Lincoln Highway Conference 2011 Locator map

Day 1
Staging

Day 2
On Home Turf

Day 3
Mostly Indiana

Day 4
Twainamania

Day 5
Twineamania

Day 6
Thirty-Six Clinched

Day 7
The Bar is Over the Mountain

Day 8
Breaking Camp

Day 9
At Last the Lincoln

Day 10
Dirty in Two States

Day 11
Not Very Lonely

Day 12
A Guided Entrance

Day 13
Car 83, Road 97, Fun 100.

Day 14
The East Tour

Day 15
Seminar Day

Day 16
A Bridge, a Tunnel, and a Subway

Day 17
Half a Canyon

Day 18
Trail's End

Day 19
Starting Down the Coast

Day 20
A Ranch House

Day 21
Cars, Mostly

Day 22
Madonnas += 2

Day 23
Art of All Sorts

Day 24
Some Sixty-Six Joints

Day 25
Wrapping It Up

Postlude - July 6, 2011
I've been home a couple of days now and can provide a brief overview of the trip. The twenty-five days I spent away from home is more than on any previous trip. It was three days longer than the August 2009 trip that clinched the 1928 Lincoln Highway alignment for me. I believe it is also the longest in miles with 6698 showing on the trip odometer when I got home. It took about 252 gallons of gas at prices from $3.199 to $4.399 (average $3.687) to cover those miles. The Forester performed flawlessly and met the goal of getting me places the Corvette never could. It's not as much fun to drive on twisty pavement but it's a lot more fun to drive on rutted dirt. The mileage meter in the car, which reports average MPG in increments of 0.3, showed 27.3 but that was a little high. My calculated average MPG was 26.55 which I thought was pretty good. The best tank was the one that benefited from coming down the west side of the Rockies. It delivered 32.39 MPG. The worst tank was the one that hauled me around San Francisco at 22.33 MPG.

This was almost like five trips in one. The first six days involved following a single United States highway, US 36, from one end to the other. Next were a couple of days camping in a national park and driving assorted roads, including US 40, to reach the road on which the trip was centered, the Lincoln Highway. I touched a little bit of the LH on my ninth day out but really got serious about it on the tenth. This was the day that I drove mostly unpaved roads from near Tooele, Utah, almost to Ely, Nevada. The following eight days would be spent driving on, riding on, or hearing about the Lincoln Highway. The fourth "trip" consisted of three days on the Pacific Coast Highway then I finished up with an expressway run back to Cincinnati. That expressway run was through the Route 66 corridor and I frequently exited at Sixty-Six related spots.

July 3, 2011 (day 23)
Another mostly expressway day started with a pleasant visit with friends in Oklahoma and ended at a recently redone landmark in Missouri.

July 2, 2011 (day 24)
Most of today's miles were on the expressway but I did put in a few miles on Historic Route 66 and I hit several good stops on the road.

July 1, 2011 (day 23)
The day started with a visit to a wonderland that I would have missed without a tip from a friend. Then, after a great meal in Vega, I checked out some more art while visiting a friend in Amarillo then bedded down in a familiar spot in McLean.

June 30, 2011 (day 22)
Kingman to Albuquerque via Seligman and Springerville. Springerville? Yes, Springerville.

June 29, 2011 (day 21)
Routing was a bit haphazard but I did manage to get headed for home after visiting a fantastic car museum and stopping by a big roadside attraction. Apparently there are times when you can't see the bottle trees for the bottle forest.

June 28, 2011 (day 20)
Not much to report today. I ate on the train after stopping by Billy Hearst's old ranch house.

June 27, 2011 (day 19)
The Lincoln Highway portion is done but I've decided to extend the trip just a bit by heading south along the coast.

June 26, 2011 (day 18)
I had breakfast at a "shrine" then finished driving the original Lincoln Highway alignment through Banta and Livermore. A visit with my son ended the day quite nicely.

June 25, 2011 (day 17)
I wimped out and rode rather than drove onto the old Kings Canyon Lincoln Highway alignment. A rockslide stopped us before we'd made it half way and some tricky backing and turning was required. Everyone was disappointed that we didn't get to see the whole thing but no one was hurt and we got ourselves a story.

June 24, 2011 (day 16)
Snow kept us from driving through Transcontinental Railroad Tunnel #6 but it didn't keep us from walking in. And we got to walk all over the Donner Bridge, too.

June 23, 2011 (day 15)
Between hearing about a cross country motorcycle trip and various aspects of the Lincoln Highway, we got to hear an internationally known singer and watch an Edwardian lady undress. The day ended high above the water of Lake Tahoe.

June 22, 2011 (day 14)
We visited a mint, waved at some "ranchers", and ate lunch in Dayton. Then we got our picture taken on the way back.

