Heading West – the beginning

den_linda_leaving_2015It started out all flat and good. We gathered maps and sight-seeing books, packed the car and hit the road about 8:30 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 1, headed toward Chicago to pick up 94 then 90.

The cityscape there is beautiful but traffic leaves a lot to be desired. Seemed like it took us forever to get through the congested area and on to some open roads.

chicago_2015We didn’t get nearly as far as we thought we would that first day, stopping for the night in East Madison, Wisconsin. We always pull in early for the night if we’re near a place that has hotels and after pushing through all that traffic we both needed a break.

margarita_time_Roadhouse_wisconsinMy reward for the day on the road is usually a nice, cold margarita and this one was perfect! I don’t travel freeways when I travel throughout Michigan, but on this trip we needed to use freeways and I don’t always handle that well.

Travels through Wisconsin and Minnesota were pretty uneventful, but the scenery is so very pretty. Rolling hills and crisp, clean farm lands. We seen numerous wind farms along the way and were always surprised when we would come across even more.

We pushed on to Mitchell, South Dakota to stop at the Corn Palace. It’s changed a lot on the inside since our last trip there over 10 years ago. The exterior changes each year and is always spectacular to see. It’s amazing to realize the exterior design is made up of corn – lots of corn!

corn_palace_2015Ran into this guy across the street from the Corn Palace. Couldn’t resist having the picture taken.

indian_corn_palaceOnce back on the road heading toward Sturgis traffic started to increase. Even though we were well over 150 miles from Sturgis (where the motorcyle rally was preparing to start) we were finding it hard to find availability at hotels and after stopping for lunch traffic really picked up. We decided to head South to I-80. I picked an exit and we ended up on gravel road for about 1/2 hour before picking up a two-lane highway (83) that would take to I-80 and into Nebraska, 200 and some odd miles later. Backroads travels are my favorites so I was a little sorry when we finally ran into 80 and headed toward Cheyenne.

The end of day four brought us to Laramie for the night. We love to eat where the locals eat so was directed to Altitude. A short drive from the hotel and a quick walk from the public lot near a railroad station where beautiful flowers welcomed guests into the city.

flowers_in_bloomThis unique restaurant and brewery grows its own herbs on the outside of their building that are used in their food preparations. Our dinner was fantastic and the dessert menu changes monthly so we had to try the August Lemon Parfait. So yummy! Murals adorned several buildings and this one of a tree bicycling was so cute – he looked like he was really having fun.

altitude_restaurant_collageTo follow along on our road trip, jump on over to my facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/linda.rootneff

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