Ruby Meets the Tetons
Introducing…. Ruby: a 2004 Subaru Forester! After the Rover went out with such a spectacular bang, a big part of me wanted to keep living the drive-to-the-end-of-any-road dream and get another beast, but I elected to keep moving forward onto the more practical dream of driving something more reliable and fuel efficient. After visiting every used car lot in Bozeman looking for a manual that could tow, I found Ruby. I bought her on a Monday and hit the road on Tuesday with no better plan than to ‘drive south ’til it stops raining’. After a 2-week, 3,500 mile loop through Wyoming, Idaho, Nevada, California and Oregon, across deserts and mountains to the Pacific Ocean, Ruby’s part of the family.
Perfect rainy day activity in Idaho. I wanted to get to know Ruby before hitching her up to the trailer so we picked up a roof rack big enough to hold our skis and hit the road the old-fashioned way.
Taking Ruby to the Moon
Crossing paths with a friendly rattler…he barely rattled at us!
Test drive on a playa lake in Nevada
Ruby meets her first UFO on the Extraterrestrial Highway in Nevada
Crushed Car Canvas
Mono Lake D.O.G. Driving up California’s route 89, one of my all-time favorite roads!
Ruby with Lassen Peak. A new national park for me! My list of never-seen national parks grows ever shorter…
Heading up Lassen
On the summit of Lassen… 100 years to the day after its last eruption in 1915! Happy Anniversary, dear volcano…
Mount Shasta from Black Butte
Hauling my ski gear up to the snow line on Mount Shasta. We skied from around 8,000 feet up to 10,000 feet. This summit is definitely at the top of the list for next spring!
Dreamski down Shasta
Oregon Coast Spring
Ruby Meets Boat
Pedal-kayaking in Coos Bay, Oregon
Dawn on Mount Hood. We woke up at 1am, were on the mountain by 2, on the summit at 7, down by 10.
In the Shadow of the Volcano
Skiing Hood’s Crater. We skied up to the Hogsback and down from here the day before we summited.
Climbing up the steep final pitch up the crater wall to the summit ridge
To the Summit!
Helens, Rainier and Adams from the top of Hood. Check 3 out of 4!
Getting a hitch put on Ruby for the teardrop is near the top of my to do list, but after spending last summer rolling around the West from one mountain range to the next, my goal for this summer was to find a place to really get to know on foot. What more could a hiker ask for than to land in Big Sky country?!
Pointing out my home mountain from the summit of Woodward Mountain. Summer project: hike from here to there!
Mary Caperton Morton is a freelance science and travel writer with degrees in biology and geology and a master’s in science writing. A regular contributor to EARTH magazine, where her favorite beat is the Travels in Geology column, she has also written for the anthologies Best Women's Travel Writing 2010 and Best Travel Writing 2011. Mary is currently based in western Colorado. When she’s not at the computer she can usually be found outside -- hiking, skiing, climbing mountains and taking photographs. Visit her website at www.marycapertonmorton.com.
So nice to hear from you Mary! Looks like you’ve introduced Ruby to the road right well!
Congratulations re Ruby! She looks like a good car for you.
Finally, I was anxiously awaiting your current adventures. Thanks for the update. It is always thrilling to get to my inbox and find a post on your adventures that I live vicariously through.
Let us know how she does with the teardrop. I have been thinking about swapping my Subaru legacy for a Forester, to get the extra ground clearance. Happy Trails!
I had a Subaru Impreza before I got the Rover that towed the teardrop to Alaska and back with no problems. The trailer weighs around 800 pounds, full loaded, well under the 2,000-pound towing limit of a Subaru.
Wonderful post and photos. Looking forward to reading more about your travels. I’m British with a love of the American west. A month or so in Wyoming each year isn’t enough. . . I wish it could be more! Travelled this year in Colorado, Utah, Arizona and (but only just) New Mexico. Again, too short. Your lunarscape – was that at Craters of the Moon? I was fortunate enough to visit there last year, as part of a really interesting road trip (posted on that one).
Wow… you certainly “broke out” for a major road trip! Good that you posted again…
I’ve been waiting and looking forward to your update adventures Mary. Ruby looks a good sturdy car and my favourite colour.
Wow! What a journey and wonderful pictures! Lucky you! 🙂
Glad to see you back on the road. You passed within ‘a few western miles’ – (always a tad longer than eastern miles) of me. Beautiful post.
A Subaru! You won’t be disappointed with Ruby. My Impreza is well over 400,000 miles with the original engine and transmission. Old Seabisquit keeps on going!
Blueberry season is coming up here on our farm. A few are just showing signs of ripening. Stop in, and I’ll send you off with a bucket of berries again.
Always glad to know you are out there, being the maverick you are.
What a Beauty Ruby is! I just bought my forever car, 2015 Subaru Outback! “Butterfly” White and now decorated with beautiful butterfly’s, can’t loose it now! Plenty of room for road trips and dogs and company. Subaru is one solid car. Can’t wait to hear about your adventures in Ruby’s care! OH enjoy Big Sky country!. Check out the views in the Bitteroot Valley, if your passing through look for a Big Female Bald eagle and her Raven companion! When I was there they hung out by the rail road track between Lolo and Florence!
Welcome back, Mary. Were you tenting it, or sleeping in the back of the Forester?
We just sold our “Ruby” exact same model and color. She lives right next door to us so we se her everyday. Glad you’re back to doing what you love.
Looks like fun! I’m looking forward to more updates from my adopted state. Big Sky summers are the best.
Awesome, some of my favorite things to see all in one trip 🙂
I had missed the post on the Rover wreck. So glad you and the boys are okay. And really happy to see you have found Ruby. I have a 2003 Forester and love it. Clifford and I just returned from a 2 1/2 month road trip with Pony and Blazer, and we were in some of the same area that you mention: Idaho, Oregon, California (camped at Pit River not far from Lassen), and back to northern Idaho via Montana. It was great. We have a couple 3 week trips planned for the summer (Washington and Montana). Then a longer trip to New Mexico for the winter. I’ll be watching for Ruby and the teardrop as we travel so I can wave to you. Happy travels to you, Carol
So good to read you again! May Ruby take good care of you and your travel companions and the Teardrop — safe and happy travels always!
So happy to see you back 🙂 what a great trip – Lassen & Mono Lake & Oregon Coast are all so special to me!
Great to see you’re back and with such a spectacular gallery of photos. The crushed car canvas is spectacular. Should be hanging in MOMA. Best wishes 🙂
Where is u blonde kyotay?
I sure do miss hearing of your travels. Hope you and the pups are well.
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