Category Archives: Road Trip

The Great Eclipse Failure of ’17! – Uno

You might recall that back in August of 2017 there was a solar eclipse in the United States for the first time in decades. Or at least a really long time.

It cut a swath through Iowa, but in Iowa you couldn’t see the totality. It was only something like 85%. And if you are satisfied with an 85% solar eclipse, you aren’t living life to its fullest. Let it sink in and do better.

The totality was cutting through parts of Kansas and Missouri. I have some kinfolk in the area where the totality was to happen. My big city cousin Sarah was even going to come home from New York with her beau Tim to see the totality.

We made a plan to get together and watch the eclipse together. She did some research and we determined a park on the Missouri River in Saint Joseph, Missouri would be the best place to watch it. The totality was at its longest there. Plus, Saint Joseph was considered one of the top ten places to watch the eclipse because of the length of the totality and the fact that it hardly ever rains in Saint Joseph in August. People do research on such things.

Jesse and I took a couple days off to come down to see the eclipse. Another one of my cousins, Jordan and his wife Erin graciously allowed us to stay in their tall basement for the night.

We left Boone at something like 4 in the morning because I didn’t want to miss the eclipse because we were stuck in eclipse traffic. I also didn’t want to fight other people for a spot to see the eclipse. We were going to have our spot carved out a good 4 hours before the eclipse started.

We were successful. We beat the traffic and we secured a spot of real estate next to the Mighty Mo. Then it started to rain. Then rain some more. We didn’t get to “see” the totality. It was covered by clouds, for the most part. However, we did get to experience it. The temperature does drop like 10 degree. Everywhere you look in all 360 degrees looks like a sunset.

I didn’t get the picture that I wanted, but I still got an amazing experience. With some amazing people. Including my Uncle Mike and cousin Adam and his daughter Florence.

Here are some pictures from the failure:


Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

Solar Eclipse - 2017

I’m already making plans for the eclipse in 2024. It cuts across Paducah, Kentucky. I have some kinfolk that live near there!

Franconia: Part III

Today I bring you the final collection of images from my trip to the Franconia Sculpture Garden with Bethany, Dae Hee, and Nora.

Don’t be sad. I’m sure I will return there again in the future. I’ve even been in contact with Bethany about it already.

I also think that I will plan on visiting the Minnesota State Fair next year as well.

Here is the balance of the Franconia images:


Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

I didn’t get many pictures of the sculptures at the end of our tour because I planned poorly and ran out of battery power. My bad for underestimating the sheer awesomeness of Franconia!

Franconia: Part II

One photo from last week’s WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE came in late, but I thought I would share it anyways.

The picture below was submitted by Logan. It was taken at Vinton’s fireworks competition.


WEEK 154 - COMPETITION - LOGAN KAHLER

I didn’t know such a thing existed, but it does. I might have to check it out next year.

+++++++

Time to answer the question I left you with in last Tuesday’s blog.

Going back to my trip to the Franconia Sculpture Garden with Bethany, Dae Hee, and Nora from back in August of 2017:


Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

I only have 3 car payments left. While it isn’t a ton of money that I will be not have to lay out every month, I have spent it over and over and over in my head. One of those things i think about buying is a piece of art for the yard. I think that lizard would like great in my yard.

There is one more collection of photos from Franconia next Tuesday.

Franconia: Part 1

In what feels like forever ago, but was actually only a year ago I went up to the “bold” North to visit Bethany, Dae Hee and Nora. One of those days we headed towards the Wisconsin border and visited a sculpture park called Franconia.

It was about an hour drive from Burnsville, but it was 100% worth it. I think it is my favorite sculpture park that I have ever visited.

Here are some pictures:


Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia
I love this sign on many levels.

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

Franconia

I know what you’re thinking:

“In that last picture, is that a penis sculpture?”

I guess you’ll have to wait until the next time we visit Franconia to find out!

