Penny and Bob's Great Adventure - 2012 travel blog

Hundreds of wind turbines

Fire in the distance

Motors for the turbines

Part of a tower ready to go to the fields


7/16/12

On the road by 10:00 a.m. (at least we haven’t forgotten how to do that!) and had an easy drive down I-15 into California then onto CA-58 to Mojave where we will be staying at the Spaceport RV Park for 2 days or so. Along the way, we stopped at a Pilot Truck Center to weigh the truck and trailer and get gas. We found we’re about 500 to 1000 lbs overweight, depending on which Dodge tow chart you use.

Went out this evening, back to the Edwards AFB area, to drop off a travel bug at the cache near there. That’s the main reason we stopped here but I think we’re going to stay a couple of days since there’s a lot to see here and we’re not due in Yosemite until Thursday.

There are hundreds of wind turbines in the valley and up the hill here and when you come towards the town from the east at night, as you come over a hill, there are hundreds of red lights, all blinking in unison. Since we had seen them in the daylight, we knew what they were but for a first timer coming through, it must be a startling sight.

7/17/12

Just out doing some geocaching and exploring around the area. Although it only seems like a small old town, it really has a lot of rich history. From 1884 to 1889, the town was the western end of the 165-mile, twenty-mule team borax wagon route originating at Harmony Borax Works in Death Valley. We'll be in Death Valley, too, later this month.

It's also rich in aviation history. From Wikipedia: "Located near Edwards Air Force Base, Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake, and Palmdale Regional Airport, Mojave has a rich aerospace history as well. Its airport used to be a U.S. Marine air base. The airport is now the home of various aerospace companies and institutions such as Scaled Composites and the civilian National Test Pilot School. The town is home to the Rutan Voyager, the first aircraft to fly around the world nonstop and unrefueled. The airport is also the first inland spaceport in the United States, the Mojave Air and Space Port, which was the location of the first private spaceflight, the launch of SpaceShipOne on June 21, 2004. In the fictional Star Trek universe, it is the home town of Captain Christopher Pike.

After winning the Ansari X Prize, Burt Rutan quipped that the isolation of the Mojave Desert fosters invention. "Innovation is what we do here," he said, "because there's not much else to do in Mojave".


We drove over to California City for a "look-see" and enjoyed a nice lunch there. On the way back, we noticed big plumes of smoke behind one of the mountains and determined it was a forest fire...creeping up the mountain towards all the wind turbines. Later we read it consumed about 1700 acres before they got it under control and down.



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