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Sliding in the Snow in Kansas (and all the Rest of the US)

Norfolk to California in 1964


View Bermuda on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

I told Bob I was not taking three cars, two children and a boat across country. So we sold our little boat
Homebuilt boat

Homebuilt boat


(it was 34 years before we bought another sailboat) and the 1949 Plymouth
1949 Plymouth

1949 Plymouth


and Bob, the the two girls and I drove the new station wagon
Washing the new Ford station wagon in Norfolk

Washing the new Ford station wagon in Norfolk


across to California and moved into the house we had rented.

The trip did not go smoothly. In December 1964, it was bad weather with snow and sleet. My parents had snow tires which they weren't using, so we put them on our 1964 Ford Station Wagon, and left for California the first week in December. The girls were one and three years old. My mother sent us off with food to eat for a few days for breakfast and lunch.

Due to our experience with driving the 1932 Plymouth in October, we did not want to go into Pennsylvania because while we had Pennsylvania license plates on the car (because Bob had declared that as his permanent residence), the car had never been to Pennsylvania and did not have a Pennsylvania inspection sticker. So when we headed west in Maryland, I tried very hard to stay out of Pennsylvania. But I just could not do it. The weather was deteriorating and it was getting dark and I finally gave in.

We escaped from Pennsylvania without being stopped and proceeded west in the snow and bad weather. We would eat breakfast in the car, use the bathroom (for us and the three year old) when we stopped for gas about 10, eat lunch in the car, stop for gas about 2 and then stop for the day between 4 and 5. When we hit Kansas there was a bad snowstorm with lots of accidents and people sliding off the road.
Bleak landscape

Bleak landscape


One of the snow tires went flat. The spare was under the back deck which meant that everything in the back had to be unloaded (in the snow) in order to change the tire. In the back were not only our suitcases, but everything that the movers would not take - spray cans, matches and candles among other things. After Bob changed the tire, the car was hard to drive with one snow tire and one non-snow tire on the back so we had to find a tire store and get another snow tire. And put the spare back where it belonged under the luggage.

As we proceeded on in the snow, the other snow tire went flat. I think they had not been used so long that they dry-rotted. So we did the same procedure again. Unload the car in the snow to get the spare, put on the spare and go to a tire store to buy another snow tire.
Train and butte from the car

Train and butte from the car


We were heading for my Uncle Harry's house in Brighton near Denver.
Bob and Uncle Harry by Uncle Harry's car

Bob and Uncle Harry by Uncle Harry's car


We were really glad to get there. We took a break from the driving and Uncle Harry took us to Denver - we went to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science.
D and the Bear

D and the Bear


The only way I know this is that I took a photo of my daughter at the sculpture outside the museum called "The Grizzlies Last Stand" by Louis Paul Jones. Inside, there are more than 90 wildlife and habitat scenes which always interested my children.

We also visited the US Air Force Academy
USAFA chapel

USAFA chapel

Entrance to the chapel

Entrance to the chapel

Parade ground

Parade ground

and we drove to my father's birth place - Silver Cliff.
Lover's leap

Lover's leap

Hardscrabble Canyon

Hardscrabble Canyon

Top of cliffs

Top of cliffs

For Purple Mountain Majesties

For Purple Mountain Majesties

Mountains at the end of the street

Mountains at the end of the street

Harry and Bob and D coming out of the newspaper office (The Wet Mountain Tribune)

Harry and Bob and D coming out of the newspaper office (The Wet Mountain Tribune)

Round Mountain (and Uncle Harry)

Round Mountain (and Uncle Harry)

The old FIgge house (my father's birthplace)

The old FIgge house (my father's birthplace)

Snow

Snow

and the Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs
Kissing camels - Garden of the Gods

Kissing camels - Garden of the Gods


Balanced rock

Balanced rock

D at Balanced Rock

D at Balanced Rock

Ship rock

Ship rock

Bob on Ship Rock

Bob on Ship Rock

From Ship Rock - Uncle Harry's car

From Ship Rock - Uncle Harry's car


From here on the trip went better.
Road

Road

Road beside the mountains

Road beside the mountains

Mountains across the snow

Mountains across the snow

Buttes

Buttes

Snowy road

Snowy road

Bob and the kids at Loveland Pass 11,988 ft

Bob and the kids at Loveland Pass 11,988 ft

Battle Mountain in the fog

Battle Mountain in the fog

Mountain top above the fog

Mountain top above the fog

We stopped in Reno, and Bob and I attended a Robert Goulah show. I was disappointed in the amount of profanity in the show - he was sanitized for TV.

