Now, boys and girls, today’s word is WINDY. That is why we got buffeted around as we drove across the plains. It is also why the landscape was dotted with large wind turbines. There were several very large wind farms all through the area. And it’s why we drove 8 hours yesterday and 6 today — moving through, fast as that famed tornado to OZ.
Time to get caught up with the blog, now that we have wifi. We are in Goodland, Kansas tonight, just shy of the Colorado border. One cool thing is we just crossed into Mountain Time Zone, so we gained another hour. Our trip from St. Louis was a long haul, but the weather was good, the road got better and straighter as we went West, so we kept on through Missouri, then through Kansas City and into Kansas. Missed the chance to have a nice steak dinner or KC barbeque, since we hit town around noon. Did see the Royals and Chiefs stadiums right from the interstate.
About 8 hours of driving and we reached Junction City and found a great campsite right on Milford Lake, the largest in Kansas. A Corps of Engineers campground, the campsite site was wonderful and we there were very few campers. Light rain as I started to grill dinner and again in the morning, but that let us wash off the windshield (see the bug splat report below).
We got an over-the-air TV station that had a news story you would only find here in Kansas. It seems that police were involved in a low speed chase of a combine. During the chase, the combine driver took out some traffic signs and smashed into a few cars with the front tines. Alcohol was suspected. Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up.
So this morning we left Junction City and drove only 6 hours to Goodland. The scenery is amazing and it is so rich in photo ops, but since I am driving, I can’t get the shots. Flat prairie and farmland as far as you can see, with horizon that is endless. Clouds cleared and we end with a beautiful sunny mid-70’s day. If you ever flew over this part of the country, you will remember seeing the circle crops. Well we passed many of them today, brown, green and in-between, with the center radius irrigation system the reason for the shape. Or would that be crop circles?
I have to say that my copilot Jackie has been great as scouting out our campgrounds from the road – those that we did not reserve ahead. Once we decide, she navigates right to the spot. She also checks the gas prices ahead, using the GasBuddy app. My gas gauge tells me how many miles we have left in the tank, so we plot the best prices possible. My secondary copilot Benji lets me know if the road is getting rough and if we are taking the curves and turns too fast. Passenger Merlin mostly sleeps under the sofa, coming out every once in a while, loudly requesting cabin service. Sorry, the captain has not turned off the seat belt lights.
Bug Splat Report
Yukk – we figured it was the worst in Missouri for bugs and butterflies on the windshield, but Kansas topped that easily. Didn’t count the ‘splats per minute’ but we washed the windshield this morning and had to clean it again when we gassed up at lunchtime. But Alabama had more colorful splats.
On the way through Mississippi and Missouri it was armadillo and raccoon on the shoulder, in Kansas we passed a coyote. Heck of a way to spot wildlife.
Onward to Colorado tomorrow.