Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Day 1, Tuesday May 6, 2014

Left at 0620 (that's 6:20 AM to y'all), taking our usual route to Ottawa KS (MO-13, BB, SW200, MO-131, MO-2, KS-68) and picked up US-35 south to Emporia.  Then it's US-50 & KS-150 west through the Flint Hills, then US-56 to Lyons.  Lyons was our first destination stop, for a visit to the Coronado - Quivira Museum.  Over the years, a number of native sites had been uncovered, with some excavated.  Looked more related to the Puebloan cultures than to the Mound Builders further east. Then, enough relics had been found to pretty well prove that Coronado's expedition had spent some time in the area.

The next stop was 160 miles further, at the small town of Sublette.  Not much there except a very good restaurant, the Cattleman's Cafe, which we discovered back in 2002 on our first trip SW.  Sandra was disappointed - they were out of pot roast, but Bill's chicken fried steak was outstanding, as expected (we've also eaten at their location in Liberal).

Another hour or so got us to Guymon, the Holiday Inn Express.  We're settled in our room and planning for tomorrow.  We'll head out tomorrow for Boise City & Clayton, visit the dinosaur trackway at Clayton Lake State Park, then head on back roads across the high plains to Mosquero (murals covered in NM Magazine), Roy, then Canadian River canyon, Wagon Mound and finally Las Vegas NM.

Tid-Bits from Sandra
  • Would you believe Blinker Light Road in Cass County - has a blinker light at MO-2?
  • In Kansas - Cedar Grove Feline Conservatory - a rest home for rather large cats.
  • I-35 crosses Frog Creek at the 184 mile marker - ribbit!
  • First Santa Fe Trail marker at Marion, KS
  • Chisholm Trail is a country road about 15 miles east of McPherson - about due south of Abilene.  Could it be?
  • McPherson is also the home of the Happy Trails Liquor Store, as well as the Gypsy Wagon store (crafts, I think)
  • Then there's Little River, home of the Redskins.  Definitely not P.C.
  • When entering Ellinwood from east or west, we were greeted by a sheaf of wheat - in yellow-painted metal.
  • Larned is home to the Kiowa Kitchen Mexican Restaurant and the Kiowa Kampground.
  • Knisley proudly boasts the Rowdy Ranch (a cafe).  It also has characters painted in the upper windows of a 2-story downtown building.
  • Spearville's team? The Royal Lancers
  • Where would you find a storage tank (probably oil) painted pink w/ polka-dots?  Just south of Sublette on US-83.
  • Who's that girl in the statues entering Liberal on US-54?  Here's a hint - there's a little dog with her, called Toto.

Total miles 509.3, 11 hours from gate to hotel.  Only 19 MPG with the stiff headwind all afternoon.  Travel tip:  If on US-54, buy gas at Tyrone, the first town after you leave Kansas.


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