Family Summer Vacation to the East Coast

Title: Anderson Family Summer Vacation 2003
Point of Departure: Saint Louis Missouri
Destination: Myrtle Beach South Carolina
Purpose: Family Summer Vacation
States: Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennesse
Duration: 10 days
Vehicle: 2002 Toyota Sienna
Odometer: Start: 25,651 End: 28,210
Distance: 2,558 statute miles (round trip)

Trip Diary: Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5 | Day 6 | Day 7 | Day 8 | Day 9 | Day 10 |
Photos: Beth's Place | 25th Reunion | Cadillac Ranch | Petrified Forest NP | Grand Canyon NP | Four Corners | Arches NP | Mount Evans | Uncle Dave's

Day 1 - Friday 08/08/2003
Travel day from Webster Groves MO to Wichita KS.
We left Webster Groves, Missouri and drove to the Odessa Outlet Mall near Kansas City. We shopped at the Gap, had lunch at Wendy's and headed to Wichita, KS about 12:15pm. We had promised Beth that we would be to her place by 4:00pm. We stopped at Emporia for gas and a bathroom break. We traveled down I-35 to Emporia, caught the Kansas Turnpike to Eldorado KS, then motored west on 254 to the northwest part of Wichita. As we parked on Beth's driveway and turned the car off, I glanced at my wristwatch: it read 4:00pm to the second. It was an uneventful trip. The mileage from our house to Beth's was 450.2.

Day 2 - Saturday 08/09/2003
Visit Wichita, Travel to Winfield KS
We had breakfast with Beth and just hung out for a while. Grandpa had come to Wichita for out-patient surgery and arrived at Beth's around noon with a Subway sandwich that he was unable to eat because his face and mouth were so numb. We convinced Grandpa to leave his car for MAry to drive and he raod to Winfield with us in the van. That also meant he had to see Monsters Inc. with us at the Palace Movie Theatre that afternoon. He was a good sport and only got scared a couple times at the movie. Very good movie that we all enjoyed. After the movie we traveled Winfield to Grandma's and Grandpa's house (52 miles).

Day 3 - Sunday 08/10/2003
Visit Winfield KS, 25th High School Reunion
Jan and Gene stopped by late morning to say hi to Grandma and Grandpa. They were pleased to see Jan and Gene. For lunch we had a class picnic at Island Park. We stopped by the Burger Station on the way down to get carry-out. Love those chili-cheese burgers.

A few more classmates showed up and visited. The girls played at the playground in between brief periods of rain.

Day 4 - Monday 08/11/2003
Travel day, Winfield KS to Albuquerque NM.

Our longest travel day of the trip. We left Winfield about 6:30am and stopped in Oklahoma City OK for breakfast at a Waffle House. We stopped for gas in Shamrock Texas, then drove on to Amarillo, to Stanley Marsh's Cadillac Ranch. It's not everyday that you see vintage 1960's Cadillac automobiles buried in an empty field just off the Interstate. We had lunch at a nearby truckstop that had a combo Subway/A & W resturant. I bought a Rand McNally midsize delux road atlas that has a nice spiral edge and very convient size.

Day 5 - Tuesday 08/12/2003
Shop Albuquerque NM, Gallup NM, Visit Pertriefied Forest, Travel to Grand Canyon NP.
Mary got up early and visited the jewelry store while the girls and I slept in. The store was very nice and she purchased some supplies for her bead business. We ate a continental breakfast and left Albuquerque about 11am. We stopped at a historic old bridge Route 66 bridge and took a couple pictures. On the way back to the car we saw some neat looking lizards.

Day 6 - Wednesday 08/13/2003
Visit Grand Canyon NP day 1.

We ate breakfast at the hotel as our room came with a continental breakfast. Afterward we drove a couple miles north to the entrance to the Grand Canyon where we paid the $20 admission fee. We continued north for a few more miles and came upon Mathers Point. We jumped out of the van, ran over to the edge and starting taking pictures. Katie went a little nuts and used up half her disposable camera in a matter of minutes before being coached by her parents to pace herself. We drove around the Grand Canyon Village and found a place to park - several lots are available.

Day 7 - Thursday 08/14/2003
Visit Grand Canyon NP day 2.

Hiking the South Kaibab Trail: We were up early this day so Mary and the girls could drop me off at the South Kaibab trail head. I tried to talk Kelly and/or Katie into going with me but they had had enough with Bright Angel hike the day before. At 7am a Ranger was leading a 1.5 mile hike down to Cedar Ridge. This hike is advertised as the most popular day hike in the park. You're not allowed to drive from Highway 64 to Yaki Point where the trial starts so the girls dropped me off and I hiked about .25 mile to the trailhead where a small crowd had gathered. I decided the group of 30 was going to move slower than I wanted so I started down the trail ahead of them. It was a nice cool morning. I enjoyed this hike more than the Bright Angel trail. About half way down to Cedar Ridge is a scenic spot called Ooh Aah Point. This trail is advertised as having little shade which really isn't true. I was in the shade about 80% of the time. I'm sure time of day was a factor. I really enjoyed the hike and made it down in about 55 minutes.

Day 8 - Friday 08/15/2003
Travel day from Grand Canyon AZ to Moab UT, visit Four Corners, Hole in the Rock.
We left Tusayan about 8am and drove back through the Grand Canyon and out the east exit and on to Tuba where we stopped for a bathroom break and snacks. About 45 minutes into this drive Kelly remembered that she hat forgotten her disposal camera on the table in the resturant at the hotel. We decided to push on and Mary called the hotel about the camera. We continued across the large Navajo Nation Indian Reservation to a little town called Teec Nos Pos Arizona, population 300, where we used the bathroom and had lunch of hot dogs and Indian fry bread. We drove another 4 miles to Four Corners and paid $2 each to enter. Four Corners is the only point in the United States common to Four State corners. I remember being there as a kid about 30 years ago. We took turns taking pictures of each other, then walked around the stalls at the perimeter and looked at the goods the Indians were selling.

Day 9 - Saturday 08/16/2003
Visit Arches NP, Travel to Vail CO.

We cose to stay in Moab because of its close proximty to Arches National Park and I-70. We had no idea what a hip and happening place it was (is). There is a lot going in the Moab area as it is a jumping off point for Arches National Park, Canyonlands National Park, hiking, biking, rafting etc. Lots of outdoor activities. We had breakfast, finished packing, loaded the van and left for Arches NP about 8:10am.

Day 10 - Sunday 08/17/2003
Travel day from Vail CO to WaKeeney KS, visit Dillon CO and Mt Evans.

If we had more time:

Happy Trails.

Trip Diary: Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5 | Day 6 | Day 7 | Day 8 | Day 9 | Day 10 |
Photos: Beth's Place | 25th Reunion | Cadillac Ranch | Petrified Forest NP | Grand Canyon NP | Four Corners | Arches NP | Mount Evans | Uncle Dave's

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