Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Baker, California

We left Las Vegas early Monday morning because the Rio Mesa H.S. Fall Sports Awards night would be held that evening at 7:00 p.m. and because the morning news predicted that an intense snow storm would at any moment be attacking Interstate 15, our only road back towards Los Angeles.

It DOES Snow in the Las Vegas Valley!

If you have ever driven on Interstate 15 from Victorville to Las Vegas, then you are familiar with the three "Highway Stations" on your FM radio dial.  They all three broadcast the exact same songs and information at the same time with a bent towards country music and car wrecks.

This morning they were passionate about road and school closures due to the inclement weather.

The "World Famous" Mad Greek

Driving along I-15, you are bombarded with roadside ads for the Mad Greek's like this one.  The "Highway Stations" reported that the road immediately behind us from Primm, Nevada to Baker, California had just been closed due to heavy snows.  They also reported that the Cajon Pass ahead of us between Victorville and San Bernardino was also closed.  What are going to do...

Why eat of course!

Once again Guy Fieri comes through with another great recommendation, none other than the Mad Greek!  This is only the fourth establishment listed at his website that I have frequented with the Four Kegs in Las Vegas, Baby Blues BBQ in Venice California and Krazy Jim's Blimpy Burgers in Ann arbor, Michigan being the others.  I highly recommend all of these and I am thinking that visiting everyone in the southern California area before flying to Catania next month would be a worthy quest! 

As you can see by the sign post just outside the Mad Greek's entryway, this culinary oasis is centrally located!
EUREKA, We Have Found It!

The Steak Breakfast Burrito hit the spot...
so did the decor.

The plan was to take about an hour to eat and gas up Laurie's red Chrysler PT Cruiser that you see in the picture of the outside of the Mad Greek's above.  Hopefully as the sun got a little higher in the sky and warmed things up, it would allow the road crews on the upcoming Cajon Pass a chance to clear the snow and re-open the I-15.


Are you kidding? Baker (  ) is both "The Gate Way to Death Valley" AND "The Entrance to the Mojave National Preserve"!  There are just tons of things to do in Baker to while away the hours.

Exhibit "A"...
Baker's Alien Fresh Jerky Store!

With its own Security Force in the parking lot for the customer's peace of mind!

O.K., this guy was a little creepy once you stepped inside but the BBQ Jerky was really good!

So that's it for Baker, the Mad Greek's and the Alien Fresh Jerky store?  Not on your life!

Exhibit "B"...
The World's Tallest Thermometer!

Baker's main claim to fame is its thermometer which was regitering a balmy 49 degrees Fahrenheit today, that's 9 degrees Celsius for my Sicilian readers.

At the top of this thermometer it can register into the 130's F. = 55 Celsius!  Why do you think they call it Death Valley?

The Zzyzx Road exit on the I-15.

If allowed, how many points would this off-ramp score you in a game of Scrabble?

The "Highway Stations" alerted us that the Cajon Pass was now re-opened with California Highway Patrolmen escorting groups through the Pass at low speeds for our own safety.  We were to expect delays of at least one hour through the Pass, but at least we were moving again.

The Cajon Pass

It was as treacherous as advertised but we got through.  Hearing Paul Harvey's voice on the radio during this stretch of our journey was also of great comfort.  He is getting older and his voice is not as strong as it once was but his show when you hear it still means you are on vacation.

"Paul Harvey... GOOD DAY!"

This Rainbow seen through a new housing development under construction near our home, led us to Camarillo

So the trip home took us about eight hours but we made it with plenty of time to spare for Sports Awards night.

No comments: