Today started early. I got a pretty good night's sleep, but woke a little after 0400, and finally got out of bed about 0430. I took the time to do some organizing and got rid of the trash I had in my pack.
Steve had suggested starting at 0500, but the rest of us looked unhappy, so Dan suggested we be checked out and ready to leave by 0600. I took my stuff out to the truck at 0530, and Dan already had his loaded. We had a banana and some yogurt, and pretty soon the others showed up.
On the way out of town, we stopped at a gas station about 0600, and the price was up to $2.59.9. That's about what it averaged everywhere till we got near San Antonio. Most places would be out of either premium or diesel; we never pulled into a place that didn't have regular.
Like the earlier drive, the breaks and lunch were longer than I usually took. It again took about 15 hours to get back. We stopped at a Whattaburger for lunch. This one was larger than the earlier one, and somewhat less crowded. We still had to park outside of the regularly marked spots. And they lost Ken's order. He waited 15 or 16 minutes before going up to ask. Then he got his money back.
Except for the Las Cruces to El Paso stretch, the interstate was pretty empty. Nice driving. At least until it got dark. Then it was 80 mph on curvy, hilly roads in deer country. Going into Durango after dark, the speed limit was only about 65. I really didn't want to hit a deer at 80 mph.
The group split up about 10:00 pm for the last half hour home. The others had to go down I-10 past an Interstate closure (a bridge was being torn down). I had to go across Highway 46. I made it home a little after 10:30, after going through a McDonalds drive-thru where the cashier did not understand what a value meal was. Sigh...
I'll post my thoughts and gear and a planning post as soon as I can.