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Prairies to Intermountain West; Snowy Layover; Sagebrush to Sand

Prairies to Intermountain West; Snowy Layover; Sagebrush to Sand

Old Apr 11, 19, 12:47 am
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Prairies to Intermountain West; Snowy Layover; Sagebrush to Sand

Tour of Duty 7th March 2019 to 18th March 2019
Part I: 7th March The Flights Out


I got word about a couple of trips and I was considering a trip from Fairmont, West Virginia to El Reno, Oklahoma. That would have entailed a flight to PIT or perhaps CMH or some other airport within rental car distance of Fairmont. The itinerary I had in mind from LAX to PIT was DL going from LAX to JFK on a A-330 jumbo jet connecting to a regional jet from JFK to PIT. However the good fare on that itinerary from LAX to PIT disappeared. I became aware of several trucks in Independence, Kansas going west with some going to Utah and some going to the Northwest. I found a good fare on WN from SNA to TUL so I did not have to mess with the zoo known as LAX. I got confirmed on a trip from Independence, Kansas to Draper, Utah and got the air ticket on WN booked.

Thursday the 7th of March I got transport to SNA. I checked in and my bags weighed 41.4 and 45.1lbs. I cleared security and opted out and was patted down. My boot bag received additional screening. Total time from beginning of checkin to clear of security was 21 minutes.

Southwest #1992 SNA-DEN B-737-700 Boarding Pass B21
Seat 23A Cruising altitude 39,000 feet Estimated flying time 1:35, actual 1:37
Depart: Gate 19 Scheduled 13h55, actual 14h18 Taxi: 7 minutes
Arrive: Gate C28 Scheduled 17h10, actual 17h08 Taxi: 6 minutes


The plane was late arriving from PHX. We boarded via jetway. The plane was almost full. Pushback was 23 minutes late followed by takeoff to the west. I saw Newport Beach and Fashion Island before we went overwater at 0:02. We turned south then east but due to cloud cover blocking view below I was unsure of the timing or location of landfall. I saw Interstate 5 as we went over San Juan Capistrano at 0:05 and looking north I saw the El Toro "Y" and the former El Toro MCAS. We crossed Interstate 215 at 0:05 and I saw part of Perris, CA then I saw the Hemet/San Jacinto area through breaks in the clouds. I saw Mt. San Jacinto, Palm Springs and PSP at 0:11. I saw Indio and Coachella at 0:14. We started to turn north at 0:15 and I saw Chiriaco Summit as we crossed Interstate at 0:15. We crossed California 62 at 0:19. I got pretzels at 0:23. At 0:25 cruise was announced and seatbelt sign went off. Is aw Interstate 40, Colorado River as well as Needles, CA and Bullhead City, AZ at 0:27 then I saw Laughlin, NV. We crossed Interstate 40 at 0:28 and I saw Kingman, AZ. At 0:29 I felt some bumps and seatbelt sign went on.

Seatbelt sign went off at 0:40 and I saw the Grand Canyon. At 0:43 I got cup of soda. At 0:45 I saw the Painted Desert and at 0:47 I saw Lake Powell to the north. At 0:52 I saw what looked to be Kayenta, AZ and at 0:53 I saw Monument Valley. Descent was announced at 1:13 and seatbelt sign went on at 1:16 and it was announced there were scattered clouds at DEN. At 1:27 I saw downtown Denver to the distance. We crossed Interstate 70 at 1:34 and landed south to north and arrived at gate 2 minutes early. We deplaned via jetway.

Due to the long layover I took the train to Terminal A and was disappointed to find Schlotzsky's Deli was no longer there. Instead I got a Beef Brisket Sandwich with Provolone Cheese and Horseradish as well as Chips and a bottle of soda for evening rations from Denver Central Market. Then I learned my connecting flight to TUL was delayed as it was late leaving LAS and SLC. I phoned up the rental car company at TUL to let them know as they were scheduled to close at 23h00. I was told to go straight to the booth in the garage to get the keys then deal with reclaiming checked bags. I went ahead and booked a room in Tulsa at hotel that had airport shuttle that operated late to cover myself in the event that the flight was delayed enough that the rental car place at TUL was closed by the time I arrived. Then I took the train back to Terminal C and I headed for my gate to wait.

