Monday, August 18, 2008

On the Road from California to Wyoming, U.S.A. (July 31 - August 1, 2008)

I spent two days driving from San Francisco, California to Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming, with a quick overnight stop in Elko, Nevada and a detour to see Craters of the Moon National Monument in Idaho.

The drive from San Francisco up into the mountains of Lake Tahoe (along Highway 80) was scenic but surprisingly congested. Crossing Nevada (still Highway 80) was, for the most part, flat and empty, but with a certain unique beauty. Southeastern Idaho offered the most variety: relatively flat and arid terrain near the border with Nevada; the bizarre volcanic landscape of the Snake River Plain; rolling farmland near Idaho Falls; and finally, the picturesque Swan Valley and nearby mountain ranges bordering Wyoming.

Here's just a small sampling of photos from the road:
A fitting sign for the start of my road trip!
Objects in mirror are closer than they appear
On the road in Nevada; this sign was slightly unnerving
This deserted old main street in Wells is the most intact abandoned railroad row in northern Nevada. Many towns like Wells felt the effects of the West’s transition from rail to road to superhighway.
Two states down, one to go…
The Snake River Canyon in southern Idaho. In 1974, Evel Knievel attempted a motorcycle jump over the canyon, but one of his parachutes deployed on takeoff, and he floated to the canyon floor.

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