I recently returned from my annual van camping trip through southern Nevada and Utah that I mentioned in my last post. This year my trip included a brief visit to the notorious Area 51 (or at least the outermost fringes that are open to civilians like you and me) that is located along SR 375, Nevada's official Extraterrestrial Highway.
Let me very quickly say that I neither saw, heard, experienced nor even intuited anything the least bit out of the ordinary, so........... nothing to see here folks, just move along........... unless you want to take a minute or two to look at a few photos, but again, nothing out of the ordinary.
I opted to spend the night next to the infamous Black Mailbox (discovering that I had just lost a hubcap on a long and very rough back road on my way out of Utah). Of course, as you can see, the Black Mailbox isn't black anymore, but that's another story.
Poor Steve Medlin, I'll bet no other rancher in the world has to put up with what he has to. Well, at least with that heavy duty padlock no one is rifling through his mail anymore.
I parked facing Bald Mountain knowing that Groom Lake and Area 51 proper lay just on the other side of it.
I was initially somewhat intimidated by the structures I could see atop Bald Mountain through my binoculars. Later, as I pedaled my bike down Mailbox Road in the direction of the Main Gate, I was imagining someone up there checking me out through far more powerful binoculars. But in all likelihood the structures just housed a bunch of high tech electronic equipment and, besides, anyone who did notice me would have quickly lost interest.
Unfortunately the night was overcast and I couldn't even see the stars much less some exotic, otherworldly aircraft. (Although it was kind of neat to see the night sky all lit up by Las Vegas, a little over 100 miles to the south.)
The next morning I was up bright and early and heading into the nearby town of Rachel, a wide spot in the road consisting of no more than a dozen structures, for a breakfast of scrambled eggs and grits at the iconic Little A'Le'Inn.
My brief adventure ended with the obligatory photo at the ET Highway sign outside Rachel and then I was off to far more prosaic Walker Lake further to the north.