Still pending for this blog

OTR9 Extended

November 10, 2018….Because I am transitioning to use my trip blogs also as my journals, and because these trips do not really end when I pull into my garage, as I did last night, I will be posting my post-trip notes on a separate blog <> so that I do not detract from the OTR9 trip blog itself.  I will also use that blog to start the planning for the next road trip, whenever that is to occur.  That blog is accessible from the link in the right column, at the top. The only new postings I intend to make on this blog will be the summary of the trip, which I will post in a few days, and the unveiling of Donner’s official portrait, as explained on a link to the right also, although there might be others. The OTR9X blog is public, although some if not all of the postings might not make sense to many.




Day 49: Friday, November 9, The Journey Ends, 4:10 pm

At this exact moment, i pulled up to my home in Washington, ending an absolutely fantastic journey. Wow, to use a word i uttered so often during the last 49 days. Wow.

Two years ago, after the challenges we faced on that journey, i vowed to get me, Donner and the Defender on the road again for another journey, and we did. More important, the journey was a success because we all made it back home safely.

As i drove the last 200 miles back from West Virginia today in foul weather (heavy rain, high winds, and lots of thick fog, but no trucks or dark),i kept thinking about what made thiscp particular journey so great. The one thought that kept coming to me was not the utterly fantastic natural beauty we experienced, or tenting in incredibly beautiful places every night, or the daily challenges we faced, but the people. What great people i met on this journey. And Donner thinks the same about all the dogs he met, more than 100.

I will write up a summary of the trip in the next few days and post it here, right now, i have a lot of unloading to do.

I hope those of you who followed my blog got some vicarious joy from my trip.

Ed and Donner, who is anxious to get home.

Day 49, As It Is Happening, Go Home

For the first time in 49 days, i am punching the Go Home button on my Garmin. Although i am in and soon will be leaving West Virginia, I will still play Take Me Home, Country Road all the way home. Sadly, Home is no longer where my tent is.

Day 49, Friday, November 9: Cheat River Lodge

Still bivouacked in a cabin in West Virginia. Raining today. Trying to decide if i should head for home -203 miles down the road – or stay here for another day and read some of that book i brought along. I never quite got past page 1, that's how much discretionary time I had on this trip.


Day 47, Wednesday, November 7, Poplar Cabin, Cheat River Lodge, Elkins West Virginia

What a way to bring this fantastic journey to an end, almost.

After a good night's sleep at our cozy bivouac at the Motel 6 in Columbus, a good decision on my part, the day started off tame enough. When i walked outside to the Defender in my night clothes to check to see if i had left the gas cap off yesterday, which might explain my red "check engine" light staring at me  (I did not), i noticed an unususl number of vehicles scattered about the parking lot, and an equally unusual number of men (and maybe women) about, mostly dressed in black, some wearing balaclavas, and some breaking into the vehicles near me. My first thought was that It was cold, but not that cold to warrant balaclavas, let alone break unto vehicles. My next thought was, Ah, so this is how it ends.  I could see the headlines of the first page of the local paper - "Man Traveling with his Dog...." - and then the nice obituary in the back of the same paper - "Man Travejing with his Dog....."

Most sensible people would have darted back inside, locked their door, snd called 911 to report suspicious activity. I darted back inside, not to seek refuge, but to get dressed so i could return to the action in progress to have something interesting  to report on my blog. After dressing for the occasion, i returned to the Defender, pretending to be loading it. More men dressed in black were now in evidence, and the number of scattered vehicles increased too. But i assumed a sense of relief -or was it fear? - when i spotted the letters P O L I C E on the backs and skeeves of some of the balaclava–clad men (and maybe women), and the letters D E A on others, and then was almost convinced something was going down. Then, when a gentleman in fatigues came up behind me, outfitted in the fanciest get-ready-for-battle body armor  and other such regalia, including one of those big firearms usually carried by Arnold Schwarzenegger in his Terminator roles, i was fully convinced something was going on, unless i was catching the tail end of an extended Halloween party. Since i felt safe to be surrounded by such firepower,but curious about what was happening,  i decided to use my humor to find out what was going on, so i said to Arnold, I hope you guys aren't after that rot-gut pipe tobacco i bought yesterday. To his credit, he smiled and said something like, Just a little morning incident we are tending to. Instead of tending to the business at hand, he fired (Oops, poor choice of words) some questions atbme about my rig, until his equally outfitted-for-battle supervisor, the one with raw meat stains on his teeth, barked some order to him, which sent Arnold quickly fleeing away my comfort zone into harm's way.

