But fate and the desert intervened. Instead of heading home, we're stuck in Fallon NV, waiting for a mechanic's verdict on the vehicular overheating that marooned us in our faithful Subaru out in the sands this afternoon. We'll get out eventually, more or less expensively, but for the time being, here's the story.
You see, it is not only Colorado that boasts a huge sand dune. Nevada has one too.
It rises 600 feet above the Great Basin and boasts additional attractions.
We took the side trip and it was hot, interesting, and a little spooky.
The old station where riders shifted to fresh horses has been reduced to a rather sad pile of volcanic rocks. We figured the area was probably hard on both men and horses. The Pony Express only lasted one and a half years, then being supplanted by the telegraph and the railroad.
Out there in the desert, only the lizards seem to be thriving.
When we got back to the car and started up, we immediately observed that the temperature gauge was reading above the "H" (HOT). We poured in all the water we had and set the heater to full on -- but the gauge didn't go down. So we pulled over, flagged down folks with a working cell phone (curse your weak service AT&T) and waited for a tow from AAA.
The scenery was lovely, but I sure didn't want to stay out there any longer than necessary. And, amazingly, we were there less than an hour before the rescue truck appeared.
Now we're lodged in a motel in Fallon, looking at this view out our window and waiting for the verdict on the faithful 'Ru. This too shall pass and no human harm done.
UPDATE: Only minor vehicular harm done as well. Dave's Automotive of Fallon found a Subaru thermostat to replace the one that had seized up leading to boiling coolant. We were on our way by noon Saturday. Thanks Fallon; you were kind to marooned wanderers.