Posts Tagged ‘road trip’

By the time many of you read this, I’ll be in my van on the road to Wyoming.  So it’s the start of a three-week blogging break for me.  Our internet connection at 7,000′ is quite slow, which is fine, as I’ll be spending my time riding, reading, hiking, and relaxing.  My parents will also be visiting for about a week, although unfortunately, my husband can’t make it. But I imagine I’ll be popping in to Instagram from time to time.  In the meantime, have a wonderful time wherever you are and whatever you’re doing.  When I get back, I’ll have lots of information and photos for posts, although I haven’t finished with France yet.  Isn’t travel grand?  Blessings to all of you and I’ll be back soon.

Headed toward this view…

© janet m. webb

 

Happy Wednesday, the last Wednesday, if you can believe it, of July.  Where’s the summer gone?  But no matter how fast it goes by, each Wednesday brings a new Photo Challenge theme and today that’s “Satisfaction.” I guess that means we can get some satisfaction, right?  🙂

I love road trips, nature, and beauty, so a combination of all three gives me a great deal of satisfaction.  This South Dakota sunset was so beautiful that I pulled off the highway and took some photos, not content so simply see it in my rearview mirror!

11:35 am EST, Wednesday, July 26…Can anyone else see comments or pingbacks from the Photo Challenge?  I tried two browsers and I’m not seeing anyone’s entries, including my own.

© janet m. webb

 

The morning drive

Posted: September 27, 2016 in Quotes, Travel
Tags: , , ,

I love leaving for a trip very early in the morning, when it’s cool, quiet, no longer quite dark, and most people are (hopefully) still in bed.

© janet m. webb 2016

All glory comes from daring to begin.
~Eugene F. Ware

© janet m. webb 2016

The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.
~Marcel Proust

Leaving behind the falls, we wind down the canyon to the flat land, heading towards Cody, gateway to Yellowstone.  Over-grazing in many places has left sagebrush as the main vegetation and it takes many acres for one cow to graze.  The top ten cash crops in Wyoming are hay, sugar beets, barley, wheat, corn for grain, dry beans, oats, marijuana and potatoes.   The country becomes much more open but in the distance, we can see the mountains that are indicators of Yellowstone.

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The alarm goes off at 4:15 am and I fumble in the dark to turn off the unfamiliar clock. I’m forced to turn on the light eventually but Bill will have to get up soon, too.  After getting dressed, I load the cooler with lunch fixings and snacks, grateful for the list I wrote the day before when I wasn’t sleepy.  Then it’s time to wake the rest of our group and when our older daughter and her boyfriend arrive, we load ourselves into the van (most of us wrapped in blankets) and we’re off on a one-day whirlwind trip to Yellowstone National Park, America’s first national park and a unique place.

It will take us about 3 1/2 hours just to get to the park’s entrance, not because of simple distance but because that distance has many literal ups and downs and the first part of our trip is on an unimproved road.  For “unimproved road”, read “a road that you’re lucky to go 30 mph on.”  The washboard surface can slow you to about 5 mph and the effect of hydroplaning without the water.  Luckily, the road is relatively smooth this year and we can make good time.

We leave in the dark.

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Our first stop after leaving in the morning is the Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota.  Every year, the outside is decorated with corn, grasses and other plants.  Begun in 1892, the Corn Palace is somewhere you might think will be, if you’ll excuse the expression, corny, but as my best friend found out several years ago, it’s really interesting.

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Hay’s an important crop, so hay and grass for grazing are much of what we see as we drive through South Dakota.  Earlier in the year, we would have seen sunflowers, but I only spot one field of them.  

Since it’s Bike Rally week in Sturgis, there are literally hundreds of bikers on the road.  Motels and hotels are filled as far as five or six hours away.  Bikers who look like they were young during the 60’s and older couples whose motorcycles sport sidecars all make the trek from all over the country.  It’s always the first week of August and some wild and crazy things go on.

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At long last it’s time for our annual vacation trek to the Bighorn Mountains of Wyoming!   It’s a two-day drive, so we start relatively early, once the van’s packed. The coolers are filled with all sorts of goodies, both to consume during the trip and to “import”. Our menu today consists of grapes, cherries, corn chips and bierocks. Bierocks are a type of pocket sandwich shaped like a turnover. I make the slightly sweet dough in the bread machine, roll it into circles and fill with a combination of ground beef, onion, cabbage and a bit of cheddar cheese. After a short rise, they’re baked.  Besides being delicious, they’re also perfect because the filling doesn’t fall out while you’re eating them. 🙂

After leaving Illinois, we head into Wisconsin  into relatively flat farmland.  As we go further, it becomes more hill, wooded, and wild-looking. We make one stop each year in Mauston, a small town that’s home to an amazing cheesemaker, Sid Cook (http://www.carrvalleycheese.com/).  I read about Sid and Carr Valley in the book, Cheesemonger. The author mentioned Carr Valley so often that I looked to see where it was located and realized we drove by the exit every year. Now we make a regular stop there. Deciding which cheeses to get, though, is difficult as there are so many choices and every one we’ve ever tried has been good. (Photos of cheeses at a later date when they’re not being kept in the cooler.)

If you’re from Wisconsin or Quebec, you know about cheese curds, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cheese_curd. Cheese curds are very, very fresh cheese, cut into curds. Ideally, they’re eaten the day they’re make or within several days and besides being tasty, they squeak. 🙂 Needless to say, we buy a bag. (more…)