Friday, July 30, 2010

We Have Arrived!

Flynn is smiling as big as I am!

Entering the hole they call Jackson.

My trusty companion and I have safely arrived in the bustling cowboy town of Jackson, Wyoming! Leaving Chubbuck, Idaho this morning was relaxed and slow going...Yes, you read that right...I said Chubbuck (even spell check is suspicious). I know some of you are scratching your heads thinking..."Wait a minute, didn't she say after BM she was staying in Pocatello?". Well, the room I reserved at the Motel 6 was supposed to be in Pocatello, however, the true location is up the highway in Chubbuck. Funny they never mentioned that over the phone. I did take a spin around Pocatello just to say I was there.

Anyway, moving on...the stretch of driving today was astounding! I oooooohed and aaawed all the way! This is beautiful country out here! I look forward to exploring more with Briunski this weekend! On that note, I don't believe the bears and buffalo of Yellowstone offer wi-fi so I may go a couple of days without updating. Rest assured, I'll take lots of pictures and touch base when we're out of the woods!

Thankful Thoughts:

I am thankful for all the scenic wonders our country has to offer and for the money dedicated toward taking care of our roads.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Niagara of the West

Shoshone Falls...shaped by a flood that ripped through the canyon about 15,000 years ago.

The falls tumble 212 feet to the canyon floor (50 feet higher than Niagara Falls).

Successfully ahead of the thunderstorm, I resumed my plan to check out Shoshone Falls. I'm glad I did! Although, this time of year, the river's flow is diverted for hydroelectric power production and for irrigation, the grandeur of the falls was striking! Flynn enjoyed free time to run in the park and, although we endured a little rainfall, it felt wonderful to stretch our legs!

Summer Storm

Add ImageAt 3:27 pm today, the National Weather Service doppler radar indicated a severe thunderstorm capable of producing quarter size hail, and destructive winds in excess of 70 mph.

The following advice was provided, "If you are in the path of the storm, take immediate action to protect life and property. Seek shelter inside a sturdy building and stay away from windows."

Sure thing...The advice would've been helpful had I not been driving along a two lane highway smack dab in the middle of it all. Lightening and thunder struck everywhere and often, the sky was black and the winds aforementioned were no exaggeration! In my 30's I've realized more than any other decade that life takes the path it is meant to take. Of the many things we cannot control, Mother Nature ranks high. With this in mind, I put both hands on the wheel, repeated deep breathing and hoped to beat the storm. As Mother would have it, I did.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

I Survived BM

Good morning! In the event you need somewhere to sleep between Winnemucca and Elko, Nevada there's a little place called...Battle Mountain. To prevent you from whizzing past this nondescript desert town, the initials 'BM' are enormously displayed on the hillside off of HWY 80.

Trivia: Battle Mountain is not a mountain. It's also been said that the battle after which it was named never happened. Once awarded the prestigious title "Armpit of America", BM (aptly initialed) offers a Chevron gas station, pizza for purchase at the liquor store, McDonald's, and a noisy, yet dog-friendly Super 8 Motel. A few dive bars and small casinos line a dusty block tucked behind an alarming number of aggressive pick-up trucks. Spending one night here doesn't exactly give me expertise to report on all that Battle Mountain has to offer, but, from what I can tell, their best feature is the sunset.

Nonetheless, I'm thankful that BM offered Flynn and I a safe place to rest.

Day 1

There's no better reminder that you're never truly alone on the road than cavorting among the masses at 10:00am in East Bay traffic. All chaos aside, Flynn and I made a smooth exit out of the Bay Area...only a smidgen behind schedule. Wait, we're on vacation...schedule schmedule!

Latin rhythms (Brazilian to be precise) followed by some old Widespread Panic carried us through to our first destination...Truckee, CA. We arrived in a timely fashion for our lunch date with Sarah and Geoff. After a quick tour of their adorable new home (see photo below), we enjoyed delicious deli sandwiches picnic style in their backyard. It was a wonderful break in the drive and, as always, we had a great time catching up!

Before leaving town...I stopped in for a visit with the Wilson clan! Having recently grown their family by 1, their home was filled with all the touching sounds of a newborn girl. Reese Aila Wilson is only 5 days old
today and couldn't be cuter!

As this day comes to a close, it's time to enjoy some microwave popcorn, lock the doors tight and get some much-needed shut eye (may not be easy given the clatter outside my door). I'm thankful for a beautiful day, all the love and friendship in my life and a safe first day on the road.
Ni night!!


Here in my room with a cup of coffee and a towel on my head I mentally and physically prepare for the hours I'm about to spend sitting in the car. Flynn gave me one bloodshot glance then gently returned his head to his pillow and closed his eyes. I know exactly how he feels. Ah well, Carpe Diem!!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


Funny how much preparation goes into a simple road trip with your dog...Turns out, finding accommodations for my sidekick has proven challenging, expensive and time consuming!! In the name of safety and comfort, I've persevered through the search for "dog-friendly" hotels in towns I've never heard of. After hours spent searching the internet (internet... I'm extremely grateful!), I've got my full itinerary organized by day, distance and places we'll be laying our weary heads each night. Flynn is a lucky guy...He better pack his swim suit and I suppose I'll have to discuss with him the rules of the mini-bar.