Arizona/New Mexico/Texas/Oklahoma/Kansas/Missouri

Route Map:

(Map Copywright 1999 by American Automobile Association)

This trip was a "rest" from the long hours at work recently -- I had four days off, and naturally I used them the best way I knew how. The trip, in spite of some nasty weather the first couple of days, turned out to be great in the end. And, as in all other trips of at least this length, there was the "usual" funny stuff while driving..... But I'm not gonna say any more on that.

The three photographs as you can see are all of the Gateway Arch in Saint Louis, Missouri -- the half-way point of this trip. They were all taken around sunrise on Monday, April 23, after a 20+ hour drive from Gallup, New Mexico......

Selected Trip Journal entries:

DATE: APRIL 20, 2001

9:55 PM = Left home on another long road trip, after a long time since the last one. Song on radio when i turned the engine on = "The Promise" (wow!)

DATE: APRIL 21, 2001

1:34 AM = 2422.2 = 'twas SNOWING 'tween Mojave-n-Bakersfield! (~4000 feet)

DATE: APRIL 21, 2001

10:23 AM = the grand canyon State. 528 miles. 'tis snowing -- HARD!

12:50 PM = gas in Williams, AZ. 'tis still snowing -- HARDER! (and now i went outside the car!)

DATE: APRIL 22, 2001

'tis still snowin' -- not enough to need chains. this temp this morning w/ windchill was 5F... 23-29 MPH winds... otherwise 33F.

DATE: APRIL 22, 2001

11:29 AM = It ain't snowin' no mo', and shoodn't for the rest of dis trip.

DATE: APRIL 22, 2001

5 PM = Passin' thru Dalhart, TX with 1 nut and 1 "good" driver in front of me -- Makin' good time because of these 2 characters!! 1315 miles

6:29/1420 miles = i'm in kansas, and following the yellow brick road to Dorothy's house, which is 5 miles from here.

i didn't go to dorothy's house -- or amelia earhart's museum... just kept drivin' and driving' an' drivin' and listenin' to 95.5, 106.7, and 107.5.

7:33-7:37 = In Minneola = 1486.3 miles. $19.50 Gas [434.1 mile fillup - must have had a GREAT tailwind!]

DATE: APRIL 22, 2001

9:31 PM/1596.0 miles = Took turnoff for 156 East. There was a small detour - next to Cheyenne Bottoms Lake, then Hwy 4 East thru Claflin, then another local road back North to 156 (11 miles instead of about 4-5) -- no complaints though!

10:19 PM/1647 trip miles = entered good ole I-70 East. This is the first time I'm coming on this section of the road since April 1995. I fully intend to go till St Louis (at least).

DATE: APRIL 23, 2001

12:15 AM = Took I-70x363 in Topeka. 1784 trip miles. Drove around a nicely lit capitol.

DATE: APRIL 23, 2001

1:18 AM/1848 = I-70 was closed, so had to exit on 3rd Street (I-70x423). Roamed around Kansas City in some areas that reminded me of the "Saint Louis scene" in "National Lampoon's Vacation"! $15 = Gas somewhere near the river (i dont know which river -- Missouri or Kansas R.?)

DATE: APRIL 23, 2001

3:04 AM/1950 = Started changing my clothes.

3:10 AM/1957 = Finished changing all my clothes -- I'm getting better at it!

DATE: APRIL 23, 2001

5:30 AM = Parked @ Arch parking; 2102.7 miles.

6:20 AM = Back to car after a pleasant stroll around the arch and some nice sunrise pictures.

9:20 AM = Rest area near I-44x113; 2285. Caught a few winks, then on the road again at 2 PM to the tune of "Ob La Di Ob La Da".

DATE: APRIL 23, 2001

8:24 PM = Entered the Lone Star State while watching a gorgeous pink sunset! (this is I-40m177.2)

DATE: APRIL 24, 2001

9:50 AM = Checked out at my leisure after seeing the movie "The opposite sex and how to live with them" -- turned on car and the song "Why do fools fall in love" is playing on the radio!! Anyway, leaving this late to drive 1200+ miles today may be a mistake, but I also want to see if it's possible to stay in Oklahoma and reach home on the last day -- something i might need to do on a 4 or 5 day round-trip coast- to-coast drive.

9:54/2967.9 miles = On the road again. Home ETA provided I dont get another crazy idea at the last minute = 1:30 AM PST. EMA = 4190 miles

DATE: APRIL 24, 2001

10:18 AM = near I-40m303 = 3000 trip miles; ridin' along with a Ford Explorer from VA and a Chevy Monte Carlo from IL -- makin' good time -- and the Ford Explorer has eaten our dust by the time I've finished writing this!

12:05 = Passed x159 for I-25. 3142.4. i dont like this - 2 morons in 2 lanes; trucks in left lane; construction all around.

12:20/3161 = the monte carlo exited. :-(

DATE: APRIL 24, 2001

1:19/3217.8 = Back on freeway and in search of Gray Monte Carlo.

DATE: APRIL 24, 2001

1:23 PM PST = the grand Canyon State. 3302.1 trip miles (@ I-40m359.6). Home EMA = 4185.8 (based on 2 stops) = 12:41 from now = 2:04 AM = AVG 69.674115 MPH

2:14/3369.3 trip miles = 45,000 TOTAL MILES 384 DAYS AFTER BUYING THIS CAR!

DATE: APRIL 24, 2001

6:07 PM (1 minute early) = in the home state again -- the sun is still waaaaaaaaay up there! 3660.2 trip miles

Idea for song parody = "I got you bug" - based on "I got you babe" (Sonny & Cher).. Also: "We will, we will, squish you!" (Based on "Rock you")... "I got you, on my windshield, I got you, on my hood, I got you on my antenna, I got you, and all your friends...."

7:08 PM = 3738.1 miles = I'm 1 mile ahead of schedule -- need avg 76 MPH for next hour.

7:26/3738.8 miles = Passed Ludlow exit while watching another good sunset behind the mountains. (yesterday's sunset was the best one of this trip -- tonite's is 2nd).

8:04/3814.1 miles = I-15; 4 minutes ahead of schedule.

From about 8-9:20 PM = wrote "This Squish"

10:02 PM/3943.1 miles = EXACTLY on time = Highway 99 North.

10:10-10:18 = In Bakersfield. $17.10 gas.... Also cleaned the windshield -- I needed to clean it LESS THAN 10 MINUTES after leaving Kingman - which was the inspiration for "This Squish"

10:37/3966.7 miles = Entered good ole I-5 -- but I'm 1 minute early and 0.3 miles late!

11:50 PM = Changed to "convertible mode"... 4059 miles

12:28 AM = 4111.1 = Said goodbye to white jaguar convertible, decelerated from 105 MPH to about 30 MPH, and took exit for Hwy 152 one minute ahead of schedule (but 0.9 miles behind schedule).

1:17 AM = Entered San Jose city limits. 4164.75 trip miles. this trip ain't over yet! i'm gettin' another crazy idea!

No more crazy ideas at 1 AM!!!

1:36 AM = HOME (finally!) 4185.9 trip miles. I had estimated 1:39 AM and 4185.2 trip miles 8 hours ago in Arizona!

Unplanned Trips