I love working on an Incident Management Team (IMT) or a more familiar term my Fire Team for 14 years! I look forward to each assignment because it is an opportunity for me to participate in something that is helpful and has purpose; to save lives and property. Though I don’t fight flames I support those that do and that is also my privilege. To that end most of my summer wanderings are tied to fire assignments. This year (so far) has taken me to the small town of Panaca Nevada where the rain did most of the work for the firefighters and we were home in 4 days. Panaca is the oldest surviving Morman settlement in Eastern Nevada and history was only a block away from the Incident Command Post (ICP). I wandered around the oldest building in eastern Nevada, the Mormon (or Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints) meeting house/school. A week later I was in Garden Valley Idaho, only an hour from home on the Whiskey Complex, where a few friends and I spent a lunch hour wandering the Pioneer Cemetery and enjoying the history and peace of that place. A few days later we took a lunch break hike up the Station Creek trail exercising off some of the carb heavy fire food.
Leaving there I passed home long enough to do laundry and mow the lawn before turning the Escape south to another out of the way place 60 miles south of Ely Nevada; the Kirsch Wildlife Refuge where to the unsuspecting visitor may seem an odd place for a refuge, the middle of nowhere with views of sagebrush and dirt roads. What did I find there? Hot springs and bass filled lakes that do not boast a cottonwood tree or bush to mark their existence in the flat landscape. Amazing the places that are tucked off of the main roads and kept a pretty good secret by the locals. It is a far piece of blacktop to reach the Refuge so you might have to be a die hard bass fisherman to brave the distance. And yes, that little blue shiny line is water!
Tomorrow my Escape will be pointed west toward the Oregon town of Roseburg that the Oregon travel logs call “Land of the Umpqua” ; another 9 hour road trip across beautiful high country deserts and steep sided mountains and rushing rivers. I just checked out some hikes I think I’ll take on my way home …Thundering Waters, waterfalls, waterfalls, waterfalls … Umpqua National Forest and Roseburg BLM District. Cool Beans!