We woke up at the KOA in Grand Island, Nebraska, on a rainy Monday morning. We loaded everything back into the car and took I-80 West to Kearney, Nebraska, where we caught US30 West. We followed US30 West to Gothenburg, Nebraska. At that time the rain let up and it became sunny for the rest of the day.
In Gothenburg, there is an original Pony Express Station in Ehmen Park. Now it's mostly a gift shop, but it was a nice place to take a break and stretch.
While at Ehmen Park, our boys made friends with a local cat that came to check them out, named Buttons. Buttons loved having his picture taken and loved attention.
After Gothenburg, we got back onto I-80 and took it to Ogallala, Nebraska. We had lunch there at a place called Runza. Chris had a Swiss Mushroom Runza which was like hamburger meat embedded in bread about the size of a hot dog bun--very strange (see their web site if you're really curious). Katherine and the boys all had hamburgers. The kids got free ice cream cones with their meals.
From Ogallala, we took US26 West. At least once every 15 minutes we passed a train. Andy loved trying to take pictures of them as they came past.
We got to Chimney Rock National Historical Site at about 1:15 p.m. The Nebraska Historical Society has a new museum there where they have some exhibits and a short film. It's still quite a ways away from Chimney Rock, however.
We drove up the road a bit to the Chimney Rock Cemetery where there's a better observation point to see Chimney Rock. We got a picture of our family in front of it. That's about as close as they encourage the public to get to it. To get to the base of Chimney Rock from this point is a half mile walk through harsh undergrowth and snake territory. Apparently it's been eroding quite a bit over the past few decades.
While at the cemetery, Chris took this picture of a sunflower.
We got back on the road and stopped a short distance later at Scotts Bluff National Monument.
We drove the road up to the summit, and walked to the southern observation point and the northern observation point. This picture was taken looking east on the way to the southern observation point where a portion of the bluff can be seen with the town of Gering, Nebraska, in the background.
We went to the Visitor Center where they had a slide show with sound that we watched--it was surprisingly well-done for a 25-year-old slide show with taped narration. We looked at some of the displays there, and the boys each wanted stuffed prairie dog toys which we got for them.
We drove across the North Platte River into the town of Scottsbluff and to our lodging at the Comfort Inn. We were in room 215.
We went out to dinner at Shari's Restaurant, where Chris had to do another Reuben review which didn't turn out so well. Chris noted when we got our check that the line item for Katherine's order was also an apt nickname for her. Chris has always considered her a "one-chick fiesta".
We went back to the hotel and went to their indoor pool and jacuzzi before retiring for the evening.