Benjamin BaerIf you follow @BackyardBaers on Twitter, then you know I just got done traveling the West on a pretty serious road trip. A good friend and I embarked on a ten-day road trip that spanned through Austin, TX, Albuquerque, NM, Sedona, AZ, Las Vegas, NV, Yosemite National Park, and back to Las Vegas. I’m not someone that does a ton of traveling; I always feel like I’m much too busy to get away for any significant amount of time. This length of a getaway was completely unknown to me; I don’t recall the last time I was away from home for more than a few days. So, I originally had reservations about being away for so long. But it didn’t take long to get over that and start enjoying the open road.  

Day 0:

I flew from Central Virginia to Austin, Texas bright and early on a Thursday morning. Got into Austin around 9 a.m., and we immediately ran errands to pick up a few items for the trip. Then, of course, I spent the rest of the day strolling down memory lane, since I used to live in ATX. I had to visit the old house to see how the new owners are taking care of my once-prized lawn (not very well), and then I stopped at a few of my favorite places. We had lunch at one of my favorite tex-mex restaurants, grabbed a beer at my favorite happy hour bar, and then had dinner at my favorite BBQ joint. It was essentially all my favorite ATX places packed into one day … and it was great!

Day 1:

We left at about 6 a.m. on a Friday and spent the day driving. This was the only day of the trip that was essentially driving all day. It was a pretty uneventful drive, but I think we were so excited about what was to come and the idea of beginning this epic trip that it went by pretty quick. We saw quite a few wind farms, which was pretty neat. I had never seen wind turbines before, but we saw tons of them on our first day of travel. They looked like something from the future — which I guess makes sense, since that’s supposed to be one of the up-and-coming energy sources of the future. Late in the afternoon, we made it to Amarillo, TX, where we stopped and checked out Cadillac Ranch to take a few pictures and then continued to Albuquerque. We had dinner at a local brewery, and then relaxed to get ready for the next day of travel.



Day 2:





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