« Lake Tahoe 2009 - Day 4 | Main | Changes to the site »

Lake Tahoe 2009 - Day 5

August 2

Today is the trip back home. It was a really awesome trip. Like most vacations unfortunately, all good things must come to an end. Our flight out isn’t until the afternoon, so we decided to go take a run out to Virginia City. Anyone who’s a fan of old westerns, particularly Bonanza, will recognize the name of Virginia City. In the show, the Ponderosa Ranch was supposedly near the shore of Lake Tahoe, and Virginia City was the nearest town. It is also supposedly the “birthplace” of Mark Twain, the penname of one Samuel Clemens. Not that Clemens was born there, but where he first used the pseudonym.

With this history, I was anticipating a nice old town, with the traditional storefronts, some period costumes, and the general theme of the old west running through the town.

What I got was a tad different. As a matter of fact, it’s one of the reasons I didn’t take my camera along with me, so there’s no pics for this entry. The current Virginia City, does in fact have the old style façade and wooden sidewalk. They do have an “old west shootout” type of show, and there is a horse-drawn carriage that runs through the main strip. Unfortunately that’s about it. While there’s no McDonalds or other fast food or big commercial businesses, some of the stores…well…in my opinion, they didn’t really fit the desired ambience. There were a few bars, and restaurants including a decent one where we had brunch. Unfortunately I don’t remember which one it was. The restaurant was nicely themed down to the waitresses who were dressed in period style. And of course being Nevada, a few casinos.

However, the “leather goods” store where “everything was $20 or under” was a tad odd (all made in china, cheap leather, questionable build quality). The “military surplus” store, and a few others didn’t quite fit the “old west theme” either. Add in the fact that the main street is a regular blacktop street with streetside parking etc, and the theme kept getting fainter and fainter the more we looked about.

Since we got there “early” (10:30am), a lot of the stores were still closed, and there weren’t too many cars. As we walked about and took in the “sights” the town slowly woke up, and some of the stores began to open. One of the locals called it “Comstock time.” Which I guess means: “open your doors whenever you roll in and decide to open.”

By the time we were ready to leave, the tourists were pouring in (and filling up the street with cars, subtracting the theme even more), and the biker trains were rumbling through as well.

Ah well, a slightly disappointing end, but by no means did it ruin the overall trip.

Maybe I’ll toss in an old western on the DVD, or see if there’s a rerun of Bonanza on…

Post a comment

(To block spammers, any comments need to be approved by the site owner before your they will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)