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  • Road Trip: Day 28

    Posted on September 25th, 2012 tcorzett No comments

    Today I had the privilege of spending my morning driving on The Mother Road… Route 66! I had originally planned on just hitting a few places, but last night I decided to drive as much of the route as I could.

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    Route 66 is a really nostalgic road to drive, with lots of little houses and old farms… my mom would love this area. Compared to the interstate, Rt66 is much more “natural” and flows with the land… but unfortunately all the modern roads make it quite difficult to navigate. Next time I’ll have to pre-load all of Route 66 into my GPS!

    The first stop for today was Gary’s Gay Parita Sinclair Station. I arrived just before 9am and was a little worried that no one would be around, but Gary was there waiting with coffee and doughnuts! I introduced myself and spent the next hour being guided around the garage/station… I even popped the top off some Route 66 Root Beer and sat on the porch sharing stories from the road. Of course I had to take a bunch of photos too!

    Before departing Gary provided some directions to circumvent the detour up the road. This was really helpful, as I never would have found my way back to Route 66 without his help. He also pointed out how to get to a stretch of the route that’s still the original concrete!

    After navigating through the various sections of Route 66 in Missouri I finally made my way to Kansas! Rt66 only travels 13 miles in Kansas, but there are quite a few great places to visit. The best, by far, was 4 Women on the Route.

    Not only did I see “Tow Tater”, the inspiration for ‘Mater from the movie Cars, I had a great conversation with “Melba the Mouth”.

    After leaving Galena I headed to the Rainbow bridge; the last remaining Marsh arch bridge… built of concrete in 1923.

    I’ve now driven Route 66 in every state that it travels through! When I get home I’m going to have to track down one of the Route 66 postmark maps. I was tempted to get one today, but didn’t want to risk damaging it.

    The remainder of my drive was Kansas; and there’s only one thing I need to say about that… there’s a reason it’s the last state in the mid-west to be filled-in on my map! The only good part was the slalom course through the cones in a construction zone.

    Tomorrow is another long day of driving across flat ground, but I will be making my way towards the mountains of Colorado for a few days of twisty fun!

  • Road Trip: Day 27

    Posted on September 24th, 2012 tcorzett No comments

    For the first day in several days I didn’t have a list of scheduled activities. As a result I set my alarm for an hour later than normal… and even then hit the snooze button at least three times. Despite all of that I was on the road before 10am, ready for several hours of interstate driving.

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    There were no planned stops today, but I found a few places along the way to break-up the interstate driving. The first stops were around Springfield, IL and Route 66. After grabbing some breakfast I headed to Shea’s Gas Station Museum, but unfortunately it was closed today (and every Monday). I also tried to go to the Illinois State Military Museum, to get a photo with a tank, but it too is closed on Monday. With no luck at museums I headed to Linclon’s Tomb… they can’t close that!

    Having driven around and circles for over an hour, I tried to get back on the interstate quickly, but was delayed by some farm vehicles. Only in the mid-West do you have to race a tractor from the stoplights!

    I drove several of these roads last year and it was fun to know where I was for a change. I even recognized the section of Route 66 that was under construction last year (and the crazy detour I took). The new bridge looks great!

    Most of the route today was quite boring, but I did spend some time looking at the scenery. Besides all the billboards for tourist traps, one of the most prominent features of the landscape are the large water towers in each town. This is something that’s completely lacking from where I’m from, so it’s kinda cool to see.

    Speaking of water… this whole area is extremely dry this year. At first I thought the brown corn fields was due to being two weeks later in the season, but it’s a result of a record breaking drought. It’s strange to see knee-high corn fields half harvested, soy fields completely untouched, etc.

    Last night I decided that there was no reason for me to stop at the Gateway Arch in St. Louis again this year, but on the road I called an audible and stopped anyhow.

    I know I took an identical photo to last year, but it’s such a nice view! Just for those who want a different angle of the arch… click here.

    I made the drive through St. Louis and headed down towards my hotel for the night. For the most part I stayed on the interstate, but there were a few times I pulled-off to enjoy a stretch of Route 66. I even found a nice Rt66 Antique shop where I bought a map of Kansas… I don’t want to miss like I did last year!

    Tomorrow I’ll finally drive the short stretch of Route 66 in Kansas. This will also fill-in Kansas on my state map… hopefully ending the “what do you have against Kansas” questions.

