Adventure - Page 7
24 DAYS ON THE ROAD
In the morning we packed up and re-connected the teardrop to the Honda. Visited Midway Geyser Basin, Prismatic Pool, and other amazing geothermals on our way south. Skipped Old Faithful as we had seen it on our first road trip together in 1981. On to Coulter Bay Campground in Grand Teton National Park where we picked a sunny, level spot in case of a possible solar shower attempt. Made lunch, then found there were hot showers at Coulter Village, so we went and bought ourselves a pair for $3.00 a piece. Absolutely delicious!
Drove the loop by Jenny Lake and verified the location of the boat launch for our hike the next day. The Tetons were very different from Yellowstone, and yet the parks are only a short distance apart. Yellowstone seemed to be about geothermals and animals, and Tetons was about ranches, mountain views, and alpine hikes. A pretty great round-up of experiences and opportunities!
Joy wanted to buy me a nice dinner at the Jackson Lake Lodge that night, but they were booked up. We opted for beers, greasy bar food, and the blues, while watching the sun sink behind the Tetons. I wouldn't have wanted it any other way. There were no clouds in the sky, so no pink and purple light show, but it was quite stunning anyway.
The next morning dawned cold with everything covered in a layer of frost, including our shoes, which were laid out on the welcome mats on either side of the camper. It had got down to 25°F again. Autumn in the Rockies seemed to mean summer days and winter nights. Joy made sandwiches for our lunches, while I mixed up another batch of bread and set it to rise all day.
Drove to Jenny Lake and took the boat trip across to the trailhead. Hiked nine miles round trip through some of the most beautiful alpine wilderness I had ever seen. First stop was Hidden Falls, then on to Inspiration Point. We lost most of the crowd there, because that was the steepest part of the hike. We ran into quite a few hikers as we headed out on the Cascade Canyon Trail, but coming back we ran into very few, so we had the trail mostly to ourselves. Luckily we were past the Labor Day hump, or we may not have had the same level of solitude. We stopped to take pictures, and scanned the rocky ledges for mountain goats and sheep (nope). It was a perfect day for a hike, not too hot, the sun glinting off the cascading stream, bees lazily buzzing about, and the largest grasshoppers I'd ever seen, sunning themselves on the trail. We pretended to yodel, but felt silly doing that in the mountain stillness.
We lost our solitude once we got back to Inspiration Point and Hidden Falls. Since it was the end of the day, lots of folks were waiting for a boat ride back. We only had to watch one boat leave without us, although on the next boat they packed twice as many people as life preservers: our boat, the refugee boat. Luckily we didn't sink, as the water was pretty darn cold.
Picked up firewood and ice. That night would be our last night camping together, so we had a nice meal planned. Joy built the fire, while I started the coals and heated water for dishes later. Joy skewered the chicken she had been marinating all day, along with some Portobello mushrooms. (Sorry, no marinade recipe: we made it up from whatever we could find in my spice box along with lemon juice, soy sauce, and balsamic vinegar.) I got the Roasted-Rosemary-Rye bread baking in the Dutch oven, and we cooked the kabobs slowly, smoking them with some mesquite wood added to the coals.
Click here to go to 1999 Teardrop Adventure Page 8.
The story is 16 short pages total. You can jump to other sections of the story here:
1 - Departure
And here are some recipes: