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This day was a travel day from Idaho Falls, ID to Mountain Home, ID, a distance of just over 200 miles. Short day, into the hotel early, smooth sailing on low traffic roads.
Or so Sal and I thought. The only part that proved correct was the low traffic part.
It was raining lightly when we pulled out of Idaho Falls. It started raining a lot harder as we left the city limits. We drove in and out of rain for the next hour or so. Stopped in Arco, ID for a “pit stop” and a drive thru the nation’s first city powered by nuclear energy.
Rained off and on for the next two hours of so with a few sun breaks. Got to see some beautiful countryside when it wasn’t raining. We were moving toward a very large storm that looked like it was passing to the north and would be gone by the time we got to where it was.
When we hit the edge of the storm it was raining so hard we could barely see the road ahead. It was in the mid-30s outside and we could see ice in the stuff hitting the windshield. A truck passed us with fresh snow on the windshield. I thought to myself “uh-oh, trouble ahead”.
A mile or so further and the rain turned to sleet/snow mix, rapidly accumulating on the road. The stuff hitting the windshield sounded like thousands of BBs. Couldn’t see more than 25 yards or so. Everyone in our lane slowed to about 25mph and cautiously maintained the distance between our vehicles. We drove in this for about 30 minutes. Trucks passing in the other lane threw up a heavy slushy spray that left us temporarily “blind”. We witnessed numerous lightning strikes before and during the storm, something unusual in a snow storm.
We slogged on thru the mess. As we reached the edge of the storm we also started rapidly losing altitude and before long emerged into bright sunshine.
This was our 3rd wicked storm on this trip. Hope it’s the last.
Event in Mountain Home today, our next-to-last one.