Southwest #767 DEN-TUL B-737-700 Boarding Pass A52
Seat 2A Cruising altitude 33,000 feet Estimated flying time 1:06, actual 1:07
Depart: Gate C41 Scheduled 20h05, actual 20h39 Taxi: 11 minutes
Arrive: Gate B5 Scheduled 2h40, actual 23h02 Taxi: 4 minutes
Reclaim checked bags 13-15 minutes after arrival


As mentioned earlier the plane was late arriving due to earlier delays. We boarded via jetway. The plane was not totally full. It was announced that winds were out of the east with good visibility and 48F at TUL. Pushback was 34 minutes late. Takeoff was to the east. I got pretzels at 0:35. I got cup of soda at 0:39. I felt descent begin at 0:42 and descent was announced at 0:44. Seatbelt sign stayed on the whole flight and I felt some rough air during descent. At 0:56 I saw some precipitation during descent and felt some real good bumps. We circled around and landed south to north and arrived at gate 22 minutes late. We deplaned via jetway. I headed to the rental car booth in the garage only to be told to reclaim my bags as they were not going to close for awhile. After I got my bags I went back to the garage and got into the rental car. I stopped at a QT to purchase some hydration supplies. Then I headed to the hotel where I had a room booked and I saw lightning as I approached the room and there was a little bit of rain enroute. I spent the night in Tulsa, OK.
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Old Apr 11, 19, 12:58 am
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WN1992 SNA-DEN 7th March 2019

Some pictures of Southwest Airlines flight from Orange County John Wayne Airport to Denver International Airport.

At gate SNA

Newport Back Bay

Newport Beach

Another look at Newport Beach going overwater

Palm Springs and vicinity

The Desert

Colorado River

Colorado River

Service

Northern Arizona

San Luis Valley

Snow down below

During descent

Farther into descent

Denver metro area during approach

At the gate DEN
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Old Apr 11, 19, 3:39 am
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Stuck Seatbelt; High Winds; Time Change

Part II: 8th March to 12th March

Friday was mostly cloudy to start. I headed north on US75 in the rental car and stopped in Bartlesville, OK and had midday rations at Freddy's Steakburgers. I stopped in Caney, KS and took some pictures. I reached the location of the shipper and loaded my gear into the truck that was bound for Draper, UT. I tried in vain to find where the fuel cap was. I turned in the rental car after getting unleaded for 2.259$ per gallon in Independence, KS. I did inspection for the truck bound for Draper, UT and finally found the fuel cap. I thought I was good to go but alas when I tried to fasten my seatbelt I discovered that the seatbelt was not properly installed. That is a big deal as I need to wear the seatbelt properly. I notified dispatch of the problem and was told to switch to another just like the one I was going to take but the new truck was bound for Ogden, UT instead of Draper, UT.

Trip: Independence, KS to Ogden, UT 1,149 paid miles
Make: 2019 Isuzu
Model: Box Truck
Transmission: Automatic
Route: US75 to US400 to US77 to Kansas 254 to Kansas 196 to Interstate 135 to Interstate 70 to Interstate 270 to Interstate 25 to Interstate 80 to Interstate 84 to Utah 53
Highest elevation: 8,640 at Sherman Summit Interstate 80 about 10 miles east of Laramie, WY
Highest diesel price USA: 3.159$ at Flying J Rock Springs, WY
Lowest diesel price USA: 2.679$ at PW Watkins, CO
Permits required: none


I immediately went to truck stop and filled up the tank with diesel. The tank did not hold a lot of fuel; filling the tank was going to happen frequently this trip. I stopped in Fredonia, KS where I had evening rations. It started raining before I reached Fredonia. I continued to El Dorado, KS where I spent a rainy night.

Saturday the rain quit but the wind cranked up and winds were at least 30mph with gusts well into the 40's mph with some gusts 55mph or higher in some area. I had a difficult drive from El Dorado, KS to Newton, KS and shut down there at Newell Truck Plaza for about three hours until the winds started to ease off. I had midday rations during the time I was shut down. After I got started I got to Salina, KS where I took on fuel and I felt a wind chill there. I had evening rations at McDonald's in Russell, KS before continuing to WaKeeney, KS where I reset my watch one hour later and spent the night.

Sunday I woke up to the first day of Daylight Savings Time. The church I would have attended had its services early enough that the services would have been over or nearly over by the time it was legal for me to drive due to federal hours of service constraints and the change to Daylight Savings Time. So I took some pictures of downtown WaKeeney before heading west on Interstate 70. I stopped in Oakley where I took a few pictures and made a pit stop. Then I continued to Colby, KS where I took on fuel. I stopped in Kanorado, KS and took a couple pictures before entering Colorado. I stopped and took some pictures of downtown Limon, CO and saw the sunset there before continuing to Watkins, CO where I took on fuel. I continued up to Fort Collins, CO where I had late evening rations and I spent the night there.

Monday I continued north on Interstate 25 and stopped at the Port of Entry in Cheyenne, WY where an officer informed me I did not need a Trip Permit, probably due to the weight of the vehicle. I started my run west on Interstate 80 and took on fuel and had midday rations in Laramie, WY before continuing west. I took on fuel for the last time in Rock Springs, WY and stopped and had late evening rations and spent a cold night in Green River, WY.

