Monday, June 27, 2016

Moved to Tucson

If you have never had the great pleasure of driving across most of the country, let me lead in my post with establishing some "heads-up" information for you in the off-chance that you do ever undertake such a journey:

Texas is gigantic.

We loaded up the Jetta (again) on Friday morning and undertook the New Orleans to Tucson portion over the next two days.  Our goal was to make it to Austin, TX and spend the night in a hotel there because we've both heard so many things about Austin as a fun place to be and live. Our arrival in Austin allowed for enough time to cruise downtown a bit before grabbing some dinner on South Congress (it seems as though "THE" streets to be on in Austin are 6th and Congress).  We woke up and banged out an absolutely awesome long run on the river path, which probably slots in at one of the top 3 or 5 running locations I've ever had the privilege of enjoying.

Austin skyline

The long-ish run meant a late start to our drive to Las Cruces, NM but with 9 hours to go we set off into the Texas highway life again.

For the record, I-10 through Texas is ridiculous.  You enter the state on I-10 (after passing through Baton Rouge, Lafayette, and Lake Charles) and see an exit sign for "Exit 870."  Knowing our interstate system means that we have 870 miles to go...on I-10. JUST in Texas.  That's a pretty amazing mind f*** when you first breach the state's borders.

Score 1 for Texas.

The main thing I remember from this day (other than being afraid of running out of diesel in between fuel stops, which are relatively few and far between out in the middle of nowhere) is how much better my mileage was (keep in mind, the car is FULLY loaded and has two bikes on top; admittedly two super aero bikes, but still...) compared to the day before.  This was a good thing, obviously, as it meant that if I got super low out in no man's land I could make it longer on fumes...

Our relatively late arrival in NM (although we gained another hour after crossing the border) didn't leave time for anything other than going to sleep, but we woke up in the morning to get in a quick 40 minute run out to a mountain and back.  The day was noticeably hotter, but also much drier.  A foreshadowing of thing to come...

The drive to Tucson itself was quick and easy, but it got hotter and hotter as the trip wore on and we got further west.  By the time we got to Tucson my car's temp reading was saying "110" or thereabouts (at about 1-2pm), which is a real big number (but it's a dry heat, they said).

We showed up at the house (which, keep in mind, neither of us have seen in person or knew anything about it other than the listing) and were very pleasantly pleased to see that it was great and exactly as we hoped.  For the record, online shopping can be very useful and convenient.  Online shopping for a place to live, however, is a slightly riskier business ;)

So far this week it's been a steady process of settling in, straightening up, unloading, receiving packages we shipped here from home (all of my bikes have now made it, which makes me very happy), discovering the surrounding areas (so far we've had three delicious servings of local sonoran cuisine options), meeting people and being outdoors as much as possible (between the hours of 6:00am and 10:00am if at all possible giving the 100 degree plus temperatures...) to enjoy being in such an outdoors focused city!

And for a quick trip across the country, for your viewing pleasure:

Cross Country Time Lapse from James Haycraft on Vimeo.

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