Previous Roadtrips > 1985-1989
1985, I was still going to graduate school in Wisconsin, having taken a couple
of fall sabbaticals in order to travel around North America (O.K., I probably
wasn't as serious about graduate school as I should have been, but, hey, us
geographers need to travel). I bought a new Toyota pickup truck in 1985, which I still drive today. I
took my first trip completely around the U.S. that fall and had a blast
exploring areas in the East and the South, an area that I hadn't really seen before, and
enjoyed visiting friends and relatives. I learned a lot of tricks about solo traveling
during that trip... and about how to stretch a dollar (tricks which I still use today).
finally graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1986. After working
again that summer in Colorado as a ranger, I decided to move to Florida for the winter simply because
I'd always wanted to live in Florida, so just like Jed Clampett, I packed up
my truck in Oregon and drove to Florida. I didn't know anyone within a
thousand miles of Florida but found an apartment in Bradenton,
south of Tampa, and got a job at the Bradenton Herald newspaper. The whole
Florida adventure was a lot of fun.
I left Florida
after a few months to return west, where I worked
as a ranger for
two more seasons in Colorado. I didn't do much road-tripping in 1989 but
did sail with my Dad from Alaska to Washington that summer on his 40-foot
sailboat, a six-week adventure that we both enjoyed. By that time, I was
ready to get serious about life and maybe, heaven forbid, start a career!
Road Trips: 1985 - 1989
Above left: My
brand-new and bumperless Toyota pickup truck on its
very first cross-country trip, at Zion National
Park in Utah. I've driven this truck
for 16 years and have never had an
accident or received a ticket. It
still gets 30 miles per gallon, just like when
it was new.
Above right: Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia, in the fall of 1985.
Nova Scotia is as far east as you can
drive on the North American mainland. I've
driven to Nova Scotia three times now and
always underestimate how large it is. Because
of nasty weather, I don't recommend
visiting Nova Scotia between early November and early May.
Previous Road Trips:
Trips: 1980 - 1984