Stats to Date:
Total Miles:4891
Total States:7
Total Oceans Touched:1
Car Problems:1
Total Times Lost:4
Day: 11 Location: Crested Butte, CO
"Enjoy each day. God loves to hear your laughter."
-- Melanie W.'s Email

It wasn't so easy to laugh today. I started off at 9am heading towards Crested Butte (or so I thought) from Salt Lake City. Well, instead of looking on the map, I assumed that Crested Butte was right next to Durango. I plugged Durango into my cool GPS toy and started plugging along. While on this trip, I passed a really cool area of Utah that looked like it came right out of a Jon Wayne western. You know those arches of rock you always see in the movies? I passed the park that preserves all that... so, I figured, I'm making good time -- why not take an hour detour. I did -- and it was well worth my time, I got some great pictures.

So -- I start plugging along again and got on Hwy 666 (No, I'm not making this up) and I figured any highway with the mark of the beast must be pretty dangerous. But no -- the drive was as pleasant as any. Smooth roads, no ice, the sun was out. It was a beautiful day and I was arriving early, at 5pm. I get to Durango and call the folks to get final directions and let them know I'm close. The conversation went a little like this:

Brad: "Hey, I'm in Durango -- how do I get there?"
Tracy: "Durango? Where's that?"
Brad: "Crap. Are you kidding?"
Tracy: "No, I'll have to get a map."

Turns out, I'm about 150 miles from Crested Butte -- but not 150, smooth sailing miles. 150 icy, curvy, mountainous miles IN THE DARK! During one stretch, it took me one hour to drive 15 MILES! 15 MILES! There were no guardrails, no passing lanes... I have never seen a road this dangerous. Once I got onto the highway doing about 65, I figured, "hey, its Christmas Eve -- why not kill some wildlife?" (that was sarcasm, by the way...) So a skunk and a DEER decided to jump into the path of my car. But wait, it gets better. I get to Crested Butte and can't find the place we're staying. So, I'm driving around and get pulled over for doing 21 in a 15 MPH zone. The officer was extremely friendly and didn't even give me a warning. So, I keep driving and finally have to ask a different police officer (they're all really nice here) to help me find the condo. I arrived at 11pm after 13 hours of driving. Glad to be here and thankful I made it safely.

Note: I will probably not be updating my journal over the next 5 days until I leave for Dallas on the 30th for New Years and the Cotton Bowl. I may put something up here, but it won't be about my day on the slopes. Sorry. Also, my journey was in the Eagle (Http:// today (Christmas Eve), so if any of you have access to the online archives or can grab me a physical copy -- I'd really appreciate it! Email it to I still haven't seen it -- Thanks!

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