so we did. As we got back onto the 395 and we headed north. I think we worried for a bit if we made the right choice. I’ll be honest, a little doubt sunk into my mind, and I’m always up for a spontaneous adventure. Yet, the more I thought about it, the better I felt. It’s just an extra four hours, I said to myself. We can do this!20160331_164242_Richtone(HDR)

After driving for a half hour we started to see the basalt flows and the red cinder cone fast approaching in the distance. We instantaneously knew we had to make a quick stop at Fossil Falls. If you are ever traveling through California and on the 395, and you want to stretch your legs and see something cool. Then you must make a stop here. The basalt flows were shaped and changed from rivers and glaciers, making the rock here smooth and polished with large potholes. It’s really cool to see the large holes and the sudden drop in the rock. It looks like a waterfall made up of rock. To the north of the fields you’ll see a large red cone, called a cinder cone. It’s an extinct volcano! How cool is that?! Okay enough geeking out about rocks, onto the adventure!  IMG_20160402_223051

20160331_150416_Richtone(HDR)After leaving Fossil Falls we kept traveling north, anxiously anticipating are arrival at Erick Schat’s. Even though we were pressed for time, we still made random stops off the road. Just so that we could stop and appreciate the glorious Sierra Nevada Mountains. I swear if you ever get the chance to see them in the afternoon light, you will feel in awe and humbled by their presence. There is no other way to describe their glory. It’s something you have to just witness with your own eyes. Only then will you know what truth I am telling you. Only then will you have your breath taken away. 20160331_160415

After we arrived in Bishop, we pulled into Schat’s where we got whatever bread we could and then we were off, back on the road. Enjoying our bounty of bread and the open road, we felt good, joyous even. I think it was this time that really made the trip. Sure we saw some of nature’s grand spectacles and have had a blast up to this point. But now we were having a carpool karaoke session and it was absolutely fantastic! We totally got into the moment and it nearly lasted the whole ride home. I don’t think I have ever had so much fun driving home as I did on that trip. We sang, we danced, we ate, and we took pictures of the setting sun behind the Sierras. It was magical. I almost didn’t want it to end. It was one of those rare beautiful moments that you share with a person. Those rare moments that you will keep forever, wherever you go. Those are my favorite moments. Those are the moments that I hope to always have on all of my adventures.  20160331_185644_Richtone(HDR)

Short Canyon = Short Adventure

As we left the Trona Pinnacles and headed out on the lonely 178 into Ridgecrest. I couldn’t believe how surreal things were. The pinnacles and all their splendor still lingered in my mind even though the thought of seeing more desert wildflowers excited me for the days adventure. The geology surrounding the 178 was a sight to see. The rock formations and canyons were excellent, it made it hard for me to look at the map while my friend drove. I’m not sure if it was because I’ve never been here or maybe it was because I don’t fully trust google maps, but we stopped at the BLM Field Office in order to get better directions to Short Canyon, a place that supposedly had some great wildflowers.20160331_121029

After getting some great information and a map at BLM we were off again and this time with a better sense of direction and plan. Even though I received good directions we still missed our exit off the 14, and had to turn around. We blew our exit by a good seven minutes too, but then we saw a Mobil gas station, and figured we’d stop there to make sure we were on the right track. I must say this was the worst stop we made on our trip, as the bathrooms were filthy and the customer service was not great either, but at least I found out we were right next to the entrance to the Canyon.

As we headed up the dusty dirt road we would soon see what looked to be a big 4X4 in distress. It hung partially off the side of the road and I could see a woman bent down near the front passenger tire. We wondered if they needed help, but before I could get out and ask, another woman was already approaching our vehicle. She informed me that they were stuck on a rock. I could tell they had been there for some time now, as she seemed frustrated and exhausted by the situation. So with out any further delay I was off to help them out as best I could.

2016-04-04 18.18.01

Photo by Miranda H.

When I got closer I could see one woman lying underneath the large truck, she had a metal dog dish in hand and was attempting to dig the rock out. 20160331_142446_Richtone(HDR)Another woman was spotting her and after discussing a plan of attack in order to get the rock from underneath the axle without damaging it we decided that I was going to push the rock down with my legs. It worked slightly as it got the rock away from the axle but the rock was still too high, and could cause some real damage if the truck were to try and move over it. We tried to dig it out and push it some more and after a few failed attempts I decided it was time for a new strategy. I crawled underneath the truck with a long dog leash and wrapped it around the rock. I then began to pull towards me, which was really hard considering I was laying flat on my stomach. Luckily the rock began to move. Soon two of the women began to dig around the rock, one was using the tire iron and it gave me an idea.