June 21, 2011 (day 13)
It's a short report on a long bus tour. The highlight was a ride in an 83 year old Ford Model A on 97 year old Lincoln Highway pavement. We passed a bunch of great but unphotographed scenery on the bus.

June 20, 2011 (day 12)
A small group collected at the Overland then, after a delicious Basque breakfast in the hotel dining room, followed our guide to some "secret" places and some special privileges.

June 19, 2011 (day 11)
Compared to yesterday's Ibapah to Ely day ending drive, "The Loneliest Road In America" seemed down right congested between Ely and Fallon.

June 18, 2011 (day 10)
I drove about 180 miles of dirt/gravel road today and am carrying a fair amount of Utah and Nevada real estate on my car. The Subby proved its worth.

June 17, 2011 (day 9)
I reached the end of US 40 and touched the Lincoln Highway for the first time this trip.

June 16, 2011 (day 8)
I saw lots of elk, a few sheep, and a couple thousand cyclists.

June 15, 2011 (day 7)
I took a VERY short & easy hike with a ranger then drove over the mountain and back again.

June 14, 2011 (day 6)
I reached the western end of US 36 today and it's a whole lot different from the other one.

June 13, 2011 (day 5)
Wow! The world's largest ball of twine and the center of the US in one day. It can't get much better.

June 12, 2011 (day 4)
Hannibal, Missouri is all Twain, all the time and the town supplies most of today's photos. But I also found a neat gas station, some concrete roadway, and an overbuilt tombstone.

June 11, 2011 (day 3)
I was guided through Indianapolis by three experts then used another expert's reports to explore some gravel sections of Old Thirty-Six. Oh, and I saved a life before any of that.

June 10, 2011 (day 2)
After driving across most of Ohio I took advantage of some free lodging at my parent's house. I had rain and sun and tiny tasty hamburgers along the way and more tasty ground beef when I got there. Got pictures of several familiar to me landmarks, too.

June 9, 2011 (day 1)
Today just got me to where US-36 begins. I'll actually start driving west on the road tomorrow.

Prelude 2 - May 11, 2011
A little more concrete was poured today. I waited until nearly the last minute to send off my registration but it's in the mail now. I also booked my room for the conference itself. The host hotel is Harrah's Lake Tahoe and a quite reasonable rate is available for rooms there. However, an even more attractive (to cheapskate solo travelers) rate is offered at Harvey's, a sister hotel just across the road and connected by a tunnel. I've reserved four nights, Monday through Thursday, at Harvey's. In order to take advantage of some post-conference tours, I anticipate staying in the area one more night but I'm hoping to spend it at the brewery neighboring place I stumbled onto in 2009.

Prelude 1 - April 28, 2011
Some may recall that the timing of my January trip to San Diego was partly due to the fact that my son who is stationed there would be at sea at the time of the 2011 Lincoln Highway Association Conference at Lake Tahoe. The grand idea of visiting him and his San Franciscan brother after the conference was scrapped and I flew to Dan Diego to visit the sailor and his family before he went off cruising for several months. That made the LHA conference a little less attractive but not much. Just the expert guided bus tours would have been enough to tempt me and there is a whole lot more. I never stopped wanting to go.

Even though it has always been desirable it hasn't always seemed feasible. It does at the moment and I'm making plans to go. I've considered many ways to get to Lake Tahoe including dashing there on I-80 or flying into Reno. I also studied taking a more northerly route and stopping by Mount Rushmore and Yellowstone. A route I gave a lot of thought to was one passing through Amarillo, Texas. This year's National Route 66 Festival is being held there the week before the LHA conference. It would be possible to attend both events as I did last year through the mileage increment would be a lot more this year than last. In the end, however, all of these ideas lost out to a more direct route and clinching a US highway on the way.

Darke County, Ohio, is where my first screams were heard. US-36 is one of only two US highways that pass through my birth county and one of just a handful with an end point in my birth state. I've driven most of it east of the middle of Illinois but none west of there. So I'm going to start this trip by driving the entire length of US-36 from eastern Ohio to Rocky Mountain National Park just west of Denver. I'll pick up US-40 near the park and follow that to Salt Lake City. Then, if the stars align and the weather cooperates, I hope to trace the old Lincoln Highway alignment through Fisher Pass, around Dugway, and into Ibapah. US-50 would get me the rest of the way to Lake Tahoe but the Nevada LHA chapter has a pre-conference tour planned heading to the conference from Fallon on older alignments. The tour's starting point is the 1908 Overland Hotel so I'll likely spend the night there and have a beer or two with Mark and the "dead people" then move on with the locals in the morning.

Current plans call for the end of the conference to mark the end of the trip. I have reason to be back in Ohio so I'll be heading for the nearest I-80 ramp and high tailing it home. Probably. I still have the route I worked out for connecting San Francisco with San Diego and taking a southerly route home. If things change, I could see myself following some or all of it. That is not, however, the plan.

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