returning home

At Colby, Kansas tonight

Parts of old US 24 are still maintained by the Colorado Department of Transportation, including a short segment east of Burlington apparatntly to access a CDOT maintaince facility. It’s hard to tell what part of the frontage road is state maintained, as the pavement is consistant, if a little rough, all the way to the border. In addition, westbound traffic on old 24 encounters a “Welcome to Colorful Colorado” sign.

There’s an old rodeside park on old 24 between Burlington and the border. All that’s there is a fire pit, which has a plaque dedicated to the Blue Star Memorial Highway

vacation notes

two days on the road…. we’ve made it to the Quality Suites at Evergreen Parkway on the west side of Denver.

When fueling up in Wakeeney, the Phillips 66 station offered 89 Octane gas as regular, and 90 for midgrade. Ethanol fuel, anyone.

At Goodland, several members of a car colector club happened to be travelling back to Denver. The group dove around in classic Fords and Mercurys.

Roadtrip report from Joplin

I left Lawrence after 7:15, and headed to Kansas City to “find” Ben. I found him, and he informed me that personal issues had come up (namly, relatives in and the baby is trying to come out early.

I leave the metro by heading down the “Freeway of Love,” AKA US 69. Four-laning of the highway is complete from Louisburg to 359th. Both Carriageways have been paved with concrete. South of 359th to the Linn County Line, work includes grade-seperations of the current intersections. In Linn County, it appears to have insufficient ROW to four-lane, this probably means KDOT will have to purchase it (I’m presuming this *has* been financed)

I turned east on K-52/MO 52 to catch US 71. I caught a pic of a bridge on Miami Creek west of Butler.

I also made a run around through Neosho to kill a little time (I was at the US 71/I-44 interchage at 11, I said noon 🙂 I took MO 59 south to where it re-joins US 71 at Neosho, turned back north to Joplin

I arrived at Pizza by Stout at Noon. The younger David Backlin was already there, and the Older David soon followed. We all tried to get separate tables, but we settled for a corner booth while we talked shop and had the Pizza Buffet. After Lunch, Young David and his friend departed, but not before I got a couple pics outside. I cleared a spot for the older David in the shotgun spot in my Buick.

We went west on MO 66 out to Galena. We made a loop around on a bypassed section of 66, then turned south of 26 (along the entire route) and turned east onto an older stretch of 166 that returned us to Joplin, to which we turned north of 71 toward Carthage.

In Carthage, we headed north on MO 571 (stopping at a roundabout for
pics) to MO 96 which, besides being an extension of “Hockaday’s number,” is also part of the old route 66. Along the route (on the old pavement) are three truss bridges: One single-span thru truss, one three-span pony, and one single-span pony.

At Halltown, we turned south on the “lettered roads” to MO 174, which itself was a part of 166. 174 heads due west until 44 cuts across. From there, 166 ran along what is now I-44, and portions of the old
route are still used as “outer road.” We followed the old two-lane 166 route until it ended, then rejoined 44 back to Joplin.

After bringing David back to his vehicle, I headed back to Galena. There was a interesting sign for the Will Rogers Turnpike (!) just south of the 26/66 intersection. I got a pic of the Will Rogers sign, along with the north end of K-26 (got the south end on the “first pass”), then headed for US 69A at Riverton. From Riverton, I turned north to the US 69/160/400 Junction, and turned east on Old K-96 back to Missouri. I
turned north at 43 to a lettered road, then headed back to 71. There was a pony truss bridge on the route I was on, but didn’t get a pic. I took 71 north to the Grandview Triangle, then 435 and K-10 home

Total miles on the Buick: 595, with good mileage 🙂

New radio in the PA

Last friday, I purchaed a new Car Stereo for the Park Avenue

Today, I had it installed.

I had a little bit of time to listen to the new stereo (both the radio and CD). It sounds good.

Now, I just neet to find a place for the old unit…

egged

The Harvard Road egg squad did their random attack and struck my car. I had to go over to the car wash (in sub-freezing conditions) and get it off.

Damage to the paint appears to be minimal. The paint came off in a couple of small spots around where one of the eggs struck on the rear quarter panel. I had other spots on the doors and roof before the egging, and was already planning a session with the touch up paint….

Manual Adjustment

On my way home from Union Station (see yesterday’s blog entry), I jiggled around with the wire running between the swith and the cruise control on the PA. I set the cruise at 65, and lo and behold, the darn thing finally works (and I located the “Cruise” light that turns on with the cruise control)

One less thing to worry about. I think I got most of the “kinks” out of this car. The paint job still needs to be touched up.

The holy grail

I would call this the Holy Grail of Roadmaps….

Sunday, I was going through the Kansas Map collection at the TR Smith map library and found what I would call the “holy grail” of Roadmaps…. A 1918 Hockaday roadmap of Kansas. In the days before numbered routed, F.W. Hockaday marked the major trails with direction signs with the distincitve red “H,” conviently centering on his home of Wichita, where he had a auto repair dealership. When the state numbered their highways, they allowed Hockaday to give one of them a number — He chose the number 96

working out the new PA’s bugs

As of Monday, I have officially held title to a 94 Buick Park Avenue. Howeve, that doesn’t mean I’ve ran into little problems

First off (and this isn’t too bad), the previous owners were smokers. I literally washed the seatbelts and the front seats, and applied generous amounts of a Febreze knock-off to the upholstery.

Today brought rain, and a starteling revelation: The winshield leaks badly. It’s likely due to a bad install. Fortuantely, my family runs a glass shop here, and my dad is in charge of the automotive side. He will re-seat the winshield tommorow. He also has a new one on order in case of a problem.

BTW, the previous owners lived in Wichita, so we didn’t have anything to do with the Winshield’s shoddy installation.

New Ride

I put this under “highways” cause it does have a periphrial over-the-road theme…. it’s also partially why I haven’t updated the highways site recently…..

My current car, a 91 Buick Regal, has had enough problems with it that it has not been deemed worthy of long range travel (my last major road trip was to Des Moines in January 2004) Also, the Regal technically belongs to my parents, even though I have been responsible for acutally paying for Taxes and Insurance.

This week, we found a ’94 Buick Park Avenue with 92,000 miles on it. We called to take a look. It was in good enough shape, and the person selling it accepted our offer. I have all the paperwork to sign the title over, but I wasn’t able to get it done on Friday, which means I’ll be driving the regal for a “swan song” weeked.

I’ve never been the kind to go for anything flashy, nor to I care for the handling and the truck-like mileage of an SUV, so the more traditional Large Sedan like the Park Avenue probably fits me better, and I don’t mind that “granny car” stigma.

In fact, my brother currently drives a 91 Park Ave. that origionally belonged to my grandmother. I’m considering doing a photo shoot with the two cars sometime in the future, possibly along with my mom’s ’98 Town Car (a.k.a “The Limo,” as a local limo service uses similar Town Cars for airport shuttles.)