After doing the pre-run check on The Rover prior to leaving The Puddle in Kansas, the host paid me a visit. I guess the camping around “The Racetrack” was free, and the host encouraged me to stay 4-5 days to “enjoy the place”. He was genuinely disappointed to hear I would be driving off within minutes. Nice guy, somewhere in his 80’s, and I sort of felt bad dissing his park, but it went away as I tried to check the rear diff fluid level and not get stuck by broken glass.
When I started up again, it was still 88 degs and by the time I hit Stockton, KS it had dropped down to 77, but The Rover ran well.
I met up with two whitetails on Hwy 183 with a death wish. I should have nailed one with each wing, but the high beams allowed me to stop in time and the deer simply blinked at me in the bright lights. I kept going until I approached Kearney and I-80, where I pulled over for the rest of the night.
The trek across Nebraska & Iowa went easily in the drastically cooler air. I did hit a cross-headwind in NE that kept me from being able to use the overdrive which drove my mileage down to 11. In general however, it varied from 12-14, which is what it did the previous year. Still… Disappointing & not what I’m looking for.
West of Des Moines, I man came up to me while getting gas and asked where in Alaska I was from. When I told him, he said he had lived in Valdez. Then he went on to ask me if I knew several people up in Alaska, and was taken aback when I claimed to know none of them. I then confessed that “I was a bit misanthropic,” which only confused him further, but he continued to talk to me.