Sunday, April 24, 2016

Week Two at Silent Valley

Here is a better picture of the fire truck Silent Valley has to protect us in the event it would be needed.

It's been a beautiful week here, and we are enjoying it to the fullest, as you can see.  Millie tolerates her sun glasses, but I don't think Willie would stand for them!  She totally loves being outdoors.  Poor Willie thinks he must be on guard duty, and never really relaxes outside.
I mentioned birds here, but I forgot to tell you that we also see many gray squirrels and bunnies here too. The squirrels are everywhere, and Millie thinks she can catch one.  Yesterday she even tried to catch a robin.........who just looked at her and then flew up into a tree.  We have seen some woodpeckers, but never when I had my camera ready, alas.  I will keep trying to get a picture of one or more.   

In my last post, I wrote about the drive up this mountain to get here.  You drive from the level on I-10, eight miles up on Highway 243.  It would be another 16 miles up to get to the lovely little town of Idyllwild, and I believe the elevation up there is probably over 7000 feet above sea level.  We've gone up there by car a few times, and it is nice, but much cooler than here.  There is a Thousand Trails RV Park up there, BUT there aren't a lot of sites that look level enough for an RV as big as ours.  We've never camped there, but Sylvia & Steve used to go there occasionally, with their 27 foot travel trailer.  Getting back to the drive to get here, you ONLY go up to an elevation of about 4100 feet, then drive down into Silent Valley, on Poppet Flats Rd one mile, to an elevation of about 3500 feet.  If you don't have an over-powering fear of heights, it is a beautiful, and scenic trip, so we took some pictures the other day to include here.

 We took this one on Wednesday, before coming back up, because you can see that there is still snow on some of the mountain tops around this area.
 This was taken on the way down the hill on Friday, looking out over the area.
 We thought this gives a good view , with the town of Banning waaaaaaay down below.
 This shows how green it is up here in the spring time.  Sadly, many years brush fires will destroy much of the hillsides around the area, but it grows back, thanks be to God.  This also shows how the road winds back on itself as you go down the hill.

Here is a pass through some of the rocks along the roadway.  They must have used many tons of dynamite to clear away the rocks to make this road!

Speaking of rocks, this road does have areas noted as rock slide areas!  Sure hope that never happens, but some large rocks really look like they are just barely balancing there.  We would not want to be on that road if an earthquake happens!

Then finally you make it down to the town, and level roads again.  The first time we went up there, I swore "never, ever again".  But I'm so glad we didn't listen to me.  This area is soooo very worth the drive, and the drive has become more of a pleasure than a danger.  Highway 243 is also called the Idyllwild-Banning Scenic Byway, and it truly is a beautiful drive.  Wild flowers bloom in many areas too.  One should have good tires and brakes, and if there is snow, I believe chains are required on the road, but we just don't come up here when that is the case.

Since it is Sunday, I guess I feel like I want to give some praise today.  Many of you have heard me say I wouldn't have the courage to get out of bed in the morning if I didn't know that God, our heavenly Father is watching over and protecting me.  We can never forget for one minute the many blessings he has given us.  The greatest gift, of course was his Son Jesus Christ who died to save us from our sins.  He promised us this in John 3:16.  After promising us everlasting life, He also gave us a wonderful world to enjoy each day that we are here.  Jesus taught us to love and to forgive others, in the Lord's prayer.  Sometimes we may feel like we can't forgive someone, even maybe ourselves for something that we, or they have done.  BUT if God can, and does forgive us for our sins, who are we to think we should judge ourselves, or others more harshly than God does?  That's all I have to say for now, but I hope it will provoke some thoughtful consideration if there is anyone you need to forgive today. 

Life is short, so make the very most of it.  Be happy, be healthy and know that you are wealthy because you have so much to be grateful for.   Keep the rubber side down and enjoy America!!!!!


  1. Glad to hear you continue to enjoy yourselves with all the wildflowers, birds and critters. And what a good thing that the drive up the mountain is second-nature to you now so you can just enjoy the scenic drive. Enjoy what's left of your stay!

    "This is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad!"

  2. Amen! I'm not so sure I would call it second-nature. It can still be scary, and we will never drive up or down the hill after dark unless it is an absolute emergency! But we do love the beautiful view. Be well.
    Love, Sue & Jim & the furry kids! :o)