A Colorado Journey

CHAPTER 1:

 

Ever since I returned from the Moab trip in May, I’ve been itching to go on another expedition. I wanted to escape the oppressive summer heat (more specifically, the nasty NY heatwave of 100+ degrees) so I desperately wanted to go somewhere where the air is cool,crisp, and fresh…and then I heard Colorado calling me. I convinced the wife, who isn’t a big Jeeper/explorer (hates spending time in cars, doesn’t “get” expedition offroading, etc) to come along, so, without any plans, we packed up the Jeep, locked up the house, and hit the open road.

The first destination would be Cortez Colorado, one of the most Southwest towns in the state. The route once again was the I70 and then mountain roads to our destination.

I wasn’t sure where we would stay, if hotels were fully booked, etc, so I packed ALL of my gear, and by ALL gear, I mean enough gear for a small army to survive….in Siberia, with no food and water….for 2 months. I took camping gear, water purification gear, food, cooking gear (grill, etc) and a slew of other items, including a portable toilet…still want to be civilized you know? After a full day of packing, the Jeep was ready to go! 2000+ miles of open road, here we go!

We left NJ close to midnight. I usually prefer to drive at night (especially in heavily populated areas) and driving at night keeps you “not tired” longer. The sun tires your eyes out, so anytime you have a long drive, in my humble opinion, night time driving is the way to go. We stopped at a local 7-11 to pick up a few must have snacks (gum, kit kats, beef jerky, and sour skittles for the wife) and hit the road.

By the time the sun came up….

We have made it to Ohio. I have been driving straight through the night. I’m very good at long distance driving (don’t get tired, enjoy it, etc) so long drives are not a big deal for me.

The morning came, and it was time for a good ol’ american breakfast. Now, Im not a fan of Ihop and Denny’s but I am a HUGE fan of this place…good fresh well made breakfast food. The breakfast of fat champions.

Not bad for two people huh?

After breakfast, I let the wife hit the road for a little bit and let me sleep a little bit. She managed to take us through Ohio and into Indiana!

During the drive, the Jeep hit a milestone!

After the wife has been at the wheel for 1 tank (about 4 hours and 350 miles) we switched back. She was tired, and I was well rested, so I took the next shift. She fell asleep and I drove on. I saw this prank played on someone once on a break.com video, but never thought that I’d ever have a chance to do it. Well, I did. The wife was sleeping and I came upon this…doing 70 miles per hour.

I yelled like crazy, she jumped up, saw this, and almost wet herself. I had an excellent giggle at her expense.

After a bunch of uneventful cornfield lined driving, we crossed another state line…

Greetings from Christ again….

The World’s Largest Cross

Yet another state line….

Driving away from the nasty NE heatwave is proving more and more difficult…god I hate the heat.

Clouds we hangin’ low and I was praying for some rain…which never came.

After a bunch of driving past nothing, it was nice to see something of note…

After lots more driving, the sun was once again departing for the evening, and we settled in for the night shift….no stops on this train, it’s a non-stop ride all the way to the end.

We “woke up” on the plains of Kansas. The road was pitch black and you can’t see anything past your own headlights at night, so no photos of anything during the night drive.

The morning fog was rolling in, and at some points, it was so thick you can see about two car-lengths in front of you.

After another LONG while we made it into Colorado. Unfortunately I missed the Colorado border sign….one I was hoping not to miss….doh! We drove on I70 for a little while in Colorado, then finally turned off onto some much smaller B roads….pulled over for gas at a local small town, but didn’t realize this would cost us almost 30 minutes!!!! This train was like 5 miles long!

Finally, after what felt like an eternity, we made it to the real colorado….the green, mountain-ey Colorado! Pulled over in the San Juan National Forest to admire some scenery and breathe in some real fresh air!  The weather was magnificent!

After 200 or so more miles (long LONG miles since you are driving on slow going mountain roads) we arrived at our destination….

Took 41 hours of nonstop driving, but worth it for what’s to come!  We settled in for the rest of the day, relaxing, getting a bite to eat,                                                                              swimming at the pool and soaking off the stiff limbs in the hot tub.

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