Arizona 2024: Day 37: Fort Wayne, IN: Going Dark

Lovely night sleep which was a bit surprising after consuming 4 Bud Lights over 5 hours. Technically 3.5 because I spilled half of one in two incidents. The same type of incident, twice. Within a few minutes of each other. Question: Why do car campers have to open and close their car doors 319 times when setting up camp late at night?

Morning walk was around the lodge and other buildings at Pere Marquette State Park and then I went over to the Illinois River to watch stuff float down the river. Saw the pelicans on the other side of the river but no eagles.

After the walk we hustled and hit the road at 0900 after a sad “see you soon” with Tony and Barb. We did not dump the tanks nor take on water.

When departing the park we took the same route that brought us there along the Illinois and then Mississipi river. It’s still a beautiful drive. We saw pelicans and then an eagle was flying alongside the van, that was pretty cool.

Our mission for the day was to get to some kind of viewing spot for the eclipse. We left early to allow buffer time in case the roads were busy. Once we hit Effingham, IL we were in the totality zone and it became a matter of how far we wanted to go. We had targeted Terre Haute, IN but chose to press on to Brazil, IN. Mrs Milddogs had rationalized that if we got off the main highway we could find somewhere to park for a few hours. We passed the fairgrounds in Brazil, IN and there was one group of people there. Where are all the people? Why was there so little traffic all day? We decided on the city park Mrs Milddogs had located and we got set up there with perhaps 30 other people all spread out. There was a dude walking around playing guitar, but he mostly stayed 100 meters or so away from the main group amongst his tolerant friends.

Must say the eclipse was really cool. None of my pictures will do it justice. Our made in Tennessee, ISO certified in Ireland and purchased at a Texas state park eclipse glasses seemed to do their job (best we can tell so far). I set up my Insta360 on the roof of the van and did a time lapse. It is basically: sunny, sunny…sunny, dark, sunny, sunny….

It was interesting how as the sun was becoming covered you really could not tell that much. Then, it approach totality, the temperature dropped a bunch and it went dark fast!

Glad we arranged around the eclipse. Also glad the traffic was not a poop-show in this part of the world.

Once totality was complete, we packed up and hit the road. Our goal was a Cracker Barrel in Anderson, IN. We had trouble finding any viable camping due to everything being booked for the eclipse. We arrived at the CB around 1700 and felt it was too early to stop. We decided to head up to Fort Wayne, another 80 minutes or so to either Costco or Cracker Barrel. Costco declined our request to park their overnight and thus lost the sale of two hot dogs so we went to Cracker Barrel east of Fort Wayne. The good news is that we are now only 300 km from Sarnia, ON. But, it was a long day. There was traffic heading up to Fort Wayne that cause some slowdowns. We are both tired. Both are ready to be home.

Tomorrow we are back in Canada! A few days of rest in Sarnia and then we will be home. I may not post tomorrow at the usual time but will do my best. I’m out of Bud Light and Whole Wheat bread.

Normally the drive home is the worst part. We have covered from Tucson, AZ to here with only 1 day where we weren’t on the move. But in those days, we have done and seen some cool stuff and people. Made the slog less sloggy.

Thanks for the great show, eclipse! We lucked out on a good viewing spot and had pretty good skies.

I currently regret not having a shower in the very crappy showers at Pere Marquette. They would have rated a 3/10 at best IF I had proven they had hot water. But, alas, I’ll never know.

You made it this far: here is a link to my Timelapse


Similar Posts