The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

27 July 2006

Without incident

Independence, Missouri — 379.5 miles

There are darn few back roads between OKC and KC that I haven't tried, and besides, this is just a quickie jaunt, so I took I-35 north, which becomes the Kansas Turnpike once over the state line. (Easy to spot, too: the road improves by an order of magnitude.) The usual practice is to exit at Emporia (mile 127), where 35 veers away from the Turnpike, and it occurred to me a few miles short of there that I've always done that, so today I stayed on the Turnpike, thinking that most of the big trucks will have already gotten off.

Which was true, at least through Topeka, where the Turnpike joins up with I-70, which by all accounts is twice as bad as I-35. It was today, anyway, but this was due to a combination of extensive construction work and (dare I say it?) rain. If nothing else, I learned something about Gwendolyn's aerodynamics: her front end is spotless, while there's gunk all around her trunk.

And whatever the airflow, it seemed to help, since I made it on a single tank without the Dreaded Orange Light coming on. I'll figure MPG some other time. Right now, I need to shake off the effects of driving for six and a half hours.

Oh, and Toll Report: Kansas Turnpike, $8.75. Note that if I'd driven straight through, instead of taking a couple of side trips (Wichita and Emporia, the latter for lunch), I might have saved a quarter or two.

Addendum: Or I might not. It is indeed $1.75 to Wichita East (Kellogg Avenue) and then $3.50 to Emporia, which is $5.25, instead of $5 for the whole 127 miles; however, they hit me for only $3.50 for the Emporia-to-KC leg, bringing the total to the proper $8.75.

Posted at 4:24 PM to World Tour '06