Donner, whom i had loaded into the Defender, was a witness to the bringing down of the perp in  a peaceful manner. And so, all the balaclava-clad men and women got into their vehicles and exited the scene, leaving me behind with Donner and my rot-gut pipe tobacco.

And so, we moved eastward on our journey, but only after a stop at Petsmart for some treats for Donner and a resupply stop at the nearby Walmart for our last days. What would we do without Walmart?

After resuppling, i had to make a decision. Do i head for DC today, or do i stop in between at one of two cabins i knew of in West Virginia for a final layover before the final leg home, and if the latter, which one, Cheat River Lodge in Elkins , or the other one near Frostburg in western Marylsnd.

I will pass on explaining the rationale of my decision to select the Cheat River cabin, where i last stayed in 1995 with a Russian friend when we attended a Land Rover rally in my new Defender. I called the lodge, and the owner, Roxy,  said they had a cabin available and that dogs were permittef. She owns a black German shepherd herself who does search and rescue work. I reserved  a cabin for two nights to give me one whole day to get through some of my post-trip writings before i get home. Knowing how those back roads of West Virginia can be problematic, i punched Cheat River Lodge into both My Garmin and Google Maps.

The trip from Columbus Ohio eastward was not partcilsfly memorable driving on the interstates. In fact, the main reason i do not like the stretch of highway from Kansas to DC is that it is all interstate, usually crowded, especially with trucks, and so there is simply no time or opportunity to enjoy the drive. But when the road today turned into meandering US 50,the same road i abandoned 2000 miles back near Ely Nevada to take in the Grand Canyon and that could take me almost to my front door, the drive turned  into gently rollings hills with trees decked out in their beautiful late-fall wardrobe. I had forgotten how beautiful this part of the country is. In fact, get off the interstates and travel the back roads and every place in the country has its own unique beauty. The next time i travel across this beautiful land of ours, I will take route. 50 or 64 the whole way and enjoy the entire ride.

Dark set in right on cue, at 530. There was no enjoyment driving in the dark the rest of the way to Cheat River. In fact, that drive, especially the last five miles to my canin, has now moved into the number 1 place on my list of "challenging"  drives not only on this trip but ever, and it had some tough competition.

Eventually, after my Garmin and Google Maps led me astray, i found my cabin for the night. My God, what a setting it is. A fantastic log cabin situated at the end of a remote dirt road amidst a forest of poplar trees right on the river' edge. I would have sent this posting last night, however, I spent a good deal of time enjoying some wine while sitting in the hot tub on the partially covered deck outside,  staring at the star-filled heavens above in the cold night air. If I had tried to imagine a perfect setting for ending this fantastic journey, I never would have come up with anything like this. In retrospect, what I should have done is rented this place for 50 days and written a best– seller novel about a fictitious journey of a man on the road with his dog and Defender. If any reader of this blog lives within 250 miles of this place, you should add at least one long stay here to your bucket list. It is really quite nice. 

To make matters even better here, as I was preparing my and Donner's dinner on the outside deck, two old local dogs wandered onto the deck to welcome Donner  to the neighborhood. They all exchanged the information that dogs are wont to do, I gave them each some of Donner treats, and they moved on. Donner, needless to say, was thrilled to have met two more friends on this long journey.

Tomorrow, i will try to write a summary of my trip, or at least an  outline  for it, and then decide when to make the last 200 miles home.

Ed and Donner, from a fantastic oasis in West Virginia.

Day 47, As It Is Happening, Rest stop in Ohio, 2pm

Next stop, West Virginia, just up the road. I decided to hang out for a few days at the Cheat River Lodge in Elkins WV. Stayed there a number of times. Nice cabins, right on the river. My only chores there...
- to do list for when i get home
- review of this trip, i.e., what to do or not to do for next trip
- summary of trip
- rationalize my own life, i.e., apply lessons learned from this trip

Day 46, The Trip So Far, The Loop Has Been Closed, Columbus Ohio, 9652 miles, 420 to go.

Next stop...a cabin in West Virginia to unwind from this fantastic journey for two days.

Day 46,Tuesday, Nov 6, Columbus Ohio, 9652 miles, 420 to go

In brief...

Drove from Terre Haute to Indianapolis. East drive in good weather.

Decided to visit my lovely ex-wife, Connie, who lived just two miles from where I closed the loop on this trip. Symbolic. My intended-one-hour visit morphed into three, so, after restocking from Connie's cupboard and pantry, we got on our way, deciding to forfeit my ritual visit to James Dean's hometown of Fairmount.

