It's the beginning days of our vanlife adventure and everything is so exciting. We found ourselves parked at a park in Republic, Wa debating where we should spend the night and we had recalled seeing a video by another YouTuber about a surface mine up on Bodie Mountain. Charlie dialed it into the GPS and we were off on another unplanned adventure.
Not knowing where you will be and what you will be experiencing from one day to the next definitely adds a thrill to your days on the road. Gravel crunched beneath the tires of our minivan, Opal, as the grade steeped on the old mountain road we were following. She even got a few unexpected "belly rubs", as Charlie calls them when he underestimates her clearance. The scraping sound makes me cringe, but I'm assured Opal is a tank and will take us safely wherever we must go.
It was quite the journey, but setting eyes on the Silver Bell mine instantly put my mind at ease and the strange instinct to rockhound took over. We saw a sea of rough stone and with a closer look we realized that crystals were everywhere around us. We hounded into the night.
Watch full video here: