DAY 1 - Carmel Valley, California to Park City, Utah

Well as I start out on this cross country trek, it hits me that this is over 3000 miles. The longest trip I have done up until now was about 450 miles when I would go to Maine. Thos trips normally consisted of one days worth of driving, some down time and one day back. This is about seven days of over 450 miles a row!

California weather is a little chilly to start out. At least the locals tell me it is cold. I slept the night before with the window open, it may have gotten down into the 40's but it didn't bother me. Today isn't bothering me either, the sun is out and I have a lot of ground to cover. As I leave my mother in law and head to my father in law's house I begin to ponder the possibilities. The possibilities of what and where. Where will I go? What will I see?

Starting out at 10:00am local time (1:00pm eastern time)

Laguna Seca raceway is about 10 minutes from the mother in law's place. Every time I went by during my last visit I thought how cool it would be to see. I am not a big fan of the road racing circuit, but as a fan of motor sports, it is easily recognized at one of the most famous race tracks in the United States if not the world. Monterey County Parks Department runs and maintains the facility. There was a considerable amount of activity the day I was there including the Skip Barber Racing School and what appeared to be some sort of tire and equipment testing. I have video which I will try and add at some point. Hopefully I can scrounge up the cash to do the driving school next time I am out there. Twisty roads at high speed can be fun in most cases.

I wanted to stop and have lunch with my father in law since I would be so close. He lives in Los Altos, Ca. I found out that one of the guys I work with that has relatives living about 3 blocks away. Small world, huh? First picture is countryside near Watsonville, Santa Clara County. On the way up Highway 101 I saw a Harley Davidson dealership so I stopped to check it out. It was the House of Thunder in Morgan Hill, Ca. I had the pleasure of seeing a gentleman get the final instruction on his new ride before he left the dealership. Then off to Los Altos to see Doug.

The next leg of the trip takes me toward South Lake Tahoe. My wife has talked about Tahoe as the most beautiful place in the world since the day I have met her. So I need to get there before the sun goes down. I wanted to hit the Harley Davidson of Folsom. Folsom, CA is home to a large prison which some big music acts have played at. The shirt from the dealership has the prison on it. On my way to Tahoe I drove US-50. Its a twisty hilly road through the Eldorado National Forest. Pretty scenery, but like most of the roadways in California you need to be at least 5 miles an hour of the speed limit or you will get run over.

After following a camper and tractor trailer I finally got to the front of the line, only problem was CHP was sitting there with a radar gun. I knew I was going a little quick but didn't think I was that quick. Needless to say, I got pulled over. When the guy comes to the car, I give him my info (including my work ID which he quickly handed back to me). I figured OK, CHP doesn't cut any breaks, why should I beg and plead with the guy. After I get the ticket from him I figured screw it, I am going to get some pictures of the truck. While I am shooting his truck I started talking shop. He asked me why I didn't tell him where I worked and I said I gave you my ID, what more could I do. I didn't want to be one of those dickheads who expects to get out of every ticket because of where they work. Maybe he will hook me up somehow. He did seem sincere when he said he doesn't write other PD's. Keeping my fingers crossed. Because California doesn't give you the ticket when you get pulled over. You get a written notice and that goes to the court. The court sends you the ticket. On a happier note, the Durango looks good in black and white. Note the winch on the front bumper. My guess is since some chippies can't read or be honorable enough to follow up on a deal maybe those same ones aren't bright enough to realize when they are in too much mud or snow. (Pretty bad for a guy who is pro police)

Side note: Douche bag from CHP says he is going to send me a patch. Well I figure I will be a good dude and send him one from where I work. Well I send it, still waiting on one from him. Let's see...can't read my work ID, can't send me a patch back. Sounds to me like Ponch isn't gay....he is just a stupid asshole.

In case you want to hear the CHiPs theme click on the play button

Lake Tahoe was everything the wife said. The first view I got coming around a canyon bend was amazing. I got into town and hit the Harley shop (who would have thought that?) I was running late due to my encounter with CHP and luckily had the number to the South Lake Tahoe Harley Davidson store. The young girl working at the store, Lindsey, said they were closing in 10 minutes but would wait for me. She is from the other side of Tahoe so when I was explaining where I was she wasn't too sure. She helped me pick out shirts and was awesome. The store is actually a satellite store of Carson City Harley Davidson and is only open from May until October. Lindsey helped me pick out shirts and was awesome. Its amazing how much more relaxed and patient people are when you get out into the country.

I drove through downtown South Lake Tahoe, as promised it was pretty much the tourist trap I was promised. Now that I made the Harley shop, I can make some time on the road. Head east young man. I follow signs for Carson City, Nevada. Did I mention this is the second state capital I will be going through? Anyway, traffic was a little heavy in Carson City so I decided to take US-50 east. This is a two lane highway which is pretty straight. I figured there wouldn't be a lot to slow me down once out of town based on the map. I was right, once outside of town I encountered nothing. Nevada is a rather liberal state. Prostitution and gambling are legal here. In fact, for a while I thought the state was nothing more than brothels, casinos and ATM machines, I had issues finding a gas station. I did however find the Whore Mall. The big neon arrow and the 3 individual brothels all lined up in a row; The Kit Kat Ranch, The Bunny Ranch and the Sage Brush Ranch. I first thought it would be cool to go in and have a beer. Then I thought to myself, what kind of cooties were floating. So I made a run for it and continued east.

I can't really tell you about Nevada as I crossed most of it in the dark. Same goes for Utah. I wish I could have seen the Great Salt Lake. Wait, why the hell do I care if I saw the lake? What makes it so special? I could smell the salt air when I passed. What more do I need?

I continued driving until I started falling asleep. That was just outside of Park City, Utah. Park City is where the 2002 Winter Olympics were held. I found myself a hotel at 5:00am local time (7:00am eastern time). Eighteen hours on the road and 934 miles down, damn long day.

Thats a long days worth of driving