The road to Great Basin NP 🏞

To say I’m a glutton for punishment is an understatement. But I don’t see it that way….

After an insane December 2021 work schedule, I plowed away planning a kick ass January adventure trip. Surviving a 112 hour week of the inaugural Pop Warner Super Bowl at Camping World Stadium, straight into my first bowl game season over the holidays and end capping with biking my 22nd Walt Disney World Marathon weekend, I was craving my own adventure into the wilderness.

So after waking up at 1:45am and biking 26+ miles behind our marathon walkers on an abnormally hot December day in Florida, I beelined to my parents house to leave my car for a month. After a quick shower and early dinner of my favorite local pizza, we jetted off to the airport to catch my $22 direct flight to Vegas. And with Global Entry perks, I’m through security in 3 mins flat with only my 2 carry-on book bags.

My plan was to drive to the outskirts of Great Basin National Park the same night, so that I can maximize my daylight hours the next day (winter season is much shorter = less time to explore). But I should mention that it is a 4.5 hour marathon to reach the only motel located in Baker, NV. So if you do the math….

  • Flight lands at 10:52pm EST
  • Rental car shuttle & car finally received at 12am EST.
  • Time change 2 hours = 10pm MST
  • Drive to Baker = 4.5 hours (I did it in 4 hours flat)
  • Arrive 2am = 5am EST
  • I’ve now been up for 27 hours!

My secret sauce to powering through sleep deprivation: Mountain Dew, gummy bears and a new playlist!

Besides a few stray cows and deer crossing the road, my ride was almost all straight due north on a flat road with the speed limit of 80 mph.

Upon arriving to my room (which was left unlocked due to my extra late – or early technically – checkin), it is always great to find out what I have forgotten during that first time unpacking. Because it’s always something, as I tend to stuff and squeeze everything into my vacuum bags at least a week in advance.

This go round, I was delighted to find my mini shampoo had exploded! Fortunately, I had just purchased a clear toiletry bag and avoided a bigger spillage. But still had to wash off all my bottles prior to catching some much needed zzzz’s.

And I had forgotten the torture of a cold toilet seat. Enough said.

My single unit heater I swear kept spitting out cold air, so I resorted to just turning the itty bitty table space heater into my warmth maker as I shivered under the covers.

So my missing item for my January dream trip….. my hairbrush. I guess I’m fortunate after 4 hours of sleep that temps will hover around 25-35 degrees for my first day of hikes and I’ll be sporting a warm beanie. As there is no store in town, and even the single gas tank is self service.

After sleeping a few hours, I stepped out into the chill of a winter Nevada morning to catch a glimpse of the sun peering over Mt. Wheeler (the highest point in the state at 13,064 feet and home to it’s only glacier too).

Let the adventure continue….

Published by elliottcm

Love adventure travel, work hard & play hard, happy in both extremes - relaxing on a remote beach or rappelling down cliffs, take joy in simple things, love being on & near the water, visited 55 countries & 47 states so far in this crazy beautiful life! Goals by my 50th birthday - 50 states. 75 countries. 50 national parks. Be in Antarctica on my big day.

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