Left Boise at about 7:00pm and drove to Snowville, Utah. Eastern Idaho/Northern Utah is really pretty, it’s hard to describe. Mountains and prairie doesn’t quite do it justice. It’s fascinating to me that people actually live in some of these incredibly remote towns. In a way, Snowville, Utah is more remote than Fairbanks. It’s hundreds of miles to the nearest airport, there are no stores except a gas station and a diner, and the weather is inhospitable. It really makes you wonder what people did there in the early 1900s in the winter. It’s not like you could even go outside, with 40mph winds, snow and -16F temperature; especially since you know that these people weren’t book readers. How many years can you play card games and carve wood before you go insane? I guess that’s where the phrase ‘whittling away your time’ comes from…
Left Snowville at about 10:00am on a beautiful morning, sunny and about fifty degrees out. We hit snow about forty miles from Snowville (which was ironically free of snow), and by the time we got into Ogden it had evolved into a blizzard. The roads were starting to ice over which made it so we couldn’t get to Salt Lake City, something I had really wanted to do. By the time we crossed into Wyoming it was sunny again, and there was about an inch of snow on the Great Divide. I guess I never really thought about snow in Wyoming, but it looked just like a western movie with the snow covered tors and tumble weeds. It was really striking. At about 7:00pm the weather turned abruptly worse, thick, blowing snow and icy roads. We drove for a couple of hours at twenty five miles per hour before we found a truck stop to pull over at, about twenty five miles from Laramie. The parking lot was already nearly full, probably about fifty or sixty trucks total.
The next day we awoke to a completely pack truck stop, eighty or more vehicles. The sun was shining, but there was also blowing fog that reduced visibility to about one thousand feet. Thinking that the fog was the reason for all of the trucks, we waited a few hours before going into the truck stop to ask. It turned out that I80 was closed in six places in the course of sixty miles for accidents, from Rawlins to Laramie. We waited for a few hours before we called the highway patrol only to be informed that it’d be ‘a few more hours’. We waited a few more hours; then at about 2:00pm I called the Highway Patrol again to be told ‘The Interstate has been closed since before 9:30am, I have no idea when it’ll be open’. A little disheartened we waited for another hour, and then the other semi-trucks started pulling out. The fog was still thick, but we went anyways because I had to be in Denver the next morning for the ACT. The rest of the drive through Wyoming was uneventful; cows, ranches and desert slowly giving way to prairie. In Colorado, we drove through Fort Collins to see the University of Colorado, then headed south to our campsite at Cherry Creek State Park.
The next morning I got up to take the ACT at East High in Denver. After the test we drove to Aurora to pick up my aunt and uncle and then to Boulder to walk around. It wasn’t a terribly eventful day, and I was tired from the ACT and the fact that I only got five hours of sleep the previous night.
This brings me to today. Today we got up and stayed at our campground until about noon. We had planned to drive around Denver today, but we had only gone a few miles when the left rear axle started to rattle really badly. We drove back to the campground and my dad fixed it (turned out to be the break shoe housing). At about 7:00 the car was fixed and we went to King Sooper (Kroger) to buy groceries before heading back home.