We have a car, a drone, and a mission. Being in the mountains was working well for us. To help us guide us on our mission, I planned to use the same process I used back in the 1990s as part of my own recovery. That is, we would hike trails throughout the southern Oregon region, and when those trails were exhausted, we’d head north, or possibly east, and repeat the process — all summer long.
We left Reno in the morning, shortly after saying goodbye to Audrey, traveling north on 395 via the same path that had brought us to Peterson Mountain each day. As we drove past the Peterson Mountain it began to rain, making us happy we had decided to head north, and were not digging in the dirt today. After leaving the mountain behind we headed North to Susanville, CA — leaving Nevada in the rear view mirror.
Shortly after we had made our way through Susanville we saw a hitchhiker alongside the road. After a quick assessment of the 50+ year old fellow, we swerved to the side of the road — only to realize our entire backseat was full of equipment. With a little work, we were able to reorganize, load our hitchhiker and his backpack into our car, and continue our journey north.
Our hitchhiker didn’t talk much. He didn’t say where he was from, but told us he was heading to walk north on the Pacific Crest Trail. Hiking the trail annually was something he did to help him lose weight — go brother! He was looking to get a ride out of Weed, California, which would then get him to his desired Pacific Crest Trail crossing. We dropped him off in Shasta as we were looking to do some drone flying south of there at Castle Crags.
After eating at a small hippie burrito establishment in Shasta, it began to rain, and the wind picked up significantly, making it unsafe to fly our drone. We agreed to continue on our journey to Oregon, making our way through Weed and Yreka, California into Oregon. We then headed to Grants Pass, before we turned southwest into the Illinois Valley - our destination for the first part of our Drone Recovery mission.
While we have encountered some rain, snow, and wind on our trip, we couldn’t have picked a better time of year to kick this thing off. We’ve enjoyed mostly sunny days, and we have almost four months of sunshine ahead of us. I’m not sure how this will all play out, but things are in full motion, and there is no stopping this train now.