|Jeff circa 2005|
We announced V2 in the middle of the Summer but recon didn't get going until late October and with Jeff being out of the country doing an event in Japan, the actual recon fell to me. At least for the initial voyage. And that was a very memorable trip....
I made the initial trip on my own in our 1996 Toyota Camry. It was a loooooong trip out to Hawarden to get started and I had to really hump it to get as much done as I did. It was something like 270 miles just to get out there all on two lane roads, for the most part. I lived on a staple of beef jerky, Red Bull, and fruit from convenience stores along the way. There were many on the route, as I was trying to put in as many re-supply chances as I could to answer a complaint about T.I.V1's lack of stops. In fact, there was a convenience store every 40 miles or less on the T.I.V2 route! Can you believe that? It was one of the several convenience store stops that provided the standout memory for me from this recon trip.
What happened next was.........weird. There was an occupant, on the toilet, pants down, and he weighed........a lot! Gah!
I quickly shut the door and walked straight out of the place. Fortunately, there was a riparian area just south of town along the proposed route and I walked back into the woods and did my business there. But that sight! Gah! It took a long time to wipe that from my mind!
Using the "Iowa Sportsman's Atlas" for the first time was making life way easier as for finding a good route. It was, (and still is), based off the State of Iowa's DOT maps, so it was deadly accurate compared to what I used for the first Trans Iowa. I managed to get to Algona on that recon trip before I had to head back home. The weather turned sour and I missed getting into a tornado by only a few miles. The wind, rain, and lightning was intense, but finally, I made it home to live another day.
Next: The lead up to the muddy mess of Trans Iowa V2....