Monday, March 24, 2014

Tripping across the U.S.A. (again)

Twice a year, Ron and I drive across the country.  Usually we take the "short" way - or what we call the "Northern Route".  However, last year when we were driving two cars, we ran into snow, sleet, ice, wind, and overall miserable driving conditions.  Since we were leaving about two weeks earlier this year and the weather forecast looked a bit formidable for the I-90 corridor, we decided to take the "southern route".  This one takes us all the way across the southern tier of states on I-20 and I-10, and then straight up I-5.  The overall trip is about 500 miles further this way, but we can be pretty sure if we see snow it will only be for a few miles in the Siskiyous in northern California and Oregon.
It's coming back to us why we avoid this route. 
Palo Verde trees are in bloom and beautiful in Arizona.
The dessert is at its most vibrant.
So a lot of the trip is much more interesting on the southern route at this time of year.
Love the rock formations of Arizona.
We smelt this coming for about 5 miles before we got to it in California.
Now this is dedication to protecting a crop!
Many different crops for hundreds of miles in Southern California, from citrus, to nuts, to row crops.
Pistachios, and much more!
We've missed all the California agriculture.  I love to see things growing, and California is the growing capital of the country.  Forty years ago, I took an Environmental Studies course, and the underlying theme then was how limiting a factor water was and would increasingly be in the future.
The future is here.  We saw signs all over California about water, and the last wheel line we saw was somewhere in Alabama.  
 We saw our first white mountain when we were a little south of Redding, and Mt Shasta was gorgeous as we went further north.
I have been missing mountains!