Sunday, September 16 – Really?!

Just as a baby is born pure and with limitless potential, today dawned fresh and with the potential for pleasant travel. Where did we go wrong?

We pulled out of our campground in Moab at 9:00 sharp, pulled out onto southbound US 191, and the travails began. We entered 191 partway up a   l o o o n g   incline so the truck labored to accelerate. We drove several miles before leveling off and the truck dropping into overdrive. I’m sure we burned a gallon of fuel in five minutes.

Then things got interesting. Not long after passing through Bluff, Utah the condition of the road deteriorated dramatically. Apparently the engineer who designed this section of the road is the same person who designed the lasagna noodle. The surface undulations were so severe we had to slow down to 50 mph in order to avoid losing control. For 150 miles the surrounding terrain was a stark mixture of barren, sandy desert interrupted by large, deep canyons and red-brown, sharp-edged plateaus. We had no cell phone signal and miles elapsed between sightings of residences. But, ohhh, those residences. Squat shanties with tires on the roof. TIRES! Radials, I think. It must have been some sort of status symbol as some residences had more tires than others. We’d spot an occasional rodeo arena but clearly the primary sporting activity was beer bottle tossing. Every square yard along the highway was strewn with multiple empty beer bottles.

By the time we reached Interstate 40 I felt as if we’d driven through a 150 mile long landfill. When we stopped and entered the RV, the easy chair by the entry door had migrated almost 3 feet to the doorway. Wow!

We’ll spend tonight in Holbrook, Arizona and begin heading east on Monday.

Note to US 191 in southern Utah and northern Arizona: really?

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