Article: Part 2 “Where Life Is Elevated” US Country Road Trip
Part 2 “Where Life Is Elevated” USA Cross-country Road Trip West Coast to East Coast
You can see the other parts (articles/videos/photos) here
After the start of our road trip on the 4th of July 2014 in Malibu, we spent a few nights in Palmdale, California before heading northeast on the 6th.
Our next destination would be one of our favourite states – Utah.
During the pre-trip planning process, we thought that the I-15 to Las Vegas would be quiet after 4th of July weekend. It turned out that we were wrong. There were still numerous people heading to Vegas.
Fortunately, the traffic wasn’t as bad as on the other side where many people drove home after their big weekend out in Vegas.
At one point the traffic on the other side was at a standstill in the middle of the desert in temperatures in the hundreds (or just over 40˚C). We were lucky!
In the middle of the journey, I (Kristin) took a few shots from the window. The first shot was an overexposed mistake which actually turned out to be pretty good. After all, there is not much scenery on the drive to Vegas. You can see the brownish-red coloured ground of the Mojave Desert with mountain ranges in the background.
Outside of Vegas we stopped for fuel and were quickly reminded of the reason why we avoided a stay there this time around despite the fact that you can get some amazing hotel deals there.
When Paul wanted to get a receipt from one of the cashiers inside the gas station, he was ignored by three ladies who had nothing else to do. Once he got the attention of one lady, there wasn’t any sorry or thank you. This is the other side of Las Vegas. We find the people more tough and the customer service less pleasing. Not even a cheap five star hotel can make up for this.
While Paul was battling the beasts, I took a photo of this car with some comfy girls inside. Wonder how the seatbelts work for the one in the passenger seat?
If you look closer then you might be able to see some writing on the car. Whilst it still puzzles me to see a car with non-artful writings on, it is actually a tradition in the US during graduation time. You can see a lot of cars with written stuff on the windows. This car is obviously different and has nothing to do with graduation.
The scenery along I-15 became more interesting once we crossed the border into Arizona. You basically drive through the big canyon called the Virgin River Gorge. The Virgin River Gorge runs from Arizona to our destination St. George in Utah.
The drive through the canyon was like a teaser of what was about to come the following days in the “Life Elevated” state of Utah (the slogan you can find on Utahn license plates).
Here are three tips for driving through the desert:
1) Have plenty of water with you because you could be in a traffic jam or your car could break down.
2) Make sure you have a good amount of fuel left. A good amount of fuel is not only good to have for traffic jams but also because remote areas can often charge more for fuel.
3) Make sure you are well rested because the monotony of driving dead straight roads can make you easy susceptible to fall asleep. It is best if you have someone with you to keep you awake.