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Oct 26: Phillipsburg, Kansas to Ashland, Kansas

First the news:  Steve Williams, who writes the blog Scooter in the Sticks, has featured Single Cylinder Psyche in a recent posts.  Steve’s blog was the first that I read on a regular basis, and he was my inspiration for setting up my own blog.  I am humbled that Steve has recommended Single Cylinder Psyche to his readers, and hope that you will visit his site.  Scooter in the Sticks is many things, but I visit it mostly for its stream of thoughtful insights on life.  Thank you Steve.

This day was another in what is turning out to be a series of days that I will probably remember as the Heartland phase of the ride.  The roads seem safe, there is a continuous flow of interesting sights, and it’s fun to be on the scooter.  I’m almost giddy with the experience.  Of course there are the inevitable small challenges…when and where to find fuel, food and shelter…those things we reliably have at our disposal in our hometowns can be elusive while traveling down an unfamiliar country road.

The path was a straight shot south on Hwy 183 from Phillipsburg to Kinsley, Hwy 50 west to Dodge City, then 283 south and 60 east to my bed in Ashland.  I was interested to discover the nature of Hwy 50, the Lincoln Highway.  It was the original transcontinental highway, has much history and a sentimental connection for me.  The section I traveled was two-lane, but it was a fast and busy two lanes.  I wouldn’t choose it to go cross-country on a scooter.

Small towns value their high school sports teams more than big cities do.  They are more likely to know the players and player’s families…seems more meaningful than being attached to a professional franchise.

This is sorghum, also called milo, and is used as feed for livestock.  It’s an new crop to me.  It’s drought tolerant and seen as a more reliable but less profitable crop than corn.

Surface storage of milo because the elevators are full…

This is Josh.  He’s an articulate and friendly young man who’s been 18 years in the grain business.  He owns this machinery that is off-loading trucks from the field into long mounds of surface storage.  He is obviously enthused about his work and took the time to explain the process to me.

Some of the other things I saw in Kansas…

Each of the flagpoles represents a person from the county who has died in a foreign war.

Barbed wire is a significant part of the area’s history…

My guess is that a farmer set this up for a drive-in theater…

Over a large area, many miles, stones were used as fence posts.  The same stone material was also use in some of the buildings.




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  1. Al vallorz Al vallorz

    Move over Supermann. I found my new hero!

  2. Hi Mike! Love the photo of the field of grain with the fence running through it! Very nice!

  3. karen karen

    so glad Morgan gave me this link…. the photos and text feed us and we are so inspired.
    Thanks Mike- you set your sights on something big and then were brave enough to make it real

  4. Randy Pfyl, Concord CA Randy Pfyl, Concord CA

    Favorite pics in this set: colorful sorghum field, milo piles, 3 windmills, NY-SF 1561 miles each way mile marker, locomotive engine, also liked the barbed wire fence running lower right corner into the distance, the highway you are travelling on with fields both sides. Your postings over the last week or so, nicely documented, is well described as “the heartland phase of the ride”. All your photos are great, thanks for sharing! I see lots of rainy weather in today’s statewide New Mexico & SW. Happy travels.

  5. Just found your blog and am loving your perspective on traveling and all of the Americana that you capture! I love the stories of meeting new people and how you are taking time to enjoy the journey. Well done!

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