Cross Country Move

By:  Sam
June 13, 2010

By Chester (Sam’s Dog)

After talking (and talking, and talking…..) about moving to Washington state. Sam finally decided to follow through. At the end of May, we crammed all of his possessions in his car and bid adieu to our friends in Vermont. That sadistic jerk even thought that he could fit me in his tiny front seat.

Yup, This was going to be really fun…. way to accommodate your old dog Sam.

For the first part of our journey, we drove around New England. We hung out with Ben in Hanover, visited Allen on Squam Lake, and spent a night at Sam’ Grandmas house before setting out in earnest.

While we were in NH we came across the first of many great signs we’d encounter on this trip.

Sam stopped at the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning NY, he thought it was cool but I had to wait in the car on a hot day, so I thought the place was boring and miserable.

Niagara Falls, the next place we stopped, was cool.

An awesome natural phenomenon right in the middle of an industrial wasteland.

… and my favorite part: the freezing cold mist. “Just take the stupid picture Sam”

At Niagara Falls we lucked out. Despite the fact that it was Memorial Day weekend, the place was practically abandoned, we were able to drive right out to Goat Island State Park and park for free. Our luck continued when we found Evangola State Park on the eastern shore of Lake Erie. I think we got in after the park closed, because the gate was unmanned and we got a free camping spot right on the lake. We were both tired, so Sam set the tent up in a hurry and we both passed out.

Sometime in the middle of the night, we realized that setting the tent up in a hurry wasn’t a great idea. We were able to sleep through the first two hours of the thunderstorm, but by hour three, the depression the tent (really a tarp) was in began to fill with water. By the time Sam finally dragged himself out of his sleeping bag, my bed was totally soaked and his sleeping bag was a soggy mess. It was 4Am, but we decided to hit the road rather than continue to not sleep. Sam was able to fit all his wet stuff in a garbage bag, but my sopping wet bed wouldn’t fit in, so we had to leave it behind. Thanks jerk now I don’t have a bed.

For the next two days we rocketed across what, for a good portion of early American history, was commonly referred to as the “Great American Desert”. “Great Plains”, “heartland”, and “bread-basket” don’t really capture how miserable this place is and in my opinion we’d be better served by a term that properly conveys the emptiness that is the middle of the country. Since this topographically-challenged part of the country offers not one single interesting thing to look at, it’s inhabitants attempt to make up for it with silly signs. A note to mid-westerners: your signs are no substitute for the Rocky Mountains.

Uhhh, what?

Checking into Devils Lake State Park was easily the highlight of the mid-west.
“Have you ever stayed at a Wisconsin state park before?”
“I’ve never even been to Wisconsin before today.”
You’ve never been to Wisconsin before????”

… yes, a 20 second conversation was the highlight of the mid west.

Continue Reading: 1 2 3 4 5 6 Next »

Read about the author:   Sam
Enjoy this TR? Read another: TR: Nisqually Ice Cliff


  1. christian
    wrote on June 13th, 2010 at 6:07 pm  

    that view of shuksan from the ski area never gets old…glad you and sam made it out safely. cheers.

  2. Josh A
    wrote on June 13th, 2010 at 6:07 pm  

    Nice write up…

    Funny, I also ended up caving and getting a hotel in Rapid City when I took a road trip out west. You should’ve gone to Crazy Horse, way more interesting the Mount Rushmore, and huge by comparison.

  3. powhounddd
    wrote on June 14th, 2010 at 7:37 am  

    Awesome dude. I want to drive across the continent too next time I go West!! Good luck in your new home and looking forward to some pretty interesting TR’s from that neck of the woods…

  4. Sam
    wrote on June 14th, 2010 at 12:00 pm  

    Thanks everyone! I was sorry to leave the EC, but I’m looking forward to lots of new exploring. We’re only getting in to spring season here now, so we’ll be skiing well into the summer, if not all year round.

    • powhounddd
      wrote on June 14th, 2010 at 4:10 pm  

      I will just pretend I didn’t read that last bit. *claps hands over ears* I CAN’T HEAR YOU! NANANANAAA!

  5. Porter Haney
    wrote on June 14th, 2010 at 12:43 pm  

    Sam! Glad you and Chester made it safe and sound. Good job breaking the dog author barrier. I dig the new style.

  6. Danno
    wrote on June 14th, 2010 at 2:27 pm  
  7. Greg
    wrote on June 14th, 2010 at 5:31 pm  

    awesome awesome awesome photo journal… Chester has definitely found his voice too! never knew he had it in him.

    it’s funny you headed east before heading west… right?

    did you do that to hike the moose thinking you might not ever get back to tag that one or something?

  8. Ben
    wrote on June 15th, 2010 at 2:35 pm  

    beautiful! love the last picture…

    it’s always interesting seeing that vast inner half of the country… and SO nice to see the topography finally rising up from the plains.

    enjoy WA!

  9. MadLancelotSki
    wrote on June 15th, 2010 at 10:40 pm  
  10. Butch Chamberlain
    wrote on June 25th, 2010 at 9:12 am  

    Well I call that an epic TR. The commentator was real good as well.
    I like a dog with character. After seeing the final destination it is of
    no wonder that a person would be drawn to there. I wish you more fun and
    more trips to show us. It’s these little glimpses of the world outside of
    Verm’ont thast facinates me. Keep on sending these TR’s !!!GREAT!!! BC

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