Travels, Return From Blue Bunny Retreat, 2010

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Sunrise on US 69. =0= Prison on US 69. =0=
Thursday morning I left of Bloomington, IN, a long drive for a day. I left before sunrise after showering (leaving my breakfast and calisthenics as breaks along the way). Oklahoma seems to be the king of tool roads with most ofr their freeways being toll roads. As a result I took US 69 to I44 and Joplin, MO rather than the slightly quicker (but longer) route of I35 to Oklahoma City and I44 thereby avoiding most of the tolls. I could have skipped Oklahoma altogether, but decided to compromise and pay a couple of dollars in tolls. On 69 I was able to see a nice sunrise and a prison (above). US69 was more direct and a divided highway (as shown here) most of the way. There was also a nice lake that it passed through (below). US 69. =0=

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Lake on US 69. =0=
OK Turnpike Entrance. =0= OK Turnpike. =0=
The Oklahoma toll roads are most confusing. At first they seem very simple; you come to a toll plaza (above) and pay the requested amount. However, they don't collect tolls every few miles like the Garden State Parkway. Instead when you get to the first toll plaza you are given a receipt for what you paid and if you get off early (or got on late as was my case), then you present your receipt at the next toll plaza to get a refund or skip that toll. Most confusing! I over paid, probably almost as much as I would have paid if I had done the full toll road route. However, when I sent an email to the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority and asked how I would get the appropriate refund, they simply got my address and promised me a check. At least that part was easy! Then I took I44 across Missouri to St. Louis, crossed the Mississippi into Illinois (below on I270) and took I70 on through Inidiana (below) to Bloomington, IN. Below is the sunset I saw on I70 as my drive continued into the evening. I44 Missouri. =0=
Bridge over Mississippi. =0= I70 Illinois. =0=
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This page was last updated on April 16, 2010.