2022: The Year in Travel – January thru March

2022: The Year in Travel – January thru March

Adventure, Back Roads, Backroads Discoveries, Books, Buildings, Barns and Houses, Cross Country Road Trips, Family Travel, Graffiti Walls, Hiking & Biking, Hiking Trails, Ice Cream Places, Indiana, Kentucky, Less Beaten Paths Books, Lewis and Clark Sites, Murals, Offbeat Places, Pelicans, Place Names, Post Offices, Roadside Attractions, Selfies, Signs and Billboards, Staycations, Town Names, Unexpected Discoveries, Unique Eatery, Unique Places, US Highway 31, Vintage Neon, Wall Art, Water Towers, Waterfalls, Welcome Signs, Yard Art
[caption id="attachment_35952" align="alignleft" width="300"] Welcome to Pontiac, Illinois[/caption] What a year 2022 was!!  I started off the year in the midst of another COVID outbreak and high fuel prices.  My hopes for much travel in 2022 weren't very high. I expected it would be a lean travel year, but it turned out much different than I had anticipated.  By December 31 I had visited 14 states and driven nearly 21,000 miles.  This included nearly 1,300 miles (out of a total of 2,400) of driving on Route 66 from Albuquerque to Chicago.  I had actually dreamt of driving the entire length of Route 66 from Chicago to Santa Monica, CA in October, which was when I would celebrate my 66th birthday, but it wasn't meant to be.  Nevertheless, I was thrilled…
Read More
The Year in Travel – 2021 (Long post – may take a minute to load)

The Year in Travel – 2021 (Long post – may take a minute to load)

Adventure, Back Roads, Bike Trails, Books, Bridges, Buildings, Barns and Houses, Church Signs, Family Travel, Hiking & Biking, Hiking Trails, Indiana, Kentucky, Landscapes, Less Beaten Paths Books, Mountains, Murals, National and State Parks, Historic Sites and More, National Parks, Nature and Scenery, Offbeat Places, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Place Names, Post Offices, Quirky Things, Roadside Attractions, Roadsigns, Sandhill Cranes, Selfies, Sheltowee Trace, Signs and Billboards, Staycations, Street Art, Town Names, Travel Blogging, Unexpected Discoveries, Unique Eatery, Unique Houses, Unique Places, Unique Shops, US Highway 127, Virginia, Wanderlust, Waterfalls, Welcome Signs, West Virginia, Yard Art
What an interesting year 2021 turned out to be for me.  I started out the year with dreams of a road trip down the Florida panhandle to the southernmost point, but it didn't pan out. With COVID on the rampage, there were limitations and I didn't want to risk getting out too much.  But, I was also very heavily engaged in doing support driving for the Sheltowee Trace Association and my wife and daughter who participated in the 2021 STA Hiking Challenge, hiking sections of the 343 mile trail each month.  This took up a great deal of my time and ended up becoming the theme of my fifth Less Beaten Paths book, which was published on November 30 (see the bottom of this post for more details).  I drove…
Read More
SURPRISE! – Brand New Book on Sheltowee Trace is now available

SURPRISE! – Brand New Book on Sheltowee Trace is now available

Adventure, Back Roads, Backroads Discoveries, BBQ Places, Bike Trails, Books, Burger Joints, Eateries, Family Travel, Farmland, Flowers, Geologic Formations, Hiking & Biking, Hiking Trails, Kentucky, Landscapes, Less Beaten Paths Books, National and State Parks, Historic Sites and More, National Parks, Nature and Scenery, Place Names, Selfies, Sheltowee Trace, Signs and Billboards, Tennessee, Travel Blogging, Unique Eatery, Unique Places, Unique Shops, Wanderlust, Waterfalls, Wildflowers
[caption id="attachment_33788" align="alignleft" width="222"] Book 5[/caption] The year 2021 was a momentous year in terms of unique travel.  I spent nearly a month of driving and support on the Sheltowee Trace National Recreation Trail from Big South Fork in Tennessee to the Northern Terminus north of Morehead, Kentucky.  The trail itself is 343 miles long and my wife Julianne, daughter Marissa and over 90 others completed the Sheltowee Trace Association Trace Challenge over the course of the year, hitting sections month by month.  I decided back in October to change my book writing schedule so that I could cover this amazing adventure as a support driver and Driving the Sheltowee Trace - Highlights from a Support Driver is now available in both Kindle and Paperback as Book 5 of my…
Read More
Visiting Muhlenberg County, Kentucky: A Visit With the Big Twigs

Visiting Muhlenberg County, Kentucky: A Visit With the Big Twigs

Adventure, Back Roads, Backroads Discoveries, Books, Family Travel, Giant Things, Hiking & Biking, Hiking Trails, Kentucky, Large Statues, Less Beaten Paths Books, Murals, National and State Parks, Historic Sites and More, Nature and Scenery, Offbeat Places, People Shots, Quirky Things, Roadside Attractions, Selfies, Signs and Billboards, Tennessee, Travel Blogging, Travel with grandchildren, Unexpected Discoveries, Unique Places, Wall Art, Wanderlust, Welcome Signs
[caption id="attachment_33710" align="alignleft" width="300"] Sumoflam visiting with Happy Malone[/caption] This is the seventh post in my series on Muhlenberg County, Kentucky. On August 18, 2021 I was invited by Misty Deason, the owner of Apple House Mercantile and a member of the Muhlenberg County Board of Tourism, to come out for a visit.  She now carries my Less Beaten Paths books in her shop and wanted me to come out and sign them and then visit some of the major tourist attractions in this small, but unique, Kentucky county.   [caption id="attachment_33695" align="alignnone" width="700"] The Big Twigs[/caption] I had many reasons for a visit to Muhlenberg County via Misty's kind invitation.  Besides signing the books, I was most excited to visit with the county's newest giant residents in Lake Malone…
Read More
Sheltowee Trace Shakedown Hike 12/28/2019

Sheltowee Trace Shakedown Hike 12/28/2019

Adventure, Back Roads, Backroads Discoveries, Bridges, Geologic Formations, Hiking Trails, Kentucky, Offbeat Places, Sheltowee Trace, Unique Places
[caption id="attachment_22649" align="alignleft" width="225"] Start of the hike, both excited and scared![/caption] The Shakedown I awoke this morning to the lingering smell of Deep Blue essential oil on my pajamas. A Ziploc bag full of water was beside me, the bed around it damp from the condensation of melting ice cubes. I was stiff and my leg hurt. I grabbed my phone to self diagnose an inflamed IT Band (Iliotibial Band). It took several minutes to gather the courage to arise from the bed, and I walked stiff-legged to a bare wall to lean on while I gently stretched my tight muscles. The blue foam roller called to me. As I slowly lowered myself to my knees then onto the roller, I clasped my hands as if in prayer, my…
Read More