Some people enjoy doing things just for the sake of doing them. They find happiness in that action without any other justification required. For some, it might be horseback riding, for others perhaps crocheting or maybe gardening or knitting. For me, it’s driving.
It doesn’t matter much what kind of car it is, it’s all about the road and the experience. Small cars can be fun, big cars can be comforting, and sporty cars can be a thrill. Driving is such a passion for me that I took a job as a professional truck driver and have gone all over this great country, stem to stern. It was trucking that brought me to Wyoming.
Nowhere in the world are the roads as open, the air as fresh, and the scenery as varied as it is here. From flat plains to rolling hills to mountains, trees, desert, rocks, prairie and fields of crops, Wyoming has it. Once the place was found, staying was the obvious choice.
But staying put wasn’t. Driving is still the passion. Luckily, finding work that allowed new cars all the time – and better yet, talking about them – came along and a whole new level of driving was opened up. Not only were the wide open spaces of Wyoming available, but now wheels to put on the road were proffered.
Few things rival the joy of feeling the satisfying grumble of the diesel engine in a Volkswagen Passat TDI as you fly through the fields and graze land on highway 215 from Pine Bluffs, past the little white church outside Albin and on to Lagrange. Not many things can top puttering along the gravel and dirt roads around Curt Gowdy in an all wheel drive Subaru. Looking for antelope? Try cruising the 487 with the kids in the Mazda5 towards Casper. Prefer trees and interesting landscapes? Maybe highway 120 between Cody and Thermopolis is your style; or perhaps the 28 from Lander on down. Do it in a Cadillac XTS so you can glide.
Wherever you’re going, driving is the way to get there. Amazingly, the rest of the nation is convinced, if you care to ask, that we here in Wyoming have nothing but pickup trucks and tractors. Maybe it looks that way to an outsider who’s never left the confines of Los Angeles or the smotheration of New York, but we know better.
There’s nothing wrong with a pickup truck, an SUV, a crossover, or even a tractor. They too are fun to drive. But they aren’t all that Wyoming is.
Those who write in automotive magazines aren’t generally from around here. They think of traffic and congestion as normal things – things to be put up with on a daily basis. They merge onto the freeway at 55 and hope to hold that speed through most of their drive. Here on the Plains, we have something different. Special.
We can merge onto I-80 at 75 and stay that way until we arrive. We wave at one another as we pass because passing another car is the exception, not the norm. Picking a country road and driving for thirty miles without seeing another car is not unusual. In fact, it’s expected.
And I’d have it no other way. Here’s to Wyoming, the greatest place on earth for a driver like me.