Decided to make time on the road and head to Columbus instead of camping in John Bryan State Park, where we camped on Day 2. Making time on the road is more important now than another night of tenting. Driving I-70 in the day was a charm compared to last night. Even driving it in the dark for two hours was welcome.

Ended up at a convenient Motel 6 in Columbus. Donner went right for the big dog bed they put out for him and did not move the entire night.

Tomorrow, we can go straight home to DC, or i can hang out for two days at one of two cabins in West Virginia i like to unwind from my trips. I will decide in the morning. This will give true meaning to my playing, Take Me Hime, Country Road.

Ed and Donner

My pesky check engine light came on during the drive today. I looked closely to make sure it did not say CHUCK ENGINE, as happened on OTR-8 on the Alaska highway. Lucky me that this happened 420 miles from home and not 5000 like in 2016.

Day 46, As It Is Happening, a little action here

Biviuacked at a Motel 6 in Columbus last night. Woke up to a little police action. Seems my neighbor likes to deal. Donner was very interested in the goings on. At least a dozen law enforcement types.

Day 45, As It Is Happening, Ohio rest stop, 8pm

Here we are (Donner and the Defender, anyway) at our last rest stop for the day, near Columbus, Ohio, where we will "bivouac" for the night, sort of, and after a very pleasant day. After 9630 miles, we are only 440 miles from home, although i may take my time in getting there. What a trip this was!

Day 41 photo

I considered pitching the tent here on the Colorado River, but then my better judgment took hold...

Day 42 photo

It was like i made a wrong turn and found myself in the Yukon again.

Day 43 photo

Donner getting ready to leave his preferred bivouac in Goodland Kansas.

Day 43 photo

Our camp at Perry Lake. Cozy, in a beautiful setting. At night, we could hear the trains in the distance.

Dsy 45 photo

Six hours of driving through this, and then six hours of driving through this in the dark with trucks flying by every minute. And people ask me if these trips are fun.

Day 45,Monday, November 5, Terre Haute. Indiana motel, 9361 miles so far, 655 to go

On the way out of my wonderful bivouac at Perry Lake, i toured the park. I discovered that the camp was only a couple of hundred feet up the road. And it was named, Edwardsville!

The 455 mile drive from Perry Lake, Kansas, to Indiana was terrible. Heavy rain the whole time, accompanied by high winds. Truck after truck after truck on the highway, too, worse at night. Hit the rush hour in St. Louis right on target. Then, night fell at 530 and i still had five hours to go in the dark. All this on a strange road with road construction zones reducing traffic to one lane running for 10 or more miles. oh, and a windshield wiper that nevervworked so hard before that it would frequently stop in mid cycle for a few seconds, and then carry on. The supposed-six hour trip took 12 hours. Worst drive of my life. I guess this is the price i have to pay to reenter civilization.Had i suspected this, i would have split the trip into two.

Decided to camp in a motel in Terre Haute tonight to make time tomorrow on the road.


Photo is of Donner (behind the two black containers) eating his dinner, which i made for him on the road in heavy rain.

Day 45, As It Is Happening, i-70 from Kansas to Indiana, 2pm est

Bivouac last night was absolutely wonderful, Perry Lake. Clearly, one of my favorite camps. Best night's sleep of the entire journey. A Thousand Stars in The Sky. Problem was, it wasn't a camp but a picnic area in an absolutely lovely park. I had my own lighted pavilion with an electrical outlet for a tent heater in the 37 degree temperature, but i do not have a heater, except Donner. This morning, it started to rain promptly at 7, as i figured. Then a park ranger came by in his truck, waved to me, and moved on. It does not get any better than that. Probably pitied me.

On my way to Terre Haute now. Weather has been just foul for almost 200 miles so far. See photo. Another day, another challenge. Need to decide in two hours where to bivouac tonight.

Dave 44, Sunday, November 4, Perry Lake, near Topeka Kansas, 8858 miles, 1135 to DC

Although I hated to break the stride of the trip and spend the night in the motel, it was a wise choice. Donner certainly appreciated it. Then again, we really had no choice since the one campground that I knew in Goodland Kansas was closed for the season. Thank goodness for Motel 6. Right off the highway and all the basics any weary tent camper would appreciate. And only $69, a few dollars more than some premium campsites today.

