|Fri, 04 Jan: The winds have finally abated somewhat so we got things ready to roll in a very laid back manner and finally rolled wheels a minute or two before ten. That's a late start for us, but we were planning a short day so no rush mate!
We used city streets to reach CA 14, which added time to the trip but saved about ten miles in distance. Plus, anything we could do to avoid the I 5 and CA 14 interchange was for the better. Once on CA 14 we climbed steadily toward Escondido Pass. At 3,258' it is the highest point between Castaic and Palmdale. Carpe wanted to climb the entire hill in second overdrive, but we shifted down to first overdrive to keep engine revs closer to the torque curve.
At Palmdale we stayed on CA 14 another 35 miles or so to Mojave where we headed east on CA 58. This was about fifteen miles further than retracing our route along CA 138, but is far more scenic. We opted for scenic.
Mojave is the home of Edwards AFB and is also the home of Burt Rutan's Spaceport. We didn't see or hear any rocket planes, but Edwards has always been an interesting place. On CA 58 we went thru Four Corners, which is the intersection of CA 58 and US 395. In years bygone it was little more than a gas station, but it now has multiple stations plus restaurants and other commercial establishments. Even sports a red lite now (which, of course, turned red as we approached!)
South of Barstow we transitioned to I 15 north for a few miles and then I 40 east for another 25 miles to Newberry Springs. We're currently boondocking at a closed truck stop north of the interstate. It is fairly quiet and we have oodles of room. We are also near the main line of the AT&SF railroad, but there are no grade crossings so we've yet to hear a whistle.
Tomorrow we'll continue to Laughlin and look forward to visiting with Ray & Cathie. It has been far too long since we've gotten our hugs.
Today's summary: 160 miles averaging 8.6 mpg. Not too bad given it was mostly uphill.