Despite the COVID panic going on, my husband and I chose to go off on a road trip to see family. Though we had initial plans to head up to Yellowstone after visiting with family, we decided to hatchet that part of the plan and just concentrate on family. Most of our family is thrilled to have us visit. Since the two of us will be moving in a year or two, we started loading up the truck with some of the stuff that needs to go back to our offspring -- purging, so to speak. So the back of our truck is filled with stuff again.
I will try to include some information about COVID-19 prevention in our daily reports.
DAY 1 - HOME to RICHFIELD, UT - 604 miles, 10+ hours
What a smooth first day this was! We were out the door right at our scheduled time, truck loaded and out the driveway. We headed out to I-15 and then north. It was still dark at this time and we could see that traffic was slightly heavier heading south (for whatever reason) than it seemed to be heading north.
Cajon Pass is usually full of construction and traffic. But we summited with ease this time, pulling over in Hesperia into a parking lot to grab something out of the back end of the truck. Our next stop was just past Barstow, for breakfast. We chose Peggy Sue's 50s Diner, because it would be open for breakfast and was not a chain. It was excellent! All staff were wearing masks and gloves, and they had social distancing in place in a fun way -- every other table was "Reserved for XXX" (XXX being the name of a 50s or 60s celebrity that is long gone, such as John Wayne, James Dean). The diner barstools were all closed off in the same manner. Loved the way they did that in keeping with the theme of the restaurant.
We kept barreling through after breakfast. Both rest areas between Yermo and the NV/CA state line were open, which is almost unheard of! We utilized the second one, and most people using the rest area were wearing masks. Moving on, we flowed through Las Vegas smoothly and noticed how much less traffic there was despite the fact that some of the Strip has officially opened.
Our next stop was for fuel on the Moapa Indian Reservation. I'd called up there ahead of time so that we wouldn't be surprised by a closure, but the reason for stopping there was to avoid urban areas as well as a much better price for fuel! Once again, most folks were wearing masks, though I only went into the building to use the facilities and went right back out.
One of my favorite areas on this leg of the trip was the Virgin River Gorge in the 29.5 miles of I-15 that goes through Arizona. However, some of it was under construction, which makes it less enjoyable. It was also starting to get later in the morning so the heat was setting in. We'd already turned on the AC between Primm (CA/NV state line) and Las Vegas.
Next stop was at the Kanarraville Rest Area, where it was a bit cooler and we took a few to really stretch our bodies. Then we went on in to Richfield.
For a number of years now, we've stayed at the Quality Inn there in Richfield whenever planning to stay overnight there. We had no issues with social distancing there or anywhere that day, really. The place was super clean. The staff was behind a partition and didn't wear masks, which surprised me, but some did when they went out to a different area. We had the pool to ourselves.
Later, we walked next door to Steve's Steakhouse. We'd never eaten there, and decided to give it a try. We had to give our names and a phone number "for the health department". (When I asked why, the Health Dept insists on that so that they can track who had contact with a given person that could contract CV-19. Okay, I guess.) Everyone was wearing masks and gloves, required of food service in that county in UT. Where there were booths, every other one was taped off. Where there were tables, some were moved out. We had an excellent meal whose prices were on par for Richfield.
We crashed quite early that night.