With this being now a dying planet, by the popular fiction genre, I had to see my usual reading of the late peak for the fall colors. When I started keeping track, four decades ago, the peak might come as early as late September. It began to be later and later, and now, it occurs well past the Fall Equinox. The science says that this is due to global warming, or geographically, climate change. We had locally one of the coolest summers ever on record. This was said to be predicted by the computer models. Still, most people remain skeptical. I go about driving my car and using electricity, both causing greenhouse gas emissions. In my mind, I absolve myself of any guilt, as I had always owned and driven a fuel efficient vehicle, and rode a bicycle to school and work. Practicing good conservation, but keeping updated, I have generally bought green technology, and also supported Earth causes.

Up early at about 2 a.m., Tuesday, I had charged up my batteries. I had made reservations for a night stay to make better use of the drive. I got to packing and checked the news. Leaving home in the dark, I fueled up, and motored eastbound on U.S. 50.

I had to check out the casino in the foothills, for another dining op. I had the best and biggest croissant breakfast sandwich that I have ever had. I snapped a photo of the entry art, and zoomed eastward to the Mormon-Emigrant Road. Stopping at the Jenkinson Lake TH parking by the dam, I sauntered up the trail with a new fence. Game to see the red dogwood, I started snapping photos in the dawn light. Most leaves had not changed yet, a bad sign for the colors. I quickly headed back to my car, and motored southeast, into the sun.

Rocks were on the highway. I heard shots from hunters, and then was to Highway 88. I read from Net reports that it was as good as it gets, so wished to confirm. Past Silver Lake, the colors began to appear. Fearful of causing any inconvenience to other motorists, I refrained from many stops. I did capture some views of aspen, and then came to a PCT trailhead. Clouds floated over Round Top, so I wished for photos. I shot some movie clips, as the clouds moved fast. Wished that I had time lapse photography capability enabled.

I motored further east, and came to good color, passing through Hope Valley. Nice reds! A few other leaf peepers were about this early, and then I came to the rustic lodge, famous for its fall color ops, as well as cross country skiing ops in the winter. I had a can of soda, and shot some photos and movie clips. Some women asked about a trail in the area.

There was some road construction going north on CA 89 over Luther Pass, and I saw new blacktop being laid. My goal was now Taylor Creek Visitor Center. I was way ahead of time, so changed my mind about lodging a night.

Taking my stroll on the Rainbow Trail, I captured many photos of the colors and spawning Kokanee salmon. Magnificent! I had spoken with the rangers and got some information, then shortly left to cancel my room reservation in person.

Headed home on U.S. 50, I stopped at the Pyramid Creek trailhead parking lot. I was lucky to have my park pass, good for the two fee areas that I used. Seeking to get some last few photos and light hiking, I met a couple other hikers, and then came back to my car.

Feeling better about going home, I stopped at a burger joint that I was curious about, and then was back to my place.

Driving then some 244 miles, I hiked about 2 miles total with slight elevation gain. I captured about 500 images and movie clips. Spending $25 for a fill-up of gas, I parted with about $19 for food and drink. I do tip well, getting excellent and good, friendly, service.

This may be it for awhile, and I will be conserving, and being frugal. I plan to keep expenses down, and enjoy on the cheap, as best as I can. When the holidays arrive, I will be looking at another winter road trip, and to celebrate my good luck for this year, thankful that I had two great road trips, with no highly unfortunate events occurring. Having little luck with any partner, I like getting up as I please, and doing what I want to do. I can eat when I'm hungry, and see what I wish to see. No complaints from anyone!