Mt. Rainier and Lenticular Clouds - Dec. 2008 copyright: JMM

May 22, 2018

Happy Travelers

After our second grandson was born in March, we decided that it was high time we go to Ohio and meet the babies.  I was talking about it with Val and she said how she'd love to go too.  I told her she was more than welcome to caravan with us, since we were taking Sagan.

We all left at about midnight and drove all night and the next day to get there.  850 miles one way, about 17 hours due to stops.  


After we got through the mess that is the Cross Bronx Expressway, George Washington Bridge and New Jersey, we pulled over for breakfast in eastern Pennsylvania at around 7:00 a.m.

Here we are on the road again.  I couldn't bear to leave Sagan behind.  He's never boarded here like he did when I lived in Washington, and having my friends come in to feed and walk him wasn't really an option cause he'd be alone for hours and hours in between, and for days.  Thanks to the website, I was able to find a dog-friendly hotel that allowed all breeds, and also allowed dogs to stay in the rooms unattended if they were in a crate.  Our hotel was the Red Roof Inn, in Middletown and it was awesome.  6 miles from Casi & Jeff's, so it was easy to swing back to the hotel every couple of hours to walk and feed him.  He did great on this trip!  But I digress.

My trusty chauffeur.  We took the Suburban cause it had enough room for all the luggage, crate and the presents we were bringing to everyone.  

Coming into the Appalachian Mountains of PA.  It was foggy most of the way.

There are four tunnels through four mountains.  This is one of them, going through Alleghany Mountain.

Pennsylvania is one long-ass state.  

There's Val moving over in front of us.  

Lots of farms, barns and silos.

This blue bridge is in Belle Vernon, PA and it crosses the Monongahela River.  It's kind of ironic that I shot this picture when Belle Vernon ended up coming into play later on.

 There is a sliver of West Virginia between PA and OH.  I think it's all of 15 miles border to border. 

Really loved the old buildings.

Wheeling is the capitol of West Virginia and on the border of Ohio.  

Jeff & Casi live on the western part of OH so we still had another 4 to 5 hours of driving.  It was in OH where we discovered the air conditioning in the Suburban doesn't work.  The temperature also shot up from the 60s on the entire trip to the high 80s.  This last leg of the trip was pretty hot and miserable, slogging through farm country with nary a tree in sight, heading west with the late afternoon sun in our faces.

We did get a quick, cooling respite when we passed through a rain and wind squall.  

The skies were so dark and it got so windy that I was looking all over to see if any of the clouds started to rotate.

I would not have been surprised if that had turned into a funnel cloud, but it didn't.  I admit I was a little disappointed.

We arrived at our hotel in Middletown at about 4:00 p.m., exhausted, hot, sweaty and hungry.  Couldn't wait to get all our stuff up the room and crank the a/c.  Sagan was a bit stressed but that's to be expected after such a long car trip.  Val went to the hotel with us first even though she was staying w/ those guys, cause we all wanted to go to Jeff & Casi's together.  So we changed clothes real quick and tried to freshen up as best we could before heading over.   


  1. lovely barns and scenery. Sounds like the trip went well so far....!I look forward to the next part

    1. The trip west definitely went smoothly.

  2. I have been through that tunnel many a time on our way to and from North Carolina. That was one hell of a long trip to do in one hit. We used to stop for the night somewhere. Glad you didn't get a funnel cloud, nice to take a picture, not funny to be running from one.

    1. It was a very, very long trip. PA is 230 miles wide, then another 208 from the border of WV to the Dayton area. If you think 17 hours was bad in one stretch....the trip home was 27 hours.