Tuesday I heard a blizzard was forecast for the Denver area as well as northern Colorado and part of Wyoming. There were trucks in the Denver area, Greeley, CO and Cheyenne, WY available but those area were in the area that ultimately got hit by the blizzard. It was 12F with freezing fog when I got started. I got out of the fog and made a pit stop in Evanston, WY. I made other stops in Echo, UT and Morgan, UT before making delivery in Ogden, UT. The weather was fair in Ogden. I got transport down to Salt Lake City, UT and had evening rations and rain started. I spent the night in Salt Lake City, UT.

Last edited by Loose Cannon; Apr 11, 19 at 1:32 pm
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Old Apr 11, 19, 1:34 pm
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My ride from Independence, Kansas to Ogden, Utah

Not the most comfortable ride but at least this truck was not governed to 55mph.
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Old Apr 11, 19, 1:37 pm
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Caney, Kansas

Some pictures of Caney, Kansas a little dot on the map in southeast Kansas










Someone in Caney, Kansas likes the Pittsburgh Steelers.
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Old Apr 11, 19, 1:40 pm
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WaKeeney, Kansas

Some pictures of WaKeeney, Kansas











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Old Apr 11, 19, 1:46 pm
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Miscellaneous pictures of Kansas

Other pictures of Kansas taken this trip

Oakley, Kansas

Oakley, Kansas

Oakley, Kansas

Oakley, Kansas

Oakley, Kansas

Oakley, Kansas

Kanorado, Kansas

Kanorado, Kansas
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Old Apr 11, 19, 1:51 pm
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Limon, Colorado

Some pictures of Limon, Colorado















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Old Apr 11, 19, 2:09 pm
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Snowy Layover; Sneaking In Some Sightseeing

Tour of Duty 7th March 2019 to 18th March 2019
Part III: 13th March to 14th March


Wednesday the 13th of March I spent a snowy day in Salt Lake City. Though it was snowy in Salt Lake City the weather was nowhere near as bad as it was in Denver and Cheyenne. I opted to accept a trip from Boise, ID to Santa Ana, CA. There was some question if that truck was going to go to Petaluma, CA or Santa Ana. However the truck was not going to be ready until Friday the 15th of March. So I extended my stay at hotel for another day and a one-way rental car was booked for me from Salt Lake City, UT to BOI. I went across the street and had midday rations at Burger King. Otherwise I stayed in my room and I phoned up Domino's Pizza for evening rations and had their Ultimate Pepperoni.

Thursday came and the weather was still cold but no snowfall. After a wait I was picked up and taken to get rental car. After I got in the rental car I went to the State Capitol in Salt Lake City where I took some pictures. Then I headed to downtown Ogden, UT where I took more pictures. Just outside Ogden the speed limit changed to 75 then just past Brigham City the speed limit changed to 80mph so I was able to make better time. The speed limit remained at 80mph for all vehicles in Utah and was 80mph for cars and 70mph for trucks in Idaho all the way to Boise where it went to 65mph. I took a nap at the rest area just inside Idaho before continuing to Shoshone Falls in the Twin Falls area where I took more pictures at dusk then I took a few pictures of downtown Twin Falls, ID. I was going to eat at a BBQ place in Twin Falls but they closed early so I had evening rations at Sizzler. Afterward I continued to Boise and I spent the night in Boise, ID.
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Old Apr 11, 19, 2:12 pm
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Salt Lake City, Utah

Some pictures of Salt Lake City













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Old Apr 11, 19, 2:16 pm
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Ogden, Utah

Some pictures of Ogden, Utah

















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Old Apr 11, 19, 2:24 pm
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Twin Falls, Idaho and Vicinity including Shoshone Falls and the Snake River

Some pictures of the Twin Falls area

















sunset 14th March 2019 Twin Falls, Idaho




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Old Apr 12, 19, 2:09 am
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Truck Repair; Police Encounter

Tour of Duty 7th March 2019 to 18th March 2019
Part IV: 15th March to 18th March


I awoke to fair weather in Boise on Friday the 15th of March. I instantly regretted not filling up the fuel tank on the rental car the night before as prices for regular unleaded jumped 10 cents a gallon overnight. I filled up for 2.399$ per gallon which is still low compared to California. I got a text specifying what spot in the airport parking lot the truck was staged. I turned in the rental car and searched for the designated space and found the truck. I located the keys and loaded my gear and did the safety inspection and alas I found that NONE of the rear lights were working. The rear hazard lights and turn signals were not working either, nor was the rear brake light working. I searched for the fuse box but did not find any blown fuse. I notified dispatch and was given an address of a dealer to go to to get the problem fixed. I made a notation of the problem on my log in the event I got stopped and I opened the driver's side window and used hand signals in lieu of turn signals.