The 345-mile drive to the Topeka area was actually quite pleasant. Interstate 70 from Denver eastward is a straight shot. And driving through Kansas is actually quite a contrast to many other drives. The rest stops are quite nice, and marked well in advance so you can plan, there are a sufficient number of services at occasional exits, and the scenery, albeit agricultural farmland for the most part, is quite pleading. I have taken this route three or four times already and do not remember that it was so pleasant.

Our goal for the night was to reach Perry Kake, just north of Topeka, where Erde and I spent a memorable evening back in 2014, the only campers in the park and perhaps on the lake. That may be because we actually couldn't find the campground, and bivouacked in a lovely spot right on the lake that I think was supposed to be a picnic area.

As I got closer to Topeka, I checked the weather for tomorrow and there is a 100% chance of rain in the morning just about the time we will be getting up. I debated whether to for go camping out tonight because of the rain tomorrow and checked the availability of a room in a nearby Motel 6. But then I tossed aside my plans to spend the evening in the motel by choosing the more difficult path, which is what I'm generally disposed to do, so we headed to Perry Lake, hoping to find the camp this time since we still have some daylight with us.

Both Garmin and Google Maps directed me into the same area that I drove into four years ago and I still couldn't find the park. The first sign told me that I was entering the park. Then, 2 miles up the winding park road, without having seen any signs of a campground, another side announced – you are now leaving the park. I drove on and passed the same bivouac spot where Erde and I camped alone four years ago and saw that that spot was obliterated over for some reason. So, we drove on into the park or whatever it is we are in.

Just as the sun set I came to a wonderful verdant peninsula with a huge picnic pavilion. Since there was no sign of any civilian life anywhere in any direction, I parked the Defender right next to the pavilion, and set up camp. This way, when the rain does come, I will have the pavilion to flee to, to help me break camp in a way so that nothing gets wet, including Donner.

The setting of this site is absolutely idyllic. Perry Lake, a reservoir actually, managed by the Army Corps of Engineers, surrounds us in about 260°. There are no sounds whatsoever. It is total silence here, except for a few ducks who happened by. Right now, millions and millions of stars are shining brightly above us, despite Topeka's presence only 20 miles or so to the south. Around the lake on the other side I can see only a dozen lights. We are completely alone here and have the entire park to ourselves. Only one vehicle passed through the park in the three hours we have been here so far, and I don't expect anyone will be visiting for the rest of the night. If I wanted to create a setting for the last night of this trip as a memorable one, this is precisely the setting I would describe. To get a feeling for where we are, I am showing the geographical coordinates below.

Tomorrow, I hope the break camp before the rains come and head to Indiana, where after 45 days, we will finally close the loop on this trip. That is, if all goes well. And Tuesday, I hope to have lunch somewhere off interstate 70 with my ex-wife, Connie, who lives not far from Indianapolis.

Ed and Donner from lovely, peaceful, empty Perry Lake in Kansas.

Day 44, The Trip So Far, Perry Lake, near Topeka Kansas, 8858 miles, 1135 miles to DC

Tomorrow, if all goes well, we will close the loop on this trip.

Day 44 As It Is Happening, Kansas rest stop

I have traveled through 20 states. Kansas gets the award for having the most pet-friendly rest stops.

Day 44, As It Is Happening, noon, Kansas plain rest breal

Heading to a camp near Topeka Kansas. Long, flat windy drive along the plains bordering interstate 70. A nice drive.

Day 43, Saturday, November 3, Goodland Kansas, 8406 miles traveled, 1461 to go

My decision to spend the night and a rustic campers cabin at Glenwood Canyon resort was probably the better decision. While it would have been adventurous to have spent the night tenting on the edge of the Colorado River, across from a single track railroad line, with the rain pelting the tent during the night, in retrospect, it was a wise decision. I saved two hours in not having to set up and break camp, and so got on the road earlier this morning.

If I had notjust come from the fantastic settings where I spent the last 42 days, the drive from Glenwood Canyon to Denver would have been extraordinary. Interstate 70 weaves in an out of the Rockies, canyons, rivers, on what has to be one of the prettiest drives in the country. But also, one of the most treacherous drive. Just as we were leaving Glenwood Canyon, I the light rain changed to a light snow. As we drove out to Denver cover 138 miles away, the snow intensified. By about Mile 30, it was getting serious. For one long stretch, it was almost blizzard-like conditions. Welcome to I-70 at this time of year here. As soon as I had the opportunity, i pulled the Defender off at an exit, locked the differentials and put the vehicle in lo gear, and the road, with Its twists and turns, I ascents and decents, was a lot easier to take.

