Saturday, October 12, 2013

Oct. 12, 2013

Out of the Ozarks and into the Midwest Plains

Little bit of rain last night.  Not very heavy and over by morning.  Still warm.  Over 60 degrees early this morning.

Further west we headed.  Small detour to go by the home where Laura Ingles Wilder wrote her books.  She wrote about other places in her life but the writing took place in southern Missouri.  No good place to park carbus so we continued on to Springfield and the cheapest gas we have seen the entire trip – $2.95/gal at Sam’s.  Other stations – $2.98.  Wish that could continue further west.


4 lane divided Hwy 60

Not sure I’d drive a buggy on a 65mph road.  Seems to be done a lot though.  Note wear lane from horseshoes.


4 lane divided Hwy 60Springfield, MOHwy 299 (Hwy Rte 66), MO

Characteristic trait of old Route 66.  It follows the contour of the land.  No cuts in banks to level road.

Hwy 266 (Rte 66)P1070613

We stopped for the day in Oswego in the far southeastern corner of Kansas.  Tomorrow, Wichita – again.

Oct. 11, 2013

Headed West Generally

Having revisited Greenville to see the Kitchenaid factory, we headed southwest toward Paducah to visit a spot we (Sue) neglected the first time there.

Twelve miles from Greenville we crossed into Indiana and then drove over the highest point in Indiana called Mt. Hoosier.  A little more pronounced than Mt. Sunflower in Kansas but not much.  From there we drove farm and county roads to south central Indiana and camped.  Next day south on a very rural road to go through French Lick.

one lane county road

Pretty rural – fun!

Basketball fans will recognize that name as the home town of Larry Bird.  Nice medium sized town with two BIG resorts.  VERY big buildings on extensive grounds.

West Badin Springs-Carlsbad of America

French Lick Resort

French Lick Resort continuesFrench Lick Resort


Rest of town looked pretty normal. 

On to larger roads and then south and west to Paducah. 

Ohio River barges with coal

Last time we were here we went to the International Quilt Museum but overlooked visiting a particular quilt fabric store that is almost legendary among serious quilters.  The store does a huge online business.  Look up fabric samples online and order and they send it to you.   Store is huge.  Five or six football fields next to each other huge.  Filled with fabric.  Lots of workers wandering aisles with order forms pulling bolts of fabric to cut from to fill orders but also lots of customers browsing.  There are several waiting areas for husbands to pass the time while wives do their thing.  We got out with only three pieces of fabric.  Another travel bucket list item done.

Hancock's of PaducahHancock's of PaducahSunset in Paducah

Today we drove west.  At one point we crossed two major rivers and were in three different states in less than five minutes.  Then west through southeast Missouri.  Farm land (mostly cotton) giving way to rolling Ozark Mountains.  Very pretty but all green.  No color at all.  People say it is coming though.

Ohio River

Ohio River just before it meets the Mississippi River

Mississippi River MOHighway 60, MO

Great road. Mostly expressway with some interchanges.  Goes all the way across southern Missouri.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Oct. 8, 2013


Leaf peeping is pretty much done.  Trees are mostly green and any color change is usually straight to brown and then fall.

Observations on a couple of Fall staples.  First, there is no shortage of pumpkins in New England and the Northeastern states.  They are everywhere.  Every few miles there are stands or front yards or driveways or farm yards or you pick fields filled with pumpkins for sale.  And stores all have hundreds of them.  In spots, every house has a Thanksgiving display of some sort usually with multiple pumpkins. Makes you wonder what happens to all those that go unsold.  Second, corn field mazes are are also abundant.  In the west, mazes are a special amusement that require months of planning and preparation and are not very prevalent.  Here, corn fields are a way of life.  Hundreds and hundreds of square miles of them.  No big deal to make a maze.  There may be 3,4, or 5 mazes within a few miles of each other around a town.

Today is a layover day.  Camped in fairgrounds in Greenville, Indiana.  Reason for layover is to visit Kitchenaid Experience (their name for factory affiliated retail store, also has museum) and Kitchenaid factory tour.  All the Kitchenaid stand mixers and many of the hand mixers made in the Greenville plant.  Last year over two million stand mixers were made here.  Neat tour.  Right on floor walking down paint, production, and assembly lines dodging forklifts and hustling workers.  Everything in one huge building.  Very noisy so those on tour are given headsets so guide can explain various sights.  Except for the gross casting of the case everything is done in this building even to the point of assembling gear shafts and making whip beaters from wire and raw metal blanks.   Very little robotics.  None in assembly.  Empty case starts at one end of line and goes by about ten people each adding and testing parts.  At the end of the line the finished stand mixer and all accessories roll off the line all boxed and sealed and ready to be shipped for sale.  Didn’t time time from start to finish but it was not very long.

Fun to see the busy and efficient plant operation and picked up a few tips on proper use of Kitchenaid mixer to get best baking results.

No pictures allowed on assembly floor and forgot to take pictures of small museum area at start of tour so that’s all folks.

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Kitchenaid retail store in downtown Greenville.

Camped at the Fairgrounds, Greenville, OH

There are several stables at the fairgrounds that train trotters.

Some pictures from tomorrow Smile which has nothing worth blogging about.

This one’s for Christina and Roland

Columbus, IN


Fall in Indiana

summer is over--looks abandoned!Scenic Hwy 135, IN

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Oct. 6, 2013

Back to Ohio

Through western Pennsylvania and back into eastern Ohio Amish country. 

Very little color change seen today.  Maybe 10-20%.  Lots of green leaves and a few bare trees.  Some trees react early to any temp change but most trees are waiting for good temp drop in this area which may not be for a while.

Hermitage, PAYoungstown, OH, Halloween TreesHwy 62W in OhioBuggy brake lights and blinkers!Meeting Day?

Oct. 5, 2013

Leaf Peep VIII

Forgot to mention yesterday that we saw a maple sap farm.  We drove by a grove of Sugar Maples with a grid of hoses running through it and smaller tubes leading from trees to the hose grid.  Before I realized what we were seeing we were by it so no picture.

Drove Hwy 6 across the top of Pennsylvania today.  First 50 miles was in fog, pretty thick at times.  Trees were colorful but muted by the fog.  As we got further west there was still lots of color but also many trees that had not started to turn at all and at the other extreme there were lots of bare branches and even bare trees.  Different pattern of temperatures in this part of the country I guess. 

We stopped at a post office in a small town along the way to send a gift package.  Post offices mot affected by shutdown.

Tonight we are in a National Forest campground that is going to close Monday morning because of the govt. shutdown.  Lucky for us they got to stay open a few extra days.  Beautiful spot with lots of great camp spots (now mostly empty).

PA Rte 6Smethport ChurchPA Rte 6, Mt. Jewell muralForest Service campground, near Warren, PA, Allegheny RiverForest Service campground, near Warren, PAForest Service campground, near Warren, PA