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Showing posts from August 27, 2006

Day 1: Bay Area - Winnemucca, NV

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Saturday 9/2 We plan to get up at 4AM and leave by 6AM – we finally left at around 7AM. The drive to Sacramento was a breeze – no traffic. We had breakfast short after we passed Sacramento. At a stop over at Truckee River, we met a nice couple from New Hampshire who toured the West. We passed Reno and took a little detour to Pyramid Lake. After some 30 miles through the desert, here he was – in it’s entire beauty. The light was good and we could take a great picture from the pyramid on the other side of the lake. We saw a few people fishing but other than that the lake was like untouched – it was wonderful. It was totally silent – no other cars on the road. It is great to listen to silence. After a while we drove along the lake and hit I-80 and after a short stopover in Lovelock and a tour through Nevada’s desert we stopped in Winnemucca’s Red Lion.

Finding places to stay

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We want to stay in rather original places not the big hotels and not on camping ground. And we are not going to do any reservation ahead of time, basically because we don't know when and where we wanted to stay. But we wanted to have at least some options handy. After reviewing the typical travel sites we found BedandBreakfast.com. A marvelous web site with all the very nice B&Bs we wanted. Also here the Internet is a priceless tool. In combination with Google maps we checked little villages around the tour and were able to identify Bed and Breakfast places where we might stay. Right and left off of the main Interstates are gorgeous places. The price levels for 40+ nights are OK and the king of places are exactly what we are looking for. As we travel we will make notes from the places we stood and post our experience for everybody who wants to do a similar trip throughout the USA.

Dry run by satellite

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Touring with Google maps. Now since the first cut of the tour was done, I did a dry run by using Google Maps in Satellite mode. This was a lengthy but fascinating experience. I put the zoom so that I still could easily identify little villages but high up enough to see the surrounding scenery. Most of the time I "flew" in hybrid mode to easily follow the roads. Lot of aha effects: Oh Pyramid lake isn't that far off - let's do a detour. Wow driving through South Dakota is a real stretch. Ahh - now we come into Wisconsin - hey this is a much more dense population than we thought. Didn't realize how close New York is from Philadelphia - we may as well drive up there for a day. Now I see what people mean when they talk about the Blue Mountains in Virginia - but it is a long long windy road. Not sure we can do it on that trip. I can go on and on. But this was one of the most helpful exercises in planning that tour, in particular when I came to the end of the trip in A

A few expiring sites

We haven't seen too many sites who posted their great tours. Here we will put several up as we come across them. A swiss couple touring the world http://www.h-e-eisenring.ch/default.htm