I stopped off in Denver for a couple of hours to visit a college and grad school class, Bob Kolesik, and his wife Dorothy. At one time, I figured out that on trips like this I come within 250 miles of probably 85% of the population of the United States, so it really isn't going out of my way to visit old friends.

I got on the road to Goodland Kansas at 3:30. Originally, I had planned to stay at the Goodland KOA, but it closed on October 31. If I cannot find another campground near there, or depending upon the weather, I will probably stay at a Motel 6 which is right off the highway. The adventurous part of this trip has ended, at least the part that I can control.

The drive from Denver to Goodland Kansas is a pretty straight shot. So, I did not mind driving half of it in the dark. When we arrived at 7:30, there were no other campgrounds that I could see, so I checked into a Motel 6 for the first time. While the accommodations are modest, it more than served my purpose. The good news is that I don't have to call around and ask Motel 6 if they take pets because they always do. Needless to say, Donner made himself right at home on the nice big dog bed they provided in the room for him. In fact, it was the only bed, and Donnertreated it like it is alone.

It saddens me to think that this trip is coming to an end. However, I think it's time to put the tent away, make my way home, and reflect on how I should change my life as a result of this experience over the last 44 days. I think it's changed already.

By the way, this leg of the trip is the worst part of all my trips, traveling from Denver to home. Not only am I inclined to make haste to get home, but the scenery is far less interesting than everything I've experienced up until now. And I will encounter more cities over the next four days than I have on the entire previous 43 days. Many of the camps are closed. And the weather usually is worse than in the rest of the country. However, I have no choice but to move on, and I will tent where I can, but seek bivouac in refuge in cozier, more convenient places if that is consistent with my goal of getting us home safely and quickly.

Ed and Donner from Kansas

Day 42, As It Is Happening, 6pm

The sun setting over our bivouac for the night. After 4,instead of driving to Denver in the dark and rain, i took the first camp i could find. We were going to tent right on the Colorado River, but rain threatened and i needed time to do my laundry and extra time on the road tomorrow, so we are camped here for the night in one of the primitive campers' cabins, as they call them. Only $10 more than a tent site.


Day 43 photos Another challenging day...

We went from this yesterday (about 75 during the day) in the Utah desert...

To this, this morning on the way to Denver going through the Rockies.  Let me say, It was rather challenging driving, to say the least. Snow for over fifty miles. But at the first opportunity, i pulled the Defender over, locked the front and rear differentials, shoved the transmission in low gear, and played I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas on my iPad. Then, all of a sudden, the snow disappeared when we dropped down to 7000 feet.

Day 42, Friday, November 2, Glenwood Canyon Cabins, Colorado.

The sun rises here at 730, but i was up my usual. Thought about staying in this lovely setting at Arches one more day, but i agreed that it was time to bring this epic journey to an end. Again, i took my time to enjoy the moment, and got on the road at 1030. Dogs are not allowed on the trails here and so, since i do not leave Donner, it took us only an hour to drive out of the park, taking everything in we needed to.

An hour after leaving the park, we jumped onto I-70, the last road that will take us home. Fortunately, no incident like 2016 happened this time.

Since i got a late start, i was not confident we would make it to Denver today, so at 4, i started looking for a place to bivouac for the night. Chris, my tenting neighbor at Arches recommended Glenwood Canyon, tenting on the Colorado River. When we pulled in there at 430, clouds were forming, a wind was picking up, and the temperature was getting colder. Add to that the time i heeded to do my laundry tonight and my desire to put in a full day of driving on the road tomorrow, and si i opted for a camper's rustic cabin for the night, only $10 more thar the campsite on the Colorado River i was planning to get.

Tomorrow, i have to decide whether to see some friends and then stay in Denver overnight, or make it as far east as i can on the road. If i do the latter, i will be home in one week. the truth is, as fantastic as this journey was - still is - it is tine to bring it to a fast end.

Ed and Donner, sound asleep in the nice big dog bed he thinks that they put out for him here.

Day 42 photo

I swear this guy looks like a miniature German shepherd.

Day 42 photo

Our bivouac at sunset for the night at Glenwood Springs Colorado.not the Ritz, but not the Cave Lake yurt, or a tent, either.

Day 41 photo

Out tent site at Arches. Perhaps, my best ever, but who is judging?

We could see the sunset and sunrise. I could have stayed a whole extra week, but the road beckoned.

Day 41 photo

Donner and Piper at Arches in a standoff. They became friends, but Piper remained wary.

