Randye and Candace: Goin' West

Day 6

Okay, I admit it. I started to feel the effects of miles of driving and days of sightseeing on Saturday. Candace didn't say anything, but I suspect she was feeling it, too, certainly by Sunday morning. (One day the reason might become funny enough to tell.) We got off to a late start, but we still wanted to put as much mileage in that day as reasonable so that we could make back to Grinnell by Monday evening. The good thing about the delay was that I got to see the first two sets of the Federer/Nadal Wimbledon finals match live on television.

We put only one stop on our trip that day: the Badlands National Park just outside Wall. We headed down Hwy. 240, which looped through a portion of the Badlands, only to turn around when we learned that this was another site where one had to pay just to drive through. Once back on I-90, we did stop for a couple of photos of me in my cowboy hat with a beautiful vista in the background.

Badlands Park Sign
Randye at Badlands

Iowa Map Day One

With that, the marathon began, stopping only once for a gas, food and bathroom break. This is the driving mode I'm far more accustomed to instead of the more relaxed stop-and-start mode we'd practiced to that point, so I handled the trip well. Candace did, too, by sleeping most of the way.

Still, I managed to take in the scenery. The flat stretches where I could see for miles on either side of the interstate were more like what I had expected of the Midwest plains than most of the hillier Iowa rural landscape. We didn't get to drive into Sioux Falls, where we might have taken the opportunity to see the falls that gave the city its name, because road construction diverted us onto a southern route on Hwy. 19 into Sioux City.

What a difference a day makes!! The holiday weekend was over for most folks, so we had no problem finding a non-smoking room with two queen-sized beds but without the holiday-inflated prices.

If all went well, we would hit the home stretch in the morning.

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