  • GONE 2012: Day 3

    Posted on September 23rd, 2012 tcorzett No comments

    Today was the final day of GONE 2012. With a morning awards banquet I didn’t get a chance to sleep-in before having to pack-up the hotel. I didn’t have time to eat breakfast, but I did get everything into the trunk of the G8… which is no small feat.

    At the banquet the awards for the various car show and drag racing classes, as well as raffle prizes, were handed-out. I didn’t win anything, but it was great seeing all the winners. Before long the morning was over and it was time for everyone to head their separate ways.

    I planned on making the trip to Pontiac again this year, and hoped there were be a big turnout like last year, but only 3 cars (including myself) made the trip. I’m sure we made for a strange group… a car from California, one from Oaklahoma, and another from New York. Since I was the only one of the group that had been to Pontiac before (and since I had the route in my GPS) I lead the cruise.

    This year we arrived at the Pontiac-Oakland Auto Museum with enough time to really explore.

    After visiting the Pontiac Museum, and getting some more swag, we headed to the alley behind the Route 66 Museum to take some photos of the G8’s with the various murals.

    Far too quickly it was time to say goodbye to the other G8 owners and start my trip home. The next few days I’ll be driving across the mid-west on route to the mountains of Colorado. I have to get to Kansas and drive my last section of Route 66 (filling-in my state map), but after that I might be making some modifications to my planned route. It will take me another two weeks to get back to California, but I’m headed that direction.

  • Pre-GoatRun: Day 3

    Posted on September 26th, 2011 tcorzett No comments

    Today was a short day of driving, and as a result I stayed up late last night watching Metallica perform “Live” (via the web) at Rock in Rio. They played a really great set, so despite wanting to get some extra sleep… I just couldn’t do it.

    In the morning I slept-in until almost 10am and slowly got myself out of the hotel. After a quick breakfast I headed-out onto the road.

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    Yesterday I talked about how Oklahoma didn’t seem like a “Dust Bowl” type of place… well, today I saw how it could happen. As I drove West the grass started to thin, and at one point for as far as I could see was nothing but red dirt. I guess all the farmers have harvested their crops, because I couldn’t see anything growing.

    Today I spent much of my time on or around Route 66. Since I didn’t have a long drive, when I saw a Rt66 Museum I pulled over to check it out. The first museum I stopped at was the Oklahoma State Route 66 Museum. For the most part I just wanted to get some swag, but there were all sorts of other cool things to see.

    Shortly after walking through the Oklahoma Rt66 Museum, I saw a sign on the interstate for the National Route 66 Museum… so again, I pulled-over to check it out.

    After browsing the gift shops at both museums, I was able to get all sorts of great swag. I also realized that I’ve driven the G8 on Rt66 in each state that it travels through… except Kansas. It’s too late to go back to drive there now, but I’m going to have to do it on the way to GONE next year.

    Unfortunately, when visiting the National Rt66 Museum my car started to act-up with “Limp Mode” again. On the way down “Main Street USA”, just as I was debating stopping for gas, I saw the dreaded “Power Reduced” logo on my dash. Then, just as I had pulled back onto I-40, the car again went into limp mode. Fortunately I was able to exit the freeway without incident, as I just can’t seem to get the car to want to return to normal while driving. Thankfully these were the only times it happened today, and I was able to cover some ground.

    Driving through Texas has so far been a fun experience. The first thing I noticed was that there are different speed limits for day and night. I really like the idea, but I don’t think that it would ever work in California.

    Texas seems like a very flat place with lots of land. A nice thing about flat land is that is allows one “room to stretch your legs”. After letting a windmill ahead of me through a construction zone… yes, a nacelle for a large windmill… I found myself with an empty stretch of I-40.

    So, I’m on a straight, flat, empty stretch of I-40… and what should come-up along side me? A Mustang! At this point I was compelled to put my foot to the floor, but I knew better than to do that. If I had the stock hood on my car I might have given it a go, but I don’t want to be the first person to test the speed rating for the Maverick Man CF hood! It was also fortunate that I didn’t try anything, as just around the corner there were three LEO’s on the side of the interstate searching a pick-up truck!

    I pulled into Amarillo and found my hotel, but since the sun was still up decided to head over to the Cadillac Ranch for some fun. For those who doesn’t know… the Cadillac Ranch is NOT a whore house!

    The Cadillac Ranch is a series of cars buried in the ground, and is a classic piece of Route 66 history. People are even encouraged to visit the site and “tag” the cars… unfortunately I didn’t happen to bring and spray paint (‘Doh!). Maybe I can find a rattle-can and swing by tomorrow before continuing my drive West.

