Road Trip 2010 Day 1: Lassen Volcanic National Park

by Kara on July 29, 2010

Lake Manzanita, photo copyright Kara Sjoblom-Bay

I’m sitting here next to Lake Manzanita in Lassen Volcanic National Park, typing this on my iPad. I’ve got my tiny portable chair to use as a workstation while Stephen stands and waits for the sun to descend enough for him to take a picture of the volcano with the lake in the foreground.

We left San Jose at around 10:30 this morning, and hit Mineral, CA at around 3:00 pm. It’s a pretty boring drive and I struggled to stay awake. We’re staying at the Mineral Lodge. It’s not fancy, but it should be fine. Tomorrow night, our plan is to sleep in our tent because the lodge is full that night. We have a camping spot reserved there, but we may try and get a camping spot within the park instead.

There is still a fair amount of snow on the ground in the park, which surprised me because it is quite warm (although I understand it gets very cold at night). Tomorrow I need to have Stephen take a picture of me frolicking in the snow in my t-shirt and shorts.

We ended up bringing a ton of food with us. Maybe not enough for the whole trip, but there are undoubtably grocery stores in Oregon. We also have a camp stove, so Stephen is going to be making my dinner a lot. He got all sorts of stuff we can cook in a little pot; lentils, rice, noodles, roast beef hash and even eggs. We had to have cheese sandwiches for lunch though, because our turkey slices were still frozen solid. And typically of me, I dumped half my sandwich onto the floor of the car when I flipped my plate while reaching for something.

We started our Manzanita hike around 6:00 pm. We had to walk from the other side of the lake to get to the right spot for taking pictures. It is just after 8:00 pm now, and the lit is definitely fading. Now I am much better about bringing things to keep me occupied while Stephen waits for the perfect shot. I need a more comfortable chair though. Not bigger – just more more comfortable. I usually try not to rush Stephen when he is taking pictures, because it might be the only opportunity he gets to photograph that spot. But boy it takes a long time.

On the hike back to our car, we saw five deer, including a fawn. After that, we had the long drive all the way back through the park to Mineral. We were really tired, but hungry. Stephen took the camp stove onto the patio in front of our motel room and made ramen soup with sausage and egg. It was delicious. But now I just want to go to sleep, so I am going to attempt to post this and then conk out.

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