June 17, 2016
Leaving SandyEggo Behind!
With the start delayed by over a week with me unable to walk we need to change the route north to family and to make up a few days. But not so late that I-5 is the only option. Bypassing the obvious stops on 395 we exit from Cajone Pass toward Lancaster and Palmdale. CA-138 and 14 will run parallel to 395 until Inyokern. Last time up this way the only attraction was the Borax Museum in Boron, the place was a bump in the desert. Now Mojave is an official Space Port, home to SpaceX, Virgin Galactic and others.
Not good timing, both the Blackbird Airpark and the adjacent Legacy Museum are only open on weekends.
So here’s a few pics thru the fence of what appears to be the original ‘Vomit Comet’, a ‘UFO’ and the official Blackbird.
I’d go this way again, easy drive on 2-lane blacktop, what 395 used to be … back in the day
Although the Lockheed Martin's Skunkworks was not closed, visitation was certainly not encouraged!
And the old Mojave air-graveyard has a new name and logo! Now the Mojave Air and Space Port!
But despite all the news of the booming success of SpaceX, Virgin Galactic and the others who call Mojave home, there is no Visitor Center, just a glassed enclose of a replica of the Ansari X Prize winner Spaceship One. But the graveyard is still there!
Mojave does have a couple RV parks, but being a weekday we chose to take our chances at the Jawbone OHV area. On weekends this area will be awash with ATVs, but this day it
was quite quiet, with a decent Verizon signal (2 bars) and FREE!
It’s just a few miles south of Red Rock Canyon State Park and FREE vs $26 to camp in the park. The FREE day use area is on the east side of CA-14. The Red Cliffs Nature Trail is a 1.6 mile loop, but easily extended to the next bluff just beyond the park boundary.
It’ll be a long day, but Fran is sleeping off a nasty cold. So much of the Owens Valley ... we’ve already done, and rather than wake her, I chose to do the distance to Bishop. She’s look’n much better for the rest!
In Bishop a stop at Erick’s, but skip his bakkery and head to the deli – best turkey sandwich on earth! Aj also recommends their PB&J! Also opted for the chili/cheese/bacon bread fingers for snacks up the hill. Nah! Stick with the original chili/cheese. To keep the price down after adding bacon, the chili and cheese are way reduced! YUCK!
A mention from Becky indicated site might be available at Big Springs. Only 3 sites open and only Site 1 level enough for our RV. The spring is not the gushing, bubbling from when CA had water, but it is still providing pure Sierra Mountain Spring Water. Verizon cell with 2 bars and decent data service.
It’s still a great place to fill the water bottles for morning coffee and the next days hiking. BUT beware the rocks in Deadman Creek are not good stepping stones!
A bit of cleaning with bacterial soap and a toothbrush (yes that hurts!) and some dressing good to go!