  • Post-GONE: Day 1

    Posted on September 12th, 2011 tcorzett No comments

    Today was a short day relative to the rest of my trip, thanks to not driving all the way back to Bettendorf, IA. I figured it was a good day to recuperate after the exciting weekend, so stuck mostly to the interstate.

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    While I was driving down the interstate, I noticed a two-lane road that was running along side. After seeing a sign that said it was Route 66, I knew I needed to exit and drive along the Mother Road.

    The drive on Rt66 didn’t last very long, as there was bridge construction that sent me off on a detour. After another stretch of Rt66 I had to take another detour around a freeway off-ramp. At that point I decided that while it would be nice to drive along Rt66, it would drive me crazy to have to make detours every few miles… so got back onto the interstate for the rest of the drive into St. Louis.

    At this point the road was quite boring, so I tuned the XM Radio to some tunes from the 90’s. Some might not be able to imagine me singing along to the songs of the 80’s… I’m sure they would be shocked to find me singing and “dancing” along with such hits as I’m Too Sexy by Right Said Fred! While my Rest Reminder was turned-off, I figured this was a sign that I needed to stop and stretch my legs.

    Before crossing St. Louis I needed to play tourist for a little while. I looked at the maps last night and plotted a route to a scenic spot to get some photos of the Gateway Arch.

    While taking the photos I left my car running (just in case someone didn’t like me parking on the sidewalk) and I heard it start running really funny… like it had a misfire. I figured it was another P2135 DTC resulting in the car entering “limp mode”, and I was correct. Just like last time everything cleared on its own… but I’m starting to get a little more concerned about this code. Fortunately, I’m only receiving it when sitting at idle.

    Being the middle of the day, I figured I’d take a shot at trying to get a little closer to the Gateway Arch. After driving across the river and along the river I was able to briefly stop my car and jump out for some quick photos.

    The rest of the drive to the hotel was across the urban areas of St. Louis, and it reminded me just how nice the rest of my drive has been so far.

    Tomorrow is a long day of driving twisty roads, so I’m heading to bed early. Hopefully the weather holds-off so I can drive the last bit of roads… but as of now there is a 40% chance of “Scattered Thunderstorms” in the evening.

  • National G8 Meet: Day 3

    Posted on September 11th, 2011 tcorzett No comments

    Today was the final day of the 2011 National G8 Meet, and the only scheduled activity for the day was an awards ceremony. After yesterday’s late night, it felt good to sleep in a little.

    Before getting to the hotel I stopped-off at a parking “garage” next to the hotel to take a few photos.

    I headed over to the hotel for the awards ceremony, but first had to take advantage of a unique photo opportunity…

    The scene with the (Liquid) Red, (Hot) White, and (Stryker) Blue G8’s… and the flag at half mast… really stood-out. I think everyone who came into the parking lot was taking photos and feeling very American.

    At the awards ceremony, various awards were given out in several classes (V6, GT, GXP… Stock, Mild-Mod, Modified) for the car show and for the quickest cars from drag racing. Raffle prizes were also given out from the various event sponsors (SOLO Performance, Adam’s Polishes, Squash Performance, WasSlow, Performance Car Web, etc.). I didn’t win anything, but it was still fun.

    After the awards it was time to say goodbye to everyone. It was rough having the event end so quickly, but I guess that’s what next year is for!

    Some of the guys I hung-out with in Chicago were headed home via Pontiac, IL. I was really disappointed that I missed their previous trips there, so wasn’t going to miss it this time! The group headed-out together in a tight, quickly moving, convoy. I’ve not been around a car club for a while, and I wasn’t use to the formation driving. We were only going the speed limit, but it seemed like we were going 90 miles-an-hour!

    When we reached the Pontiac we quickly headed to the Route 66 mural for some awesome photos!

    After photos we even had time to checkout the Pontiac-Oakland Auto Museum!

    The museum was really great. They had several rare Pontiac’s and all sorts of historic parts/pieces. One of my favorite things was the display case that housed several DeLorean Pontiac Sales Awards, just like the ones that my Grandfather sent me. After purchasing some swag, we headed next door to an Italian restaurant for dinner. Far too soon, I had to say goodbye to the Chicago boys, as they needed to get home… and I needed to get to my hotel.

    This weekend has been a really great time. It is always fun to hangout and “talk shop” with people who have similar interests. It was even better to see all of the people I talk with all the time online. I really hope that next year I’ll have the ability to make the trip to the 2012 National G8 Meet!