With a couple of weeks left in November, we've decided to start heading towards Breck. Most of the route will take us on highway 80, through Nevada, Utah and Wyoming.
We love boondocking. Boondocking, or dry camping, is when you camp without water or electric hookups, usually without other campers around and often in unorganized areas. With Nick taking some time off to make the drive to Breck, we could camp anywhere we wanted, as we did not need electric or cell service for his work.
As we left Tahoe and headed through Nevada, we were pleasantly surprised at how mountainous the scenery was. We did not make it too far on our first driving day, and found a free recreation area near Battle Mountain, Nevada. Other than some car campers joining us during the night, we had the place to ourselves and it was quite beautiful.
The next day we continued our way east, hoping to camp for free near the Boneville Salt Flats, Nick and I have both been to Utah several times and never have had the chance to check the Salt Flats out. Britt found a website stating the area where camping was permitted, but, upon arrival, there were signs saying other wise. We checked at a local gas station and he seemed confident that it was ok, but we decided not to chance it. So instead, we pulled the RV over to the side of the road and hopped out to check out the Salt Flats. The sun was just beginning to set, and the reflections on the water were pretty crazy looking.
Not wanting to set up camp in the dark, we headed east another 45 minutes to another recreation area near some sand dunes. As we arrived, the wind was starting to pick up, throwing sand around like crazy. Once set up and safely in the RV, we checked the weather report to find that 25 + mph winds were coming through that night. We got zero sleep. Thankfully we parked the RV so that the wind was not cross blowing us, but it sounded SO loud on the inside. Not to mention, sand was starting to blow in through the cracks of our windows and the air inside the RV was starting to smell musty. Thankfully morning came and we were still standing. Still pretty windy out, Nick finally found use for my swimming goggles as he battled the sand and wind tearing down camp.
Heading towards Salt Lake City, we decided to park close to the city, right on the Salt Lake, thus paying for camping. We chose to stay a couple of days and hang with our friend Eric and some of his coworkers, and got a good tour of the local restaurants . Neither of us had visited the Temple before, and we got some museum time in downtown. In March, we are planning on staying in Park City for a month, so we took some time to scout out the local ski resorts and check out Little Cottonwood Canyon.
Continuing to head east into Wyoming, we ran into some wind warnings, forcing us to stop at some truck stops for a couple of nights. Winds were coming in at 50+ mph and trucks were getting flipped over on the highway. This was a nervous time for us because the wind was starting up and then dying down. We had to carefully watch the road conditions looking for a break and then decide if we were going to risk it. This proved successful for us until we reached Elk Mountain on 80. Road warnings made us pull over at a gas station, where we stopped to regroup and wait it out. While there, several truck drivers came to talk us, making sure we were not going to try and chance it. One driver suggested an alternate route, taking us around the mountain instead of right through the pass. After a couple of hours of looking online at weather reports and trying to decide what to do, we decided to give route 20 a shot. Thankfully, the wind was much calmer and we made it safely around the mountain.
Wanting to keep going, we decided to drive to a Cabelas in Denver and try and find a campground near our friends house in the morning. Britt had gotten lazy with her parking lot etiquette and did not call ahead of time or look online to see if overnight parking was allowed. Upon arrival, we saw the sign for RV camping, and the potable water, and started to set up camp. Of course once we were all done we noticed the sign stating "No overnight parking allowed" and Nick determined we were going to have to go somewhere else. Calling Walmart down the street, they said it was fine to overnight camp there and upon arrival, we saw signs stating otherwise. By this time we were so tired and did not care, so we called it a night. Glad to be in Denver.