We departed Kansas City at 5:30 am and drove an entire hour before finding coffee a few miles east of Topeka. It was a lucky find. After Topeka there was no chance of waking up for 400 miles.
Wiki refers to Kansas topography as having 2 sections — the Osage Plains and Flint Hills — but from I70 where the speed limit is 75 it resembled one long dust prairie of tumbleweed. We barely noticed a steady climb westbound and when the rare internet appeared Wiki explained that we would reach 4000′ at the Colorodo border.
We watched the flat land fill with wheat crops, cattle running free, a traveling hotdog bus, massive windfarms spinning energy arms at high speed — as there was no shortage of wind. Today’s wind blew a gale and we sped along on a beam reach to reach the Colorado border. We experienced our first stress of barely making it to Goodland KS for a juice charge and what a good land it was when at least one out of 6 chargers were working. We pinky swore not to cut the juice so close next time.
We learned how to use the auto pilot feature – well one of us did – in the crosswinds, and the co pilot wasn’t entirely thrilled as the car jerked about to maintain course, but this is day 3 and time to practice swallowing thoughts. When it was my turn to take the helm, I drove Ruby old school, using the pedal to maintain speed, and the wheel to keep her between the lanes. The co pilot worked her Zen too and only shot me a few rockets of stink eye.
The final hour of today’s drive made the monotony of Kansas topography all worthwhile. We departed I70 for Colorado rte 89 — a 2 lane barely traveled road — taking us on a picturesque tour of the last of the high plains with the Rockies growing larger in the backdrop. We arrived in Castle Rock, reenergized by the crisp mountain air and giddy with excitement for the mountains to come.
Peace, love, out
Jane & Jill