I knew we just needed the right kind of leverage to get the rock out, so I asked if I could borrow it for a moment. The woman kindly and enthusiastically abide. I dug one end of the tire iron underneath the bottom of the rock and with one hand pushed on the other side of the iron. It began to lift the rock up and as it did I used my other hand to push the rock forward. “That’s working!” I heard one lady shout and soon three of us were working together to get the rock out. I would pry and lift the rock while two of the women would use the dog leash to pull the rock out. We had the rock out in no time. 20160331_142453_Richtone(HDR)

Soon the truck was free and they were able to get out of the rough part of the trail. I then moved the rock out from the middle of the road with some help from two of the women, as it was a large and heavy rock. The four laddies were really happy and thankful to be out of that predicament. I smiled and told them it wasn’t a problem as I was covered in head to toe of dirt from the road. They then asked for my name and where I was from, I told them and they seemed to know the town that I was from. As they shouted it’s name in disbelief. I told them to have a great day and try not to get stuck again, and as I started to walk back to my friend and her car, I heard one of them say “Wait!” I turned to look and the eldest one was reaching into her wallet to pull out some money.

I didn’t want to accept the money, as I was just happy to be able to solve their problem, but she insisted and it would be rude not to accept the token of gratitude. So I accepted and thanked her for the money. Soon they were driving off back to Ridgecrest and waving at me from their lifted truck. I waved back and smiled and then went back to the car. Where we easily made it up the sandy slope (their truck was too heavy)  and into the canyon. We parked the car and started scrambling up the rocky cliffs. 20160331_140025

It was a beautiful day out in the canyon. The sun was bright but not too hot, the wildflowers covered the canyon floor in a vibrant yellow and we were feeling like we were on top of the world on the large boulders of the cliff face. I think it was that moment that really solidified that we weren’t ready to go home yet. So we both agreed some Eric Schat’s in Bishop would be a good reward to end the day. So once again we were off to jump back on the open road. Seeking adventure and baked goods. 20160331_140504


Trona Pinnacles: Discovey Among Giants

I looked at my friend and sighed, it had been a long week and I felt like escaping and I said to her “Do you want to go on an adventure?”

“When?” she asked anxiously.

“Soon…” I said with the a subtle half smile.

A week later and were hitting the road. Traveling up the long and straight 395. We were just outside of the city of Adelanto, when we started to see the desert in its rarest fashion; completely covered in wildflowers. We quickly pulled off to the side of the road and anxiously greeted the wild blooms. The floor was covered in yellow and sprinkled here and there with the occasional purple and orange. The flowers reached out as far as the eye could see, in all directions. It was magical and surreal. It brought out a joy in me that I haven’t felt in a while. I almost wanted to lay in the flowers and make snow angels in them, but I didn’t want to destroy their beauty for a few seconds of pleasure. After a few more moments we were back in the car and out onto the road.20160330_155411_Richtone(HDR)

It was nearly five p.m. when we reached Ridgecrest and we needed to stop for a couple of much needed supplies; such as chips, firewood and beer for the evening. We had the option of continuing further north in hopes of seeing more wildflowers or start heading east to the Trona Pinnacles, and we decided to go to the wildflowers the next day. So we were off to the Pinnacles to set camp and have a much needed and deserved dinner.20160330_180147_Richtone(HDR)

As we pulled up to the Pinnacles the afternoon light was hitting them just right and I swear there was a sense of awe as we bared witness to the spectacle. There were only a couple of cars in the area were we decided to make camp, but it didn’t appear they were going to be staying for the night. It looked like we were going to have the Pinnacles all to ourselves for the night. As we set up camp and began to start cooking, the wind picked up, with a vengeance. It blew out my MSR Pocket Rocket and bent my Eureka tent almost flat. I knew if we didn’t find a way to break the wind we would have to move everything to the other side of the Pinnacles. Which in retrospect might have been a better choice, but instead I just moved the suv to block the bulk of the wind. It worked out pretty well but it still made cooking difficult to accomplish. Still I was able to make some al pastor tacos with rice and get the camp fire roaring. 20160330_185552_Richtone(HDR)

Later the wind died down and we enjoyed the warmth of the fire and the view of the milky way above us. It’s humbling really, to look up and see so many stars. Knowing how big and far away they are. To realize how long it takes that light from the stars to reach our eyes. Nothing else can make you feel so small in such a good way. You feel at peace basking in the dim glow of the night stars, or at least I do. I swear the view of the stars out here, in the middle of nowhere, is worth it’s weight in gas alone. 20160330_184953_Richtone(HDR)

The next morning we enjoyed some omelets for breakfast and broke camp. We then went and hiked and explored among the Pinnacles. At one point I climbed up to the top of one of the pinnacles and sat there enjoying it’s perspective. It is something so opening and humbling, just sitting up somewhere high and enjoying the views. There is just something about being in that moment. The silence, the beauty, the peace, it’s all up there, just waiting for you to discover it. After spending time walking amongst the giants made of tufa. We decided it was time to leave this alien landscape in search of new adventures. 20160331_105033

As we drove out of the dusty bumpy road, I found that we kept looking back. Looking at the pinnacles rising out of the flat desert land. Defying time, and nature. It was inspirational, and I felt much better about things. After all time changes everything, but sometimes what it leaves is something that can be beautiful. Maybe if I can only learn one thing from the tufa, it’s that it’s okay to weather. Just let time and the elements weather the bad stuff, and I might be surprised with the beauty it leaves behind.  20160331_112103