Beale Street

This collection of Beale Street images is the last of my photos from my trip to Memphis with Jesse and Russell to watch Iowa State in the Liberty Bowl.

I didn’t have overwhelming expectations for Memphis, but it ended up being one of my favorite cities I have ever visited.

If I would have to rank my 3 favorite cities to visit it would be as follows:

1. New York City
2. Minneapolis
3. Memphis

Honorable Mentions to Nashville and San Antonio.

My least favorite cities to visit:

1. Omaha – dirty town with nothing in it, except an animal prison.
2. Las Vegas – White Trash Mecca.
3. Chicago – It isn’t that there isn’t anything in Chicago, it is that it is impossible to get anywhere in Chicago.

Understand, I haven’t been to a ton of cities in my lifetime. I’m not a city person. I’m not a patient enough person to live in a city. Plus, I need nature. I prefer cities that have great food, great music, and interesting history.

Here are a metric ton of Beale Street pictures. A street with great food. Great music. Interesting history.


Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

Beale Street

In case I haven’t mentioned it lately. I’m really excited for Iowa State’s season to start. Also, I need to travel somewhere soon. I really haven’t went anywhere this summer besides the mission trip.

But where to go… Where to go…

Liberty. Rally. Pep.

More from the 2017 backlog. These pictures are from the Iowa State Liberty Bowl Pep Rally I attended with Russell and Jesse.

It was a great event, but since I was already filled with pep, I did a lap around the Memphis Redbirds stadium taking some photos.

It was a beautiful December in Memphis. I only wish that some of that warmth could have been saved for the next day.


Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

Liberty Bowl Pep Rally

John Walters started the pep rally by saying, “And they said a football team couldn’t fill a baseball stadium.” I’ll give you time, if you don’t get the joke.

I’m 99% sure that I’m going to make a road trip to watch Iowa State play Kansas in early November. If anybody is interested in joining me in a Cyclone takeover of Lawrence, let me know so we can start making plans.

Hopefully Iowa State lives up to expectations and there is another bowl game to attend this year. One in Phoenix would be nice!

If not, the Final Four is in Minneapolis this season and the Iowa State basketball team is loaded with talent!

Maquoketa Caves State Park: Chapter 3

REMINDER

It is once again time for me (and by me, I mean you guys) to pick out my photos to enter in the Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest. Once again, I am going to leave it up to a popular vote.

The Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest allows you to enter up to 6 photos.

There are 4 Categories:

1. Nature
2. Photojournalism
3. Photoshop Enhanced
4. Hidden Treasures of Boone County.

I have selected 60 images for you to consider. To simplify things, I have split the 60 photos into 6 sets of 10. If you wish to exercise your enfranchisement, clicking on the link below will take you to Poll #1. Vote for one of those pictures and then move onto the next poll, until you have voted in all six polls.

The winner of EACH poll will be entered into the Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest.

Click on the link below to start voting:

Pufferbilly Days Photo Contest Nominees

Voting will end at midnight, August 8.

+++++++

This is the final collection of photos from my road trip to Maquoketa Caves State Park with Willy and Jay. All the way back in July of 2017.

It was a great road trip and I want to go on another road trip here in the near future. Just need to find a crew. Hmmmm…

Any ways, here are the balance of caves pictures


Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

Maquoketa Caves Road Trip

I can’t endorse Maquoketa Caves State Park enough. Although when you go on a Saturday in the summer, that place is beyond packed!

Union Grove State Park

On the same day that I drove to Decorah to check out their waterfall, I stopped at Union Grave State Park to see their waterfall.

I don’t actually think it counts as a waterfall though. It is a spillway, that some how consistently shows up on the list of Iowa waterfall. Actually if you look at most of the waterfalls on that list, many of them are spillways, which I don’t consider to be waterfalls. Although, I guess you could argue that water does indeed fall at these locations.

It is still pretty, from a distance.

Here are some pictures:


Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Union Grove State Park

Still jonesin’ for an Iowa road trip. Need to get that on the calendar.