Day 1

Trip Start Jun 23, 2007
Trip End Jun 30, 2007

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Flag of United States  , Missouri
Saturday, June 23, 2007

     Up at 6AM, then arrived at my Mother's in Independence, Missouri.  Helped her load up her Jeep and we were out the door and on our way at about 9AM. 
     What a gorgeous day it turned out to be!  The sky was blue and partly cloudy, with a high temp of about 90 degrees.  The land of Kansas is much more beautiful than some might think.  Rolling green hills with scattered trees and groves, old rustic farms, fields full of hay bails, and windmills. LOTS of them!  We even seen our share of wildlife, in the form of hundreds of baby toads crossing the highway (though many met an untimely demise under our tires).
     The SFT (Santa Fe Trail) begins in New Franklin Missouri near Columbia.  We began our trip in Independence, where a few other pioneer trails begin, such as the Oregon Trail.  From Independence, it follows along I-35 and I-56 in a southwest direction.
     We visited my Aunt Lisa and cousin A.J...they were doing a trade craft show in Edgerton, Kansas.  Then had lunch at Hays House, the OLDEST restaurant west of the Mississippi, in historic Council Grove, Kansas.  What a fascinating town!  Over 10 historical sites...we visited a couple monuments, then met up with my Aunt Jackie and her family in Larned, Kansas.
    I met my new cousin, Taylor Phoenix, the adorable newborn of Jannifer and Donnie.  We also caught a few songs by a live band at the coffee shop in Larned.  Finally we reached our hotel in Dodge City, feeling totally exhausted and relieved.  But were all anxious about tommorrow!
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