Kansas City to Rock Springs

Just a reminder that my iPhone 8 Plus has a great fuck­ing cam­era. It’s uncan­ni­ly, unfath­omably, annoy­ing­ly good. Here are some of the key shots from by far the most dra­mat­ic leg of our Mis­souri-Ore­gon pil­grim­age.

Hawthorn and I were on what was sup­posed to be the last leg of our cross-coun­try road­trip to Port­land, blast­ing up the vast, oth­er­world­ly Inter­state 80, about 90 min­utes East of the Utah bor­der. It was late after­noon and we were both begin­ning to get hun­gry, so we decid­ed to stop in Rock Springs, which the road­side sig­nage had been empha­siz­ing for a sig­nif­i­cant dis­tance. Despite its miser­ly pop­u­la­tion of less than 25,000, the area is the fourth most pop­u­lat­ed munic­i­pal­i­ty in the state. (Incred­i­bly, Cheyenne — capi­tol and most pop­u­late of Wyoming — has only 62,845 occu­pants as of 2014.)
 
I spied and set course for Exit 104, but hit some kind of mas­sive, trau­mat­ic fis­sure in the asphalt with my XJR’s right-front tire (this will become impor­tant infor­ma­tion momen­tar­i­ly.) The sort of impact that makes you yell, but doesn’t quite wor­ry you about a punc­ture or dam­aged sus­pen­sion, though per­haps it should have wor­ried me, con­sid­er­ing that I’d already destroyed two tires and a wheel in a par­tic­u­lar­ly-har­row­ing pot­hole strike in July, back in rur­al Mis­souri. Regard­less, the twen­ty-year-old, mas­sive­ly over­laden Exec­u­tive Saloon had already endured so much more than I would’ve expect­ed from it in the past four days of the trip — includ­ing the mod­er­ate­ly treach­er­ous Love­land Pass near Key­stone, CO — that my con­fi­dence in its invul­ner­a­bil­i­ty had been sig­nif­i­cant­ly bol­stered.

Kansas City to Rock Springs