Day 41 photo

The Arches valley. As beautiful as the rock formations are odd.

Day 41

Who can name this rock formation?

Day 41 photo

Driving through Arches, i couldn't help but name the different rock formations. Can you see the three wisemen?

Day 41

On the way to Moab, we drove by the Monuments Valley, the Valley of the Gods and about a half dozen other national monuments. This road 191 is considered one of the most beautiful to drive, and i believe that. John Wayne made many of his westerns here, if that matters. almost looks man made, doesn't it?

Day 41 photo

Donner still controls the music on my iPad.

Day 41 photo

We saw Bears Ears National Monument for 30 miles as we drove north to Moab.


I was finally able to call up my blog for the first time in weeks. I just noticed that my iPad and/or Google are really screwing up the chronological order of the postings and photos. Sorry about that.

Day 41,Thursday, Nov 1, Am:...Recapture Lodge, Bluff Utah: Pm, Arches Campground

What a relief finding this lodge was. And not only because of the time savings. Had we taken the road all the way to Moab, we would have missed some of the finest scenery on the planet, and would have been dodging feral horses along the way, possibly.

As soon as we left the lodge, we passed Bears Ears National Monument, the one Trump wants to scale back. This entire highway 191 is just one national treasure after another. Hundreds of miles of awesome beauty.

Although i was not optimistic that i would find a site at the Arches campground, i drove the 18 miles through the surreal park to see. Although the sign at the entrance said "campground full," i found one site (17) open, so i settled in, and was rewarded for my persistence.

You can look up yourself what Arches is all about, so i will not spend time trying to describe it anymore than to say that it is a huge collection of the strangest rock formations i ever saw. Imagine a shape, and you will find it here. You can easily identify many of the shapes with persons, places or things. At times, some of them are so representative of man-made objects that you think they were made by man. Besides the rock formations, the valley itself is a marvel to behold.

What a view from out campsite. Just when i thought i could not do better. At night, we traded the marvelous high desert view for a brilliant display of millions and millions of heavenly bodies.

My site neighbor, Chris, the consummate tent traveller, invited a few of his fellow travelers to his site in the evening for a big fire and some wine. Donner and i graciously accepted. For perhaps what may be our last night of tenting, it was quite a treat. Paul and Kim from the Netherlands told us about their three-month journey over here; Nurissa from Tennessee explained how she is using this trip to forge a plan for a future life of adventure; LeeAnn explained how she has been living and plans to live permanently traveling on the road. A great gathering of fellow travelers to share stories and friendship in a beautiful setting.

Tomorrow, finally, we get on the road home.

Ed and Donner from Arches camp in Moab Utah

Day 39 photo

I aologize to the Defender for leaving it out of the prior photo.

Day 40 photo

We could not resist stopping at the last two view points on our way home, and we were rewarded in spades.

Day 38 photo

The drive back from The pet hospital today was absolutely splendid, not only because I had Donner back with me. The last 45 minutes we were treated to vivid displays of the western sunset, ending with one below just as we were pulling into the park.I have never seen such a dazzling display of colors in a sunset as i saw tonight. If this was the only treat we had here, the trip down to the Grand Canyon would have been worth it.

Day 41, As It Is Happening, Nov 1, Arches National Park, Moab, Utah, 3pm

As i was heading for I-70 and passing Arches National Park, i slammed on the brakes, drove 18 miles thru this unreal landscape, got one of the few campsites left (below) and pitched the tent for the night. This place is surreal.

Tomorrow i will head for 70 and on at its end, home. I think.


Day 42, As It Is Happening , 12:40 pm

That's Interstate 70:crossing over down the road. This will be the last of several hundred highways and byways that we have taken this fantastic trip. It will take us 2010 miles almost to our front door in six days. Then again, look what happened two years ago when i posted a similar thing.

Day 42 message

Ran out of iPad batter, battery charge battery, cell phone battery, two cameras' batteries, pipe tobacco and patches within minutes of each other last night. That tells me so something.

So, losting and photos for day 41 coming later. On my way towards Denver now,


Day 42,AM, THE TRIP SO FAR. Arches NP, Moab, Utah, 7856 miles, 2055 miles to go

Leaving spectacular Arches in Moab now, heading for a camp between here and Denver.

Day 41 photo

Our camp at Arches. What a fantastic decision to camp here. My God, this place is surreal.

Day 41 photo

The view from our tent at Arches. What any absolutely splendid place this is.

Day 41 photod

A sign of appreciation from Donner at Arches in our back yard. He is recovering nicely.