Sunday, July 26, 2020

Though I'd Better Put This out There So You won't Forget Me

I forgot that this trip was the maiden voyage of the new trailer. Remember last October some a..hole stole the Freedom Express during the Pacific Gas & Electric power shutdown. Even though the Sacramento Sheriff's Department found it in December, we surely didn't want it back. Who knows who was doing what in it. Gross........

Again as a reminder, we had reserved a space on March 20th at South Shore Lake Camanche to do the maiden voyage of the new trailer and check out all the systems and as we drove in, found out they had just closed the lake at 5:30 that morning. 

Since my wife was furloughed for 3 months we had plenty of time to go somewhere and check the trailer out EXCEPT, everybody else was closed too. 

So we waited for our trip to Hope Valley last weekend to do the best checking we could even though it was dry camping instead of full hookups.

We got there Friday afternoon and set up.

The new trailer doesn't have a name like the "Clipper" or the "Freedom Express" because all they gave it was a number. Calling it the 2295 just doesn't seem right.


Left side

Right side
I want to mention a little trip I took while pressure washing the trailer. A while back I bought a pressure washer from Lowe's. 1800psi electric. Somehow I got entangled in the hoses and down I went. Couldn't have been on grass, noooooo. Had to be not only in the middle of the street, but on my left side which is also the side of the bad hip. THEN, trying to get up I fell again. Same place, same side. Needless to say I had a bit of trouble walking and some really sore ribs, but fear not I have recovered. Nothing broken, only bruised.

Off we went.

Once we got set up, all I could do was sit.

Because of this we decided to leave the kayaks home, but I did bring my fishing gear.

Friday night left us with a very nice sunset although it is a little hard to photograph through the hill that is directly West of our camp site.

Saturday morning I was still in considerable pain so I passed on fishing and settled for healing.

Saturday afternoon brought the usual Summer thunder storms that one would expect in the Sierra's. A little rain didn't stop us from BBQing though.

BBQ in the rain.

Sunday morning was sunshine and blue skies. Still in pain, I didn't want to attempt the hike down to the shore of Upper Blue Lake to fish so I called it a fishless weekend do to circumstances based on stupidity.

Let me explain the spot we had. They called it a "double" space.  We had enough room for us, my son and his family, my wife's daughter and her family, and maybe another couple or two.

One tent site

Second tent site
Sunday afternoon brought more thunderstorms, but this time it was lightning, thunder, rain, and wind. The good part is that they only last an hour or so. 

I'm now past the pain from my little trip and awaiting our next trip at the end of August which is our annual trip to Upper Lake. There will be kayaking, fishing, and my son and daughter-in-law will be there. Can't wait. 

Might get in a day or two of fishing between now and then. 

Stay tuned. 

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Well, I Am Doing Something

I do believe that we are going to get a chance to try out our new and currently never used travel trailer on the 17th. I made reservations at Hope Valley Campground back in February as it is one of our "must do" camping places each year.

I needed to get out of the house. One can only handle "house arrest" for so long and just going to the grocery store doesn't do it. As soon as my wife left for work, I hopped into the truck and headed upcountry. I checked the DFW fish stocking website and because it's the 4th of July weekend, they stocked everywhere. Yeh, I did take my fishing rods.

My main reason for the trip was, 1, to make sure I could put our trailer in the spot reserved at Hope Valley Campground. 2, make sure the campground was even open, which it was. I had to reserve a spot I had not parked in before because EVERYBODY is suddenly camping. A way of social distancing and sheltering at home. Your trailer is as good as your home for sheltering. Not sure about the tent campers though. 3, see if fires were going to be allowed in the fire rings. They are.

As I pulled out of the campground I saw a fly fisherman tempting the trout on the West Fork of the Carson River which is right across the street from the campground. Now I've tried fishing for those trout. You can offer them the most luscious fly, fattest worm, or any flavor of Power Bait and they spit in your face. Over the years I've come to the conclusion that if they are holding in that certain spot at the end of the big pool, you need not waste your time.

I headed up the road toward Upper and Lower Blue Lakes. I wanted to make sure everything was set for the upcoming weekend. Wanted to make sure we could get the kayaks in at Upper Blue and since they stocked this past week, I hope, fishing might be good.

First thing I noticed is that ALL the PG&E campgrounds (maybe about 100 spaces) were closed. That isn't going to make a lot of people happy. I was pleased that they graded the road all the way so you didn't need 4 wheel drive or end up shaking your teeth out of your head.     

 Got to my usual parking spot and took my rods, chair, one tacklebox, and my net and started down to the spot I usually fish. It was slow going with the hip, back, and leg problems and I wasn't going to make more than one trip down and one trip up so I packed as much as I could carry in one hand and used my cane in the other for a "third" leg.

Set up and put two rods out with rainbow Power Bait (what else). Waited. Waited some more. Took some pictures.

Across to the right. Still a little snow

The dam and kayak launching area. 

The far end of the lake
I've learned over the years that Power Bait loses it's potency after a while. When you have a couple of jars open and you're old like me, you forget (remember it's been a while since I Power Bait fished) which one is the oldest. After an hour, I reeled in my lines and put on PB from the other jar. Apparently that one had lost it's potency too because nothing.

So I bit the bullet and opened a new jar. I buy them by the six pack. Wasn't 15 minutes and one rod started bobbing. Very light nibble and by the time I was ready to set the hook, he was long gone. Being the experienced Power Bait fisherman (stop laughing) I am, I think it probably bit and the water being really cold, probably cracked the bait and off he went.

So even though I didn't bring one to hand, I did get a bite, but time was a factor so I packed up and made the exhausting walk up the hill. As you can see in the picture above, that is the hardest shore for me to walk on even with a cane.

But I'll be back on the 17th on my kayak and with fishing rods in hand. I'll also have pictures of the "still to be used" new trailer and the camping area.

One part of the trip I forgot to mention. Coming back down the hill, I passed about 30 RV's going up. I do hope they find a place because it looked like everything was full. Even the "dry" camping spots along Blue Lakes Rd were already full. It seemed like every nook and cranny one could put a RV into, there was one already there.

Stay tuned.