Day 9 (Tue, May 7)
Start: Corydon, IN
End: Evansville, IN
Miles Driven: 157
Total Miles: 1,422
Today’s journey was filled with quiet back roads and spectacular sights. Just the way we like it!
We started the morning at our hotel with the free breakfast. While there’s nothing spectacular about a free breakfast at a hotel, the automatic pancake maker was cool. It was like a pancake “printer”. You push a button, and a minute or two later, it pushes out a pancake similar to the way a laser printer pushes out a printed sheet. The second pancake follows soon after. Okay, so they weren’t the BEST pancakes ever. But hey, it was more fun than the make-your-own-waffler machines at most breakfast buffets. 🙂
So, on to the spectacular portions of our day. After the pancake printer, we went to the Marengo Cave–a U.S. Historic Landmark. These limestone caves were discovered by a couple of kids in 1883 and were soon opened for tours. We went on a 40-minute guided tour of the “Crystal Palace” area of the cave. Since it was early and a Tuesday, we got a private tour. The pictures below don’t do the cave justice. Luckily, the bats had retreated to a lower level. 🙂 We were glad that we decided to visit the Cave…had I felt a bit better, we might have passed on the opportunity rather than stopping in Corydon. So, perhaps my cold had a purpose after all!!
Marengo Cave entrance to the Crystal Palace tour
Stalactites and Stalagmites in the Marengo Cave
Marengo Cave Pipe Organ area. Weddings have been held here!
We packed up and left the hotel after returning from the cave and headed out for the open road. We decided to continue on the Ohio River Scenic Byway, which traversed Route 62 (the George Rogers Clark Trail) and Route 66 in Indiana. This route took us through the Southern half of the Hoosier National Forest. Rolling hills and a quiet, two-lane byway through this forest enabled us to take a leisurely and scenic tour of Indiana that I would never have imagined. I only thought of Indiana as flat corn country; the drive through Hoosier National Forest showed me trees and meadows, hills and valleys that were a surprise and a delight. We seldom saw another car as we snaked through this lush, green terrain. It was a discovery drive at its best.
Rte 66 Indiana – Ohio River Scenic Byway
This is the way we like to roll!
Along the way, we wound inland and back to the mighty Ohio, skimming by and driving through small towns and vacation spots, farmland and homesteads. We also went by a very impressive structure–the Cannelton Lock and Dam–as well as a slightly disturbing (too many bad movies) nuclear power plant.
Cannelton Lock and Dam
Rockport Nuclear Power Plant: Am I glowing?
The Ohio River Scenic Byway ROCKS!
As the hour grew later, we decided to stop at the outskirts of Evansville, Indiana. We’re settled here for the night and will head through the Shawnee National Forest, and perhaps the Mark Twain National Forest, tomorrow.
Today was a good travel day for the dogs as well. Jasmine’s tummy problems seem to be improving, and both dogs seem much more comfortable in the car. In fact, they seem to be more comfortable with each other as well. All this togetherness is good for them!
This trip is becoming a bonding experience for Jasmine and Juliet