Friday, November 5, 2010

Goodbye Horton Creek, Hello Pleasant Valley

When I returned from a visit to Pasadena to Horton Creek on Monday 25 October, I found my trailer nose had been pushed sideways about 6 feet off its levellors up against a boulder and a tough little desert bush--one more foot and it might have gone tumbling down the slope. My neighbor came over and told me about the 80-90 mph winds that had blown the previous night. I was not inside during the slide, ThankYouJesus!

I re-levelled as best I could, digging the tires into the ground (jack'em up, dig out under 'em, lower 'em down.) Then I got another tow from Winfred (handyman at the place I bought my trailer) and his buddies, down out of Horton Creek across 395 into Pleasant Valley, an Inyo County campground maintained on the Owens River as it leaves the Dam and meanders out of the Gorge towards Bishop. (see the Gorge wall bluff in photo). It is a designated Native Brown Trout Restoration Zone, catch-and-release only, barbless hooks and other restrictions.  It seems to attract guys who wannabe fly fishermen and have bought the outfits and the stuff, but aren't up to the hikes, rapids and bears of more pristine habitats. No, haven't seen a woman doing it. No, haven't seen a mis-matched, muddy, used-looking outfit. If you want to eat fish for dinner, you get a chair with a clip-on umbrella and sit by a lake or reservoir with a cold drink in hand until the nice hatchery rainbow jerks your line.

Winfred and buddies levelled my trailer in such a way that the door stuck.  At first I assumed it to be wind-slide damage, but the next day on my own I learned an important levelling lesson: the floor of the trailer is flexible and can skew as well as tilt; experimentally I had raised front right and back left corners about one inch, and lowered their opposites -- and it worked! The door fits its frame again. I also bought a 5-foot long bubble level from Ace Hardware, a truly necessary tool.

Then I got sick with winter's first nasty virus. I was all-over-again Grateful to Be Indoors during this ordinary event. The first night I was sneezing my brains out, some giant River Racoons seemed to think my little trailer was just an especially large cooler, and if they could push it over, all the goodies would tumble out. Resident Magpies and Crows conduct an ongoing intimidation match over campground leftovers, and they relay-perch on the roof of my trailer, not quietly. 

Tommorrow I get a hitch installed on the Tacoma. Next blog: Learning to Tow a Small Trailer. 

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