Our decorated front door for Christmas

Our decorated front door for Christmas

Aunt Alice had given us a packed lunch which lasted us for several days and included some fruit. The kids would eat the food and sometimes some of it would end up down on the floor. When we crossed the border into California, we had to go through an agriculture inspection. When they got to our car they could smell the apple cores, so we had to give them all the rest of the fruit.

We got to Monterey and moved into the house we had rented in time to celebrate Christmas there.
Charlie Brown Xmas tree

Charlie Brown Xmas tree

Built in wall oven and my refrigerator

Built in wall oven and my refrigerator

Stove top from the dining room - my bird plates on the back of the cabinet

Stove top from the dining room - my bird plates on the back of the cabinet

Ford station wagon on left.  Our stove left of door (covered since kitchen had built in oven and cooktop).  Washer and my grandfather's old gas  dryer on right

Ford station wagon on left. Our stove left of door (covered since kitchen had built in oven and cooktop). Washer and my grandfather's old gas dryer on right

Behind our house were some sheep

Behind our house were some sheep


Between January 1965 and October 1966 Bob attended US Navy PostGraduate School and we toured California from Los Angeles to San Francisco.

Posted by greatgrandmaR 11:46 Archived in USA

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Comments

Your Black Canyon pic shows that to be a spectacular place, but on the map it's a long way from highways. But one of the pics appears to have the railroad or another highway on the opposite side of the Canyon. Could it be, perhaps, that this is Glenwood Canyon?

Also, Loveland Pass is reached well before this, and I think the photo you've labelled 'Road beside the mountains' is from the area West of Loveland Pass as well, somewhere around Wolcott, perhaps. In that region you're following alongside the Eagle River and the fledgling Colorado River.

by Ray Bell

I don't know why I labeled that slide (these are digitized 35 mm slide photos taken in 1964) as Black Canyon of the Gunnison. I think it was actually taken in the Hardscrabble on the way to Silver Cliff. So I've moved the photos.

The visit to Silver Cliff was not on the way to Loveland Pass. When we got to Brighton, Uncle Harry drove us around to the USAFA, to Silver Cliff and to the Garden of the Gods. Then we got back in our car and drove from Brighton over Loveland Pass. And basically the only way I have of knowing where photos were taken in 1964 is by using my memory of where we went combined with the number on the slide put there by the photo processer. I have the order the photos were taken in, but in those days the camera did not record the date and time. So you are probably right about the road beside the mountains, but there's really no way to tell. So I'm just going to leave it.

by greatgrandmaR

I once spent about eight hours on Google Earth confirming where I'd used a carwash in France. That was over several days, in the end I found it but it was tricky as the carwash had been rebuilt and doubled in size, there were just some clues in the background which enabled me to positively confirm it.

The reason I mentioned Glenwood Canyon is because it has the highway down one side, the Colorado River in the middle and the railway down the other side. Same as some parts of Clark Fork in Montana.

by Ray Bell

I am really sure that that photo was the Hardscrabble. I know I never was in Glenwood Canyon.

I wrote up the first trip with the 1932 Plymouth in 1964 and it was published in the 4 and 6 Cylinder Plymouth magazine. But for all the rest of the trips (1938 up to 2002, mostly all I have are b&w prints or the 35 mm slides and my memory or sometimes I can find letters my mother wrote or that I wrote to my mother at the time. I didn't have camera with a flash that put a date on photos until 1988, I didn't have a digital camera until 2000, and I didn't have a photo-taking cell phone until about 2014. Which means that I didn't have GPS locations on my photos before then.

Back then, when I took photos, we waited until we had taken a whole roll to get them developed and it might be a week or two until we got them mailed back. My sister found a roll of film that she took in 1970 and she didn't have it developed until 1990. But most of the time, it was less than that.

Mother and I developed a routine - we put the photos in order by the number on them, projected the slides and wrote where we took them, the number, what was in the photo and an assessment of how good a photo it was. We put this list in the slide box with the slides.

Then when we had time we would take each slide put it in order by the time we took it, and write a number on it, and put the number and the description in a notebook. We even had a system for categorizing the slides by subject - mountains, buildings, snow, etc. Each subject had a number and we wrote the subject numbers in the book and we had a file card for each subject which had the slide numbers that had that subject in them. Excellent slides had the corner clipped.

Starting with number one which for me was 1958 when I got my first 35 mm camera and going in sequence. I think I got up to the 9000s before I stopped numbering in the 1970s. My parents went up past 10,000 The numbers for this trip started at 2701.

by greatgrandmaR

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