Below is the itinerary, bold is completed...notes about a particular stop are made here and may be referenced in a separate blog posting.
A quick layover after getting a late start from DC and spending some extra time in an amazing state, West Virginia !
The Creation Museum. This was always our starting point and after three years of trying to get on this journey in some form, we finally made it to this effort. What I take from this display of truth? Well, you know we are all on a journey and we have our beliefs. Science is on theirs too ! Good folks trying to figure things out. They have their starting point and Christians have theirs. There is a GREAT display of an archaelogical dig in the museum....with two scientists brushing away dirt from a fossil. One was a creationist the other an evolutionst. They were working side by side, different starting points in their thoughts, same goal. Understanding. The display showed the ability to be working side by side with respect.
Mt Vernon, IL
A brief stay to get organized, and our first Jucing on the road ! Barb juicing aqay ! Kale, Bok Choy, Beets and who knows what else, in our new Breville 800 Juicer. Getting into a routine of juicing every third day, making enough to take with us in the cooler.
Our "Egg" (hitch storage container), was attacked at the hotel by some thugs who thought that somehow it belonged to us. Off to Wallyworld for another lock Nothing stolen and the
St Louis, MO
What a fun city. We didn't spend much time here, however seeing the home of the Cardinals MLB inside the city has reaffirmed how NYC blew it by not rebuilding Shea or Yankee stadium in Manhattan over the west side rail yards. St. Louis has a buzz going on and part of it is that there is a hub of life right there, you don't have to go far and its a part of the folks lives. Citbank Stadium and Yankee Stadium are about as far from the city life as you can get and they are destinations. You go there to see the games, in places like St Louis, (and otheres like Boston and Baltimore), the park is part of the city and the lives of the people. HUGE difference.
The arch? The Mississippi? Great fun to see the gateway to the west.
Kansas City, MO
Our first KOA stayover in our new lives, welcomed by a wonderful KOA known as Kansas City East. Good family oriented folks running this place with everything we needed to get into this journey. Kuddos to STEVE from Houston for sharing his live with us over marshmallows over our first open fire.
What can be said about the International House of Prayer in KC? Fantastic folks all around, Anna made great friendships and saw the PASSION of young prayer warriors. We bumped into a good friend, Steve Burke after a good message from Mike Bickle about the restoration in friendships. A separate topic for sure, but suffice it to say that if you have a harm against you, and you are waiting for it to be resolved by way of apology to YOU from THEM, you may want to rethink your processes spriritually. Your role may be greater than you think.
Colorado Springs, CO
Pikes peak, one of the mountains above 14,000 ft, and the cog railway....the views from the top are stunning and the town at the bottom full of life, (manitou springs).
if you ever need tires, the folks at BIG O TIRE both in Colo Springs / Fountain AND Thomas at the Pueblo location are awesome folks who deserve your business.
On our last day we said goodbye to our 'next door cabin friends' Gabe and headed out for one of the most AMAZING places in America. The Great Sands National Park in southern Colorado. Words cannot describe coming upon a 30 sq mile dunefield at the base of a mountain range......seriously, DUNES 750 feet high.....surreal may be the best word.
Another surprise as we pressed on the journey from Great Sands to Durango. LOTS of straight roads moving west with circular farm after circular farms, roads as straight as you can see, then finally across the Rio Grande and through the mountains once again.......but who know our 'mountain pass' would be at 11,000 feet. Seriously, I thought most passes offered some respite from altitude, but not WOLF CREEK, we actually were higher than the ski resort at one point, wondering if we would in fact rise into the 'above the treeline' area and yep, there we were. VW Touareg V6 was working hard and then 4th gear all the way down.
Exiting the mountains we found the little town of Pagosa Springs, sulpher and all. The ride then offered a view of Chimney Rock, our first taste of desert 'painted landscape' kind of stuff and it was fun ! After a long day we pulled up into a beautify KOA, in Durango CO and quickly met some new forever friends, Doug a full time RV and KOA work kamper from Mesa and The Marais' from Redlands CA who shared their VERY unique car top tent from Howling Moon. Very simple, very slick. They are on a 4,500 mile journey and we had much in common !
A busy and long day started with a journey to a desolate and barren place: 4 corners. The only place in the USA where you can stand in four states at once. That's about it.....lots of pictures and the monument itself is very well done but there is nothing else and you are 40+ miles from anywhere else.
A plan change brought us to Monument Valley, one of the most stunning places around. It is on the border with Utah and is also quite desolate but there are some things to do to use time wisely in addition to trying to fathom the beauty of the area. The canyon road is great, though your car's suspension may think otherwise.
Heading east from here and using mostly inner Tribal roads we traversed NE Arizona to get to an off the beaten path national monument: The Canyon de Chellly. The long dusty drive across the desert is full of beauty along with the dust and the entry point to the monument is on the easter side of a town called Chinle which doesn't offer a pleasant picture and is far from a welcoming site. The South Rim Road into the National Monument brings you toward a few outlooks where the Canyon can be enjoyed. We met a few Navajo women who were selling items alont the parking areas and had the opportunity to share a few stories about in many ways the native American's are closer to understanding who we as Christian's know as The Holy Spirit. They know it as the Great Spirit and its this reverence for such a force in their lives that made the American Indian a part of Rich Mullin's music ministry.
Back to the canyon, in many places you can see the ruins of the pueblo people who were visited by Spanish explorers. These cliff dwellings in themselves are remarkable. This canyon in particular is stunning because of all the 'flows' of dirt/rock that look alot like lava fields in Hawai'i, though they are red and not black.
Holbrook, AZ (rt 66 and petrified forest)
Grand Canyon, AZ
Las Vegas, NV, (hoover dam in particular)
St George, UT
Salt Lake City UT
Big Sky, MT
Twin Falls, ID
Carson City, NV and South Lake Tahoe
Odometer currently reads 6,088 miles travelled and it has been a pleasure seeing that this country is filled with GREAT AND AWESOME people. They are true and willing to talk, they are faithful to their beliefs.Kona, HI