Note: When Sharon adds comments, they will be in {curly brackets}. [Oops, was in a rush to send this one off and I didn't let Sharon review it. She was upset about it. I promised to let her review all the rest.]

Day 4. Saturday Sep 12, 2009. Salt Lake City to Grand Teton National Park

It's four minutes till six am, and we have a big day of driving, plus lots of scenic miles, according to our driving plan.

[Click to see larger version]

We leave in the dark, and maneuver our way to northbound I-15, which if you stay on, takes you to Idaho Falls. But our plan is to go up the scenic, slow route, then we will come back down, a bit more than a week from now, on I-15, the fast way.

Another plan is for Jerry, our treasurer, to keep track of how much we both spend for sharable items. Whoever is behind buys the next tank of gas or batch of groceries. In Utah, the advertised price is for 85 octane gas, and our truck needs 87, so our cost is about ten cents more than the big come-on-in signs we see from the highways.

Jerry buys this tank, and the tank we just finishd works out to 9.41 mpg. Still no conclusions about the QMI fuel additive, but I'm really liking the 9+ mileages we're getting.

When we get to Brigham City, we will leave I-15 for the side road that goes off to the right, through Montpelier and Soda Springs.

As we approach B-City, the sun starts coming up, and we can see it over the mountains. Gorgeous. Lots of laughing, as we are giddy with all the cool stuff we're going to be seeing over the next week or so. We make our exit, and leave I-15.

We cross the Little Bear River, and both Sharon and Shirley claim they saw Little Bear Bottom. Shirley is complaining about something. Maybe she's praising something. Anyway, I tell her what grandsons Josh and Sieren have been using on each other. "Take your mouth, and shut up!" I don't really want her to be quiet, I just wanted to introduce this new phrase we can practice on each other and on people that annoy us during our trip.

We stop for breakfast at the second lower dam on the Logan River. It's a day use area, and the wind is blowing about 35 mph. It's really whirling. I had a problem in college to convert mph to furlongs per fortnight. I learned unit conversion in that lesson and never forgot it. 35 mph is about 94,000 fpf.

A rest area beside the Logan River, in a windy and windy canyon. Not very scenic looking though, huh?

Mallards in the River, butts up for some

After breakfast and some canyon and river exploration, we head out again. Later, from an overlook, we get our first view of huge Bear Lake, through which the Utah-Idaho border passes.

Shirley and I trade memories of going to the Missouri State Fair and eating fantastic Dole Pineapple Whips (soft ice cream with bits of pipeapple in it) on a 100 degree day with 70% humidity. Great stuff.

Suddenly we find ourselves in a backed up line of vehicles, and can see bicycle riders in the road we want to turn right onto. It's some kind of race. After about ten minutes, we're released to proceed, but share the road with the bikers, so must be doubly careful. We come into Montpelier, and learn that our planned route, straight to Alpine and Jackson is closed for the race. We'll have to take some alternate road.

We dig into our maps and will take the road to Soda Springs, then turn right, joining up with our planned route near Alpine. Sharon calls her son Matt to yell about bike races comandeering the main road to Jackson from here. He's not answering so she yells her message.

Shirley and Jerry stick a pin in a map back at their home for every new state they visit together. So this trip will add Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, and Montana, I think.

We make it up to Soda Springs, pick up some snacks (gummy bears), and turn right, ultimately winding up in Alpine and then Jackson. We find a place to parallel park our rig, about four blocks from the town square.

Shirley, pointing out Wyoming, on our states-we-have-been-to-in-our-trailer map, from our parking spot by the sidewalk.

Making sure we have our credit cards handy, we head for the center of Jackson. Shirley has heard from friends that it's a wonderful place, with lots of shops and restaurants, and she is excited to see it.

I like the bears climbing the signpost. The hungry-looking one seems to be eyeing Shirley and Sharon. Notice that Sharon is keeping Shirley between her and the bears.

And I like this scarf or whatever. "CONFIDENCE is the feeling you have before you really understand the situation."

Several people we have talked to said that they want to visit the Cowboy Bar in Jackson. Here is the roof.

The town square has an angled antler arch on each of the four corners. This is a photo of four tourists, who are hoping that the antler arch doesn't collapse soon. Actually Jerry and I found that at the center of the arch was iron bar, welded to form the general shape. Then the antlers were attached to these, building outward.

This guy's chaps look like they were made out of miniature antlers too. No wonder the horse wants to dump him.

The women pose by a statue of a man and his young son, presumably. More details in the next photo.

/rgwt EW CWET,,, Oops, sorry, my hands somehow shifted left one key each. I should blow the spell checker's binary mind and have it check that.

Here, they are probably pointing to Sharon and Shirley, saying, "Look, tourists with no purchases yet!"

This piece is dedicated to drinkers everywhere. I call it "Three Sheeps to the Wind."

We have some ice cream, make some purchases, so as not to disappoint the pointing statue cowboy and his son and head back to our truck.

We continue on north, passing and noting the turnoff to Moose, where we will be at 8:30 tomorrow morning. Then at 6:15pm, we are set up in our Colter Bay RV Park slot, in Grand Teton National Park, except for levelling.

We enjoy dinner and play a game of Okey, taught to us by Cihan, our Turkish son-in-law. With exactly the same game pieces, you can also play Rummikub, one of Jerry and Shirley's favorites. We discuss what to bring tomorrow. Will it be hot and stifling or cool and breezy in the raft?

Thinking about that, we hit the hay and think about our trip will be tomorrow. I do anyway.

See you in the funny papers.


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