Friday, April 15, 2016

Me & My Willy's Jeep, Tecopa Hot Springs, Spanish Trail

Tecopa, CA. No engine, no crankshaft, but hey, the wooden truckbed's intact. You can look under mah hood.

The U-We Wash steamie, or laundromat at Tecopa Hot Springs. As far as I can tell, Tecopa, named after a Paiute chief, (formerly Brownsville), an outpost of the Tonopah and Tidewater Railroad, was never that big to warrant so many washing machines. Must be where old washing machines go to die, all that free hot running water. That's a freak spring snowstorm moving in, BTW.

Sadly, since the last time we were at the hot springs (see post below), vandals stomped their names on the fragile calcite dunes of the archaic lake bed of Tecopa (far right). It will take a lifetime to obliterate that graffiti.

See my story from last year's dip in TECOPA HOT SPRINGS  or what's left of the bitter Amargosa River (once called Saleratus Creek); Grimshaw Lake is but a puddle remnant of the once vast Pleistocene Lake Tecopa.
"The spring is on the left of the road, and flows into Saleratus Creek. Animals must not be allowed to drink the Saleratus water. —The Prairie Traveler

Old Spanish Trail: Descending from Emigrant Pass to Pahrump Valley. I think that's a spur of the Nopah Range. Not sure. It could be an isolate, Kingston Peak, to the south. Pah means water in Paiute. So all those Pah- placenames signify water: Tonopah, Tecopa, Pahrump, Nopah. In fact, the Spring Mountains are loaded with water. There are trilobite fossils embedded in the shale rocks at Emigrant Pass.

 Extra large weather greeted us as we descended into Pahrump Valley, Nevada, outracing the storm. Spring snow in the desert was the last thing we were expecting. Ever the fandancers, the isolated sky islands of the Spring Mountains and Nevada's highest mountain, Mt Charleston were slipping into fetching snowy lace négligées—only we couldn't see them.

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