Wash your spirit clean: Eastern Sierra Anniversary Trip Day 1

As you've glimpsed, for our anniversary we headed down to a tiny fisherman cabin at June Lake in the mountain range that John Muir called the "Range of Light." John Muir spent ten years living the wild life in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. "Keep close to nature's heart," he wrote..."And break clear away, once in a while, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean." I feel blessed to call this area home, to live in the foothills of these glorious majestic peaks and ridges and valleys and to be able to come here and wash my spirit clean and feel that sensation vividly.

On the day we started out, it was cloudy and rainy in Placerville. I was prepared with layers, a wool coat, and a plan to hit up some hot springs. But guess what? The day turned out glorious. Driving up Luther Pass near South Lake Tahoe, heading across to the 395 that travels the east side of the Sierras, these are the kinds of views we were seeing regularly:

All the rivers and waterfalls are overflowing this year. Where usually there are tiny fresh creeks, there are now raging waters. This rushing waterway was flowing merrily through Markleeville...

Where I couldn't resist the allure of this sign, and indeed found a remarkable tie dye collection, old books and the teensiest Gunne skirt ever inside:

Heading over Monitor Pass, we always stop at the top and take pictures of the magical valley spread below us.

Stretch our legs, jump for joy, check out the big wild sunflowers, and onward toward Bridgeport...

In Bridgeport it's become customary to stop at the festive little roadside diner called Jolly Cone for some greasy road trip food.

We went all out, ordering both fries and onion rings, yummmm but gross-feeling later.

I love Bridgeport. I have an undying love for its rough edged cowboy fisherman culture. For Rhino's the bar there where I used to spend some wild July nights for the Harley Run. I love the old hotel that seems haunted and serves up manly foods like steak and potatoes; I love the courthouse and the little church and the huge old fashioned parades and big rusty trucks.

I love the hot springs too, but unfortunately they were overrun by a big rowdy group of San Diego kids on their way up to the Mountain Music Festival. Very friendly, the girls had swirly tattoos and loved my outfit which made me smile, but still it was a bit crowded for our tastes. We met a friendly local dog and headed down in search of a more secluded spring.

And here's what my innovative hub decided to try!
It was deep! A weird, tiny, round little hot spring all by its lonesome. He didn't touch the bottom til he was up to his shoulders. He invited me in, I politely declined...but loved the view and the walk and the pup.

A little while later and we arrived at our cabin!

We had the cutest little rustic kitchen...

And even got to pick our own beds, haha! Twin beds on an annivesary trip! Here is Darin saying, I get this one, you sleep over there...
haha! it's actually really hard to sleep separately when you're not used to it, something i never think about, so on the second night we pushed the beds together.

What a sweet cheery place this was, unpretentious and homey. Just the way we like them!

this was right across from our cabin, a lovely little grove of aspens. "We all travel the Milky Way together, trees and men." JM

and here is the cutest friend who greeted us at dusk! a young black bear, roaming and loping mildly around the premises seeking foodstuffs. Handsome devil huh?! And very shy. Sorry for the poor quality, Darin didn't have time to focus but he did get some great video footage!
Darin loves nature footage. I think that's probably obvious. Here he filming Grant Lake on a little sunset drive.
I had shed layers by the day's end. It was a warm evening and I gathered sage. The smell fills my heart and skin with gratitude and joy.

"When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe." John Muir.
Lake swimming, alpine hiking and tufa towers coming up...
Thanks for coming along!


Cat said…
what a beautiful day!
and i know the feeling of sleeping seperate when not used to. we usually end up sleeping in one of the beds leaving the other one untouched. have a great day!
i really enjoy your blog a lot.
Amanda said…
Sounds like a beautiful trip!
Tina Dawn said…
I love all the area you have shown us in your great photos, and I am sure I would love the cabin. Great post. Love T
Celynne said…
Hahaha, Darin in that tiny hotspring! Priceless! I'd have been worried about something in the water nibbling at my toes though hah.

I always have a hard time sleeping alone when I come back from visiting my boyfriend. I spend 3-4 nights shifting around in my sleep trying to find him and waking up way over on the other side of my double bed hah.

Aw, little bear <3 My parents saw a bear not long ago too, gotta love those honey lovers.
ashley said…
Even just looking through these photos soothes my soul. I swear I even smelled the sage and that crisp mountainous air!

That cottage is adorable- and the seperate sleeping is so weird! At Eric's grandmothers, when I first started visiting her with him, we had to sleep first on seperate stories of the house, but then we got to share the "twin room", which had two single sleeper cots. We ended up pushing them together too, but there was still no room for cuddlin'! So awful to not be able to do so on an anniversary trip! I hope that wasn't the case!

Ohhh those meadow photos. My heart! I think this is something I want to do for our upcoming anniversary, too. Looks so relaxing! Except for that hotsprings...yikes!
Amy Beatty said…
mmm mmm mmm sage and bears - little cozy cabins and quilts!! What a beautiful full life. I love darin in that hole!! I think I would have to pass also - but it sure is great fun to see him in it :)
anne said…
what a fun trip! great photos too. that hole darin is in is crazy! i would have been way too scaredto get in it. he's a brave man!
so fun!!!! i want a road trip.
Teeny said…
Hey girl, I've been away from the internet the last few days on account of nursing my sick babes. And look what i missed! Your outfit is very very rad, if i saw you i would think "oh my god who is that cool girl, i want to know her!" and I'm trying to take all of your links on mono lake but my silly net connection is not working to my satisfaction!!! i sincerely hope it's in California cos we are planning our trip now for realses, and your blog has so much inspiration for me!! if that were my hubs in the hotpool i would be standing over him wringing my hands worried he would get sucked under or something. my ability to be intrepid can sometimes be outsmarted by silly worries. Happy anniversary lovely.
Milla said…
Oh sweet lovers! This trip has left me totally breathless, you guys are such sweet folk, so loving, so artistic, so tuned into the world. Your stories and references always leave me yarning for more and the images are amazing. I also love that Darin wore his McKerritcher-tee shirt, spreading park love from the coast to the hills;) and your hat! Man that hat rocks in all kinds of ways! Thanks for sharing lovely!

Popular posts from this blog

Twin Lakes Tradition

pretty baby

Anniversary Paradise - part 1