[Saturday 1/07 (?): about a mile on hotel treadmill; Tuesday 1/10: 3.7 on Altoona/Pleasant Hill bike trail]
This morning we are up and about. The plan is to get showered, pack up, check out of the hotel, get over to pick up Uncle Donald before 8, then hit the road for a long day’s drive.
We have done this trip a few times. The most direct route is to take 163 to Mt. Pleasant, then 218 south skirting St. Louis, then I-55 down to Hayti, MO where we cross the Mississippi on I-155 to Dyersville, TN, then 412 to Jackson, TN. From there it is US-45 south past Corinth, MS and Tupelo, MS, West Point to Starkville, deliver Uncle Donald to Starkville, then proceed home to Columbus, MS. I believe it is 4-lane divided highway all the way except for Hannibal, MO.
We had a really nice visit in Colorado on the weekend. We visited the folks in Des Moines on Tuesday and Wednesday.
The weather has been chilly but not difficult. Forecast for today includes some rain in the south which I hope will clear out before we arrive. More than once we have encountered storms in SW Tennessee. One time it was an actual tornado in Selmer, TN. I hope we don’t have that this trip.
I like Iowa down to Mt. Pleasant. From there down to St Louis is kind of boring. South of St Louis is interesting topography, down to around Cape Giraudoux. Southern MO is again kind of boring. Western TN is not too bad. We always watch for Green Frog as we go through, and Ada’s General Store north of Selmer. Jackson to Corinth is set at a low speed limit that most people ignore.
We go through the middle of three towns that I can immediately recall: Hannibal, Jackson, TN and West Point, MS. I think everything else is a bypass in some form. Only one big city which is St. Louis.
I had a really nice outdoor run on Tuesday on the bike trail. I parked at the Altoona Campus YWCA parking lot and ran for about 20 minutes south toward Pleasant Hill then returned. It was cold but I had enough clothes on and it was very nice. Treadmill running just isn’t the same.
Thirty years ago I was pretty familiar with the Altoona Campus. My wife worked there and the kids spent a lot of time there. On this occasion I did not go in. It looks about the same.
When I got back from the run I had some struggle trying to get into the car. It just wouldn’t unlock. I had approached from side, and eventually I went around to the back and saw it didn’t have all of the running stickers on the back window: wrong car. The color was right but it was a Nissan, not a Honda and definitely not ours. Small SUVs look very much alike.
Update 01/13/2023: We arrived home in good order late last night. Our total vacation round trip was 2,745 miles according to Google Maps.