Best part of the day: After ride meal
Worst part of the day: Crosswinds (this is getting redundant)
Distance: 52 miles Riding Time: 4hrs 55min
Bed count: 18 Sleeping Bag count: 16
It was a nasty storm that blew over Groom and the surrounding areas last evening. We watched the radar and part of the radar’s “red area” was right over Groom! We heard the thunder and saw the flashes of lightning!! The rain was pretty heavy!
This morning, the overcast skies which we’d had the last four mornings was replaced by a sea of blue!! (Getting ready to head out this morning. This motel has only about 13 rooms. We were in #11.)
We had fairly light south winds as we got on our way around 8:30. On the way out of town, we had to take a picture of Groom’s other notable tourist draw, the “Leaning Tower of Texas”. It’s a tilted water tower right alongside of I-40!
Again, we were once more on the Route 66 frontage road out of Groom for almost 12 miles. It was a very decent road. The pretty much flat road we’ve had for the last couple of days was replaced by some easy rollers just after entering I-40 for a number of miles. We came upon a freeway rest stop who’s exit sign had an unusual addition to it, at least for us Californians!(See the what’s below the “Vending Machines” sign??)
Made a stop at the gas station/convenience store in the village of Alanreed. Picked up a couple of egg, sausage, and pancake breakfast sandwiches along with a couple of drinks. We wrapped the sandwiches in napkins and warmed them up in the store’s microwave. Some of the napkin got “stuck” onto one of the pancakes of Rob’s sandwich! Tried to peel as much off as possible. Napkins have good fiber, right??!!(Outside of the Alanreed multi-faceted convenience store.)
There was also a motel and a nearby RV park. The RV Park was a place we were considering for camping had we pushed beyond Groom. Seeing the motel there was a surprise. We inquired about the motel and the store’s clerk said that the owner was not renting any of the half dozen or so rooms because she had broken her back in 5 places!! Ouch!!
Returned to the frontage road out of Alanreed where the road went from nice to crappy. That lousy chip seal which we’d first encountered coming into Adrian a few day was back! Fortunately for not too long. Then it changed to a concrete surface! We guess Texas likes concrete for a road surface.
The next town through which we rode was McLean. Another small town who’s impact of the interstate was also quite visible like those from back in Tucumcari and other previous towns.(On the westbound main street in McLean.)
(Further along Route 66 towards Shamrock another victim of the interstate.)
We finally rode into the town of Shamrock where we had earlier reserved a room at the Shamrock Country Inn as the weather forecast had once again showed afternoon thunderstorm showers! A simple motel with a very nice manager!
He gave us a couple of dinner location recommendations. Got cleaned up and we opted for the burger place, Shamrock Hasty’s Inc, about a mile’s ride away. We both had a couple of great, huge burgers: Fay a Hickory burger and Rob a double cheese burger; cookies-n-cream shakes, fries and onion rings. So good! Fay felt that was the best burger she’d ever had!! Got a chance to chat with the store’s owner, too (well, he said is wife is actually the owner!). He’s one of the town’s police officers, as well as a corrections officer and also does some mechanic work!! Does he even have time to sleep? He said that he’s home every night! It’s a small town of about 2,000 and he’s a Shamrock native who returned home a number of years away.
The town’s grocery store was also right next door. Popped in for a few things (got to have dessert, right??). On the ride back to the motel, stopped for pictures at a neat, old Conoco gas station which has been turned into a visitor center and gift shop!
Right next to it was an old Army ambulance, like the one’s seen in the TV show M*A*S*H. It had a sign saying “thank a Vet”.
We talked with Rob’s brother back at the motel. He wanted to see what day we’d be arriving at his place as well as providing us with weather updates. We passed along the upcoming towns where we’re thinking of staying before his place and he let us know the severe weather probabilities for those days.
Tomorrow, our ride to Elk City will have us crossing into our 5th state, Oklahoma. We’ll cross the 1,500-mile mark as well as completing our 5th week on this trip!! Wow! Five weeks already! It doesn’t seem like it.
Until our next post….