Ever since riding up to Masonic with the crew two years ago (click here) I have wanted to explore the region north of the Bodie Hills along the East Fork of the Walker River and beyond.
I figured the wide gravel roads would be a perfect spot to "get acquainted" with my new cross bike and I'd get to see historical sites, big scenery, and, hopefully, some wildlife.
I parked along the East Fork of the Walker River eight or nine miles before the dirt turnoff figuring it would be nice to get a little spinning before and after the gravel grinding. In no time I found myself at "The Elbow" which would be last I would see of the river before it ventures into a narrow gorge.
Beyond The Elbow, the road climbs steeply for a short stretch and then descends into this broad valley with Mt. Grant in the distance.
To my surprise a little ranch quickly came to view. A check of the map confirmed it was Nine Mile Ranch (named because it is nine miles from Aurora).
Apparently Mark Twain stayed in this fine old brick house for a spell (reference).
Not long after Nine Mile Ranch I came to this junction and decided to head up into the hills for a little change of scenery.
I took the fork into Del Monte Canyon and rode up a few more miles on a pleasant road.
Heading back I noticed a patch of Cottonwoods and Willows just east of the above junction, so I decided to check it out. This is Fletcher Station established as a stage stop and way station in the late 1860s. Best of all there was a nice spring there to top off my water bottles and freshen up.
Heading back I saw this fine Pronghorn Antelope by the side of the road who seemed a bit wary and a bit curious.
Finally, the last stretch of gravel with the east side of the Sweetwater Mountains in the distance.
Good one. Gotta come back for more someday!