I am posting this Sunday morning in Colorado Springs – Looks like it’s going to be another beautiful day here, although tomorrow will be very different. Winter weather is going to swoop in overnight and tomorrow’s high won’t even reach the 40’s. Snow and perhaps ice, is predicted, although temperatures will rebound to higher levels and it will be clear sailing the rest of the week.
Tomorrow I am scheduled to drive about 2 1/2 hours north on Interstate 25 to Loveland, Colorado, about an hour north of Denver. I now plan to leave here late morning and arrive in Loveland by mid-afternoon. I’ll hunker down there for the remainder of the day. Tuesday I was planning to go back to Rocky Mountain National Park, which is due west of Loveland, to finish some unfinished business there but I’ll have to monitor their situation as they are at higher altitude and will likely have more snow and ice that the interstate. My guess is it will be a no-go.
And snow isn’t the only thing I need to keep an eye on…. Friday there was a tornado on the ground just southwest of Salina, Kansas, where I plan to stay a week from tomorrow as I start working my way east. Friday a funnel cloud was also spotted briefly east of Denver, where I’ll be staying for my final three nights in Colorado.
Yesterday I spoke with my friend Shawn and she asked how many miles I’ve put on the car so far this trip. As of when I got back to the house last night I’ve logged 30,509 miles since I left Durham on July 5. I bought my current car (a 2014 Nissan Altima) back in early December and I’ve put over 48,000 miles on it since then (I made a 6-week trip to the south-central US back in May and early June).
Surprisingly, when I arrived here in Colorado Springs Thursday night there was hardly any snow atop Pikes Peak, which is well over 14,000 feet. Yesterday’s temperature here in town was almost 80 and today (Sunday) is supposed to be in the mid-70’s.
Thursday night and Friday here were overcast and cooler. My Airbnb (I’m staying at the same place I did when I was here a month and a half ago) is only about two miles from the base of Cheyenne Mountain. Friday morning I could only see the houses at the very bottom of the mountain and if I didn’t know otherwise I would have had no idea there was such a big mountain there. Those clouds moved out Friday night and the weekend has been clear, dry and warm. Monday looks like just a weather hiccup and hopefully I can visit family and friends in the northeast US before getting back to Durham in time for Halloween.
Just as a heads-up, when I get to my youngest brother’s house near Cleveland, Ohio in a little less than two weeks I will suspend posts on the blog until I get back to North Carolina (unless any amusing JohnBoy stories develop during that time). In early November, after I’ve had a chance to unload my car and get back on a normal schedule, I’ll resume posting with some loose ends from this trip and some highlights of some of the trips I’ve taken prior to this one.
Also, after I leave my one-night stopover in Kansas my little contest which I started a while back will end. For those of who are new to the blog, I threw out a challenge back on September 2 (a post titled “Let’s play a little game…”). It’s not too late for you to get in on the action, although the likelihood of the challenge-event happening is dwindling. You won’t be able to post entries as a comment to that post but you can send them to me via the “Contact” function on the Home page of the blog. Not to worry – the contest will return next year!
Next year I plan to travel to California, the coasts of Oregon and Washington and put my car on a ferry to take it to Alaska. I was hoping to drive back east across southern Canada but I doubt I’ll have time. One big lesson I learned on this trip is to plan MORE TIME at many of the places I plan to visit.
So 2019 will be southern Canada, perhaps more in depth that I originally thought.
2020 will be loose ends in the lower 48, and many National Monuments which I’m learning have as much to offer as the National Parks I’ve been visiting do. They don’t get as much attention but some that I’ve learned about have been amazing. I have lots of homework to do over the winter.
2021 I may actually be able to stay home, read books on my porch and binge-watch TV shows I’ve been told I should see. I also need to get back to my hobby of flying radio-controlled helicopters which is VERY time consuming.
Looks like they’re getting ready to start the NASCAR race from Charlotte so I plan to watch it until the remnants of Hurricane Nate get there, although they are starting an hour earlier than they planned to so maybe they’ll be able to get it all in. I then hope to zip into town and visit the US Olympic Training facility before it closes at 5pm local time. I thought I would do that Monday morning before driving up to Loveland but the weather forecast changed that.