Continuing on to My Willow Creek Camp Site and Muskrats

Friday June 19, 2015 Willow Creek Camp about a mile below the reservoir, Nevada

Jarbidge trip

This morning I broke camp and was on the road,  80 east, around eight. A tooth has been bothering me just as I started this trip. Well, longer than that off and on, but I could never figure out which one it was until now.  So, anyway, another blogger I read, can’t remember which,  said whole cloves helped relieve pain and seem to work for them, so I thought I’d give it a try, which meant stopping at Lovelock to get some, so I did. I saw a McDonalds there so used the internet and posted yesterday’s blog.


Then I headed for Winnemucca to Wally’s and picked up some radiator fluid to replace all the water I added the other day.

It’s time to gas up to the top as I’m headed out to the boonies from here, so I did that and got back on 80 east for about twenty miles to a place called Golconda. Here’s where I leave the hustle and bustle of civilization. I take the road north that heads to a little place called Midas. It’s a dirt road well maintained as the big mines out here use it a lot. Some of it can get a little rough at times, but they do work on it a lot. Here I’m lucky enough to be the first one to drive on the just graded road. That’s the grader up ahead going the same way I am. It didn’t last long, but most of the road was in pretty good shape for traveling  55. I think the  speed limit is 45, but I notice the miners don’t go that slow. :O)

Very freshly graded road

Here’s the road with the grader up ahead getting fairly close to the little town of Midas which I didn’t go to, just past it.grader


You have to keep on your toes in a couple spots on this road as when a road turns off to one of the mines, it looks like it’s the main road, but it’s not, just goes to the mines which I don’t think are open to the public. And even though I’ve been down these roads a few times before, I still have to stop and check my map or gps at times.

Willow Creek Camp

I was headed to my Willow creek camp which is about two and a half miles below the Willow creek reservoir, There’s a road to the left coming down from the dam direction, just after the creek leaves the road. I drive down it to a spot that overlooks the creek, only a short distance from the main road.

The road that goes to where I camp is a loop road. As I was driving along, I thought this was the other end of the loop that I’d not been on before, so I turned down it to see if it was and it was.creekroad


On the way down, I drove by a big line of ranch type trucks and trailers. It looked like the local ranch just finished marking calves and were all sitting up on a corral. The little three year-ish old boy sitting way up there with all the rest of them especially stood out as he was waving at me energetically. :O) As it turned out they had just turned all the cattle out and the cattle’s drinking spot was right by where I wanted to camp. Good thing I like cattle. They remind me of what it might be like to have dinosaurs grazing around you, like if you  had a bit of an imagination. :O)

Anyway, here’s my camp along the Willow creek, looking upstream. No trees, but you can’t have everything.This is what’s known as high desert


This was my view from my van looking down the creek.willowcreek


This was my view out my van side doors. I was looking down there when I saw something move heading down river towards me which disappeared below the bank in front of me.creekveiw


Here’s what I saw swimming towards me, where I was up on the bank in my van. It’s carrying a bunch of grass.musk


Could this be a muskrat

When it came into view again, the grass it had was gone and it crossed the creek and chopped another bunch of grass.muskrat


It took the bunch of grass back to some place below the bank in front of me.musk3


It gathered bunches of grasses several more times as I watched. I was now thinking it must have a den or something just below me where I can’t see. Sure looks like a muskrat to me. musk2


I think there’s a muskrat den

The muskrat finally finished gathering grass and disappeared where I think there is a den.

I take it easy most of the day, just settling down after all the freeway driving to get here. This was a wind down day. The day gets a little warm, but the strong breeze helps cool things down. Things really cool down nicely around dark.

Here are some of the cows coming down to water right beside my van.  They kicked up a lot of dust which the wind was blowing my way and they were doing a lot of mooing too. Hopefully they will settle down by nightfall.cowdust


Muskrat den

In the evening I was thinking I should walk down to the creek and check for that muskrat den. I looked where the water trails in the weeds in the creek came to shore and sure enough, I found what looks like an entrance. The hole in the water right in front of my foot looked well used.muskratden


This is a photo of my camp just before it got dark.sunset


Just as it was getting dark, I saw three little cotton tailed rabbits ramping across the creek. Then one of the muskrats came out and swam up the creek a little and appeared to come back. Shortly after, it headed back up the creek where another one joined it and they headed on up the creek. A fox yelped just on the other side of my van and took off. I think I surprised it.

Tomorrow, I’m not sure of yet. I’ll likely work my way up the road to the next camp site. I’m thinking of checking out a new place while working my way towards the Mountain city area.

That’s it for another day.

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