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summer journey page 5

You are here because you are one of the fortunate, exclusive, and privileged few to be invited to see the summer adventure Lisa and I shared this past summer, an epic adventure across the American west. Or, possibly your just stumbled across this page. No matter, enjoy!

Note: I am working on this page working as you view. Once this notice is removed, the final version of this page will be here. If you are reading this notice, then the page is not quite complete.

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The site of the Wounded Knee Massacre of December 1890, and the incident of February 1973.

Inside the Wounded Knee Memorial, Pine Ridge, SD

Detail in Wounded Knee Memorial

Wounded Knee Cemetery, Pine Ridge, SD

O, brother where art thou

You can always spot the train engines powered by dried unicorn dung.

I love this sort of stuff

Sunset after the storm warning (softball-sized hail, seek sturdy shelter)

Nebraska or what-not

"I've had pop-outs bigger than you."

End of the day and road in New Mexico

I love the American road

Possibly Clayton, NM

Two trains pass in the night


Up and over the backside toward Phoenix, AZ

It's rather dry here in Arizona

A cactus in Arizona

The Arizona mountains

West running from the haboob, our last day on the road

East, the haboob behind us

Heading into our last sunset for the long final drive home
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© Amorteguy | Home

Below: Lisa's travel blog.
Also GPS data, for all you nerds.

Wounded Knee, SD
Monday 8th
Packed up under clouded skies and got on the road. Headed south through the Black Hills and the Lakota Indian Reservation. Came upon a small Episcopal church with a group from Denver helping to scrap and repaint the wooden church. We stopped and spent some time talking with the people there and taking pictures of the ministry. Met some very interesting people both from the Lakota tribe and from St. Anne's in Denver CO. After we headed to Wounded Knee. On our way down a gravel hill from a cemetery my foot slipped out from under me and despite Tony's heroic attempt to stop my fall I landed on the ground. I spilled my very cold soda I was holding, twisted my ankle, put a bruise the size of a half dollar on my leg and scraped up my toes some. Wounded leg at Wounded Knee. Wouldn't be a vacation if I didn't hurt myself. We stopped for pizza and planned out the rest of our days on the road. Planned to get to the south of Nebraska and camp for the night. As we sat in the restaurant we saw a dark cloud coming our way. We drove south and it began to rain. The wind was blowing so hard we were glad we had the sway bar on our trailer. I suggested we listen to the local radio and see if there was a weather warning. We did find a weather warning and it went something like this... "Severe weather warning for Custer and Shannon county, tennis ball sized hail predicted, get to shelter in a sturdy building as soon as possible and stay away from windows". We had no idea what county we were in so I franticly started looking at the map. We were relieved to know that we were miles south of the weather warning. The rain eventually stopped but we were treated to an amazing electrical storm in Ogallala NE. As we ended the day at our campsite we finally broke down and signed up to become Good Sam members. We are now officially members of the camper world.
Tuesday 9th
Our biggest day for hitting the most states in one day. We started in Nebraska, then Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, and finally New Mexico. It was a long day of driving retracing the steps of the Okies fleeing the dust bowl on their way to CA. We made a few stops one in Colorado for breakfast at a little diner then Boise City, OK to stretch, take some photos and walk around. That little semi-abandon town even smelled like an antique store. After driving through these small towns I have come up with a new TV reality show "Turn the Town Around" Take a piece of history attached to the town and then re-do the down with it's history as the theme. When we finally arrived in Las Vegas New Mexico it was 11:00pm. Tony pulled into a gas station and asked a toothless man where the RV parks were. He directed him to one but said there is a WalMart right next to it and you can stay there "everybody does it" he said. Well let me say when it's 11:00pm and the only RV park in Las Vegas New Mexico looks like a place where murders happen the WalMart parking lot is a welcome site. Brushing our teeth like homeless people and using the bathroom in WalMart we crawled over the two bikes in the trailer and went to sleep.
Country View Campground, Ogallala, NE
Reminiscing about the Dust Bowl, Elkhart, Kansas
Heading to Boise City, OK, the center of the Dust Bowl
On the U.S. 412 west in New Mexico
Through Tonto National Forest, Arizona
Wednesday 10th
Up at 6:00am and hit the road. First stop a long awaited Starbucks. Not many of those around in the Midwest small towns on the back roads. Planned all Interstates from here on out but realized in Northern AZ that I40 was so bad and had construction every mile plus trucks, trucks, trucks. Decided to cut down through a less traveled road to Phoenix. Much prettier. Tony was amazed that this was Arizona. He had never thought of Arizona with these trees and mountains. Found a new bike route he is dying to take a ride on. We hit some weather, rain and hail. Then the temperature dropped 40 degrees in an hour. As we headed into Phoenix we were greeted with two weather warnings. One on the radio saying that there were severe thunderstorms with quarter size hail. We had just passed through that area so in our usual MO we stayed just ahead of the big storm. Then hours later both of us got loud buzz warnings on our phones, from the National Weather Service, about severe dust storms about to hit Phoenix at 7:15pm. This was about 5:30 so we knew if we just kept heading west we would again stay ahead of the storm. Hit a little traffic and a Google map snafu but we managed to get on the 10.
Coming through Phoenix, we were bombarded by weather alerts, fun
Travel Re-Cap
  • 17 Days
  • 13 States
  • 125 hours in the Jeep
  • 5,000 miles
  • $1,500 in gas
  • 10 Campgrounds (claiming wifi)
  • 1 "Good Sam" membership
  • 1 overnight rest stop
  • 1 overnight at Walmart
Good to be home!