Trip: Boise, ID to Santa Ana (Irvine), CA 889 paid miles
Make: 2017 Chevrolet
Model: Box Truck
Transmission: Automatic
Route: Interstate 84 to Idaho 55 to US95 to Interstate 80 to US95 to Nevada 360 to US6 to US395 (US395 Business to go to Ridgecrest) to Interstate 15 to California 91 to California 55
Maximum elevation: 7,167 feet Montgomery Pass US6 8 miles east of the CA/NV state line
Highest unleaded price USA: 3.499$ per gallon at Mobil Santa Ana, CA
Lowest unleaded price USA: 2.399$ per gallon at Chevron Marsing, ID and Flying J Winnemucca, NV
Permits Required: ID and NV Trip Permits


The problem with the truck was fixed and after payment was processed I was released with the truck. I opted to shut down early in Nampa, ID as there was no suitable lodging between Nampa, ID and Winnemucca, NV. There were places in Jordan Valley, OR and McDermitt, NV but they could not guarantee me a smoke free room. I shut down and had evening rations at Denny's before calling it a night in Nampa, ID.

Saturday I got underway for real and the weather was fair with temperatures in the 50's and maybe 60'sF. I took on fuel in Marsing, ID then made pit stop in Jordan Valley, OR where I took some pictures. I saw the speed limit on much of US95 in Oregon changed from 55mph for all vehicles to 70mph for cars and 65mph for trucks. I made another pit stop in McDermitt, NV and took a few more pictures. The speed limit on much of US95 in Nevada was 70mph for all vehicles. I stopped in Winnemucca and took numerous pictures of that city. Then I had evening rations at The Pig before taking on fuel. I hopped on westbound Interstate 80 and once I left the Winnemucca area the speed limit changed from 75mph to 80mph for all vehicles. I made a pit stop in Lovelock then was on the 80 for a short while longer before heading south on US95 into Fallon. I spent the night in Fallon, NV.

Sunday the 17th of March was St-Patrick's Day so I remembered to wear an orange shirt. I got an earlier start than usual and pulled into Hawthorne, NV and I attended the morning service at Macedonia Baptist Church in Hawthorne, NV. The message was on Romans 12. The church was sparsely attended with something like a total of 14 people in the building. Afterward I took some pictures of Hawthorne, NV and I took on fuel before continuing my journey. I reached the highest point of my journey at Montgomery Pass eight miles east of the California state line. I entered California and went through Benton in Mono County before crossing into Inyo County. I made pit stop in Bishop, CA then I took some pictures of that city and took on fuel. Very shortly after I left Bishop heading south on US395 a unit from the California Highway Patrol pulled me over. When I picked up the truck I taped over the licence plate that was in the rear and mounted the transporter licence plate that the company issued me in the front window. Apparently the officer only saw the taped over plate in the rear. I explained that I was using the transporter tag that the company issued me and showed him paperwork. The officer let me go and did not give me a ticket but he said the licence plate should be mounted on the outside of the vehicle and not in the front windshield. I continued south and much though not all of US395 was twinned from Bishop to the Kern County line. I stopped and took some pictures of Independence, CA and I did the same in Lone Pine, CA before heading south into Kern County. I shut down, had evening rations and spent the night in Ridgecrest, CA.

Monday the 18th of March I phoned up Safety to report the police encounter I had the day before. Safety told me that my placards and plate should normally be mounted on the outside so I went to Home Depot and got some blue Painter's Tape to tape the placards to the side doors of the truck without paint damageand some plastic zip ties to secure the licence plate to the front grille as well as something to snip the zip ties once a trip is concluded. I took some pictures of Ridgecrest then I headed south on US395. There was a delay at Kramer Junction (intersection of US395 and California 58) due to construction as California 58 is being upgraded. South of Kramer Junction there was more construction and a further delay as there was a flagger. I stopped for late midday rations in Hesperia, CA and got specific information from the customer about dropping the truck. I took on fuel then continued down the Cajon Pass. I took on fuel one last time in Santa Ana and headed to the parking lot which was actually in Irvine where I dropped off the truck at dusk. I got transport home to end this tour of duty.

My ride from Boise, Idaho to Santa Ana (Irvine), California

Puckerbrush, Nevada
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Old Apr 12, 19, 2:13 am
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Jordan Valley, Oregon

Some pictures of Jordan Valley, Oregon











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Old Apr 12, 19, 2:16 am
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Winnemucca, Nevada

Some pictures of Winnemucca, Nevada









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