Image #234 – Blown Away


Wind blown farm in central Kansas
Wind blown farm in central Kansas



The entire country has suffered from this latest bout of “weather”.  It should actually be WEATHER!!!!  So many died in Arkansas from the tornados and who can say how many others died in isolated, small incidents. There were times on Monday when I thought my van was going to be pushed right off the road. I have no doubt that some were.

I had hoped to leisurely tour Kansas and take pictures of the new season. Fields were plowed everywhere which made the dust all the more prevalent in 40-50mph winds.  Pictures were often out of the question. At one point I stopped but could not open the door!! It was a sustained gust and eventually subsided but it removed any interest I had in venturing outside.

I managed a few shots. This one show the grasses bowing before the wind and the light gave the scene an odd, Andrew Wyeth look. Clever stuff, grasses.  They can bend right down to the ground, as these did, and be back proud and tall the next day.  There’s a lot to learn from grasses.  One thing is for sure, both the grasses and the humans are ready for the winds to stop. ❧

Thunderstorms in Kansas

Tango and I are in Salina, Kansas tonight.  It has been a long short day.  I had hoped to visit the Eisenhower Museum in Abilene but the weather had other ideas. About two hours into our drive we encountered this: DSCN1810 That’s my iPad propped up on the car dashboard showing the thunder cell that descended on us as we entered Kansas City, Missouri. We were under the red section at the time. Being from Florida I thought I knew about thunderstorms but this Missouri thunderstorm was incredible. Hard, blinding rain that did not move on nearly fast enough.  I pulled off the road and parked in a hotel parking lot where I sat for almost an hour, eventually stretching out for a nap.

After the rain the winds began and have continued all day. The van, with its cargo carrier on top, was a prime target for wind gusts.  It made for an interesting day.  I was glad that I had planned a short day of driving but disappointed that I did not get to see Ike’s museum. By the time we reached Abilene it was after 4 and the museum closed at 4:45.

Still, the day was not a loss. The heartland is so beautiful right now. The vast fields are lush and green. Coming out of Topeka the road descends into the plains and for as far as you can see the countryside is a patchwork of green and brown. The winds kicked up quite a bit of dust, giving the view a hazy look that made it all the lovelier.

Tango was quite distressed and disoriented with the wind. He was not a happy camper.  The sun finally emerged and I pulled into a rest stop that was nestled into some hills. Here we were protected from the wind for a while and we sat in the sun under the redbud tree watching the traffic go by.

Tango in Kansas



…traffic that included two very large trains. It had been a long while since I had see a train but to see two in a short period time only accentuated the fact that I was in a different place.

Tomorrow we will press on to Denver. The winds are forecast to continue and a planned photo shoot on backroads in Kansas seems less appealing. I’m certain I could not live on the plains. Much too gritty for me. ❧

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