Sunday, August 23, 2009

Kearney, Nebraska - Day 4

Mr. Toad was feeling neglected because we'd left him in the driveway for the past three days, so we took him out to visit with some of his larger relations

and also to visit the Tin Man.

Kearney is a major crossroads on the Union Pacific Railroad system. Over 130 trains per day pass through here, most either carrying coal from Wyoming to the east or empty cars back to Wyoming. Imagine a 120 car train rumbling by as you sit at a RR crossing waiting for it to pass.
Assuming half of the trains are eastbound full ones, that's 7,800 cars per day, each carrying about 100 tons (see car capacity below), that comes out to 780,000 tons of coal per day. Think about how much CO2 that puts into the atmosphere!

On a more positive note, we visited the Rowe Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary, famous for the migration of the Sandhill Cranes every February-April. We enjoyed the beauty of the area and visited a blind where visitors can view the cranes in season. Diana is a guide so she gave us the tour explained all about the cranes, peaking our desire to visit when the cranes are migrating.

No, this isn't an oxymoron; it's just pointing to where the cranes can be seen.

We stopped by Fort Kearny, which was a stop on the Pony Express and Oregon Trail.
Mr. Toad was surprised to see that there were cabriolets before there were MINIs.
Karen, this picture is for you.

Rob checks out his atlas with the help of Phoebe!

We left Kearney with an appreciation of the pioneers and the hardships they endured as they crossed the prairie for a new start on the west coast. We were very impressed with Kearney and all it offers residents in the way of both history and culture.

This was absolutely the best B&B we have every visited! The food and wine were the best and the service was over the top. We will definitely always remember this visit and the hospitality of the Luschers.