9/24/01 4:04:36 PM Pacific Daylight Time
I'm in Cimarron KS staying at Cimarron Crossing, a quaint bed & breakfast. Built in 1907 along the Santa Fe Trail, you can still see covered wagon ruts nearby. The house is an old 2 story house fancy for its time with leaded glass and etched glass windows. My room is called the Arizona Room and is upstairs with my own bathroom. The room is decorated in white & green and the bathroom has an old clawfoot tub. Staying here has really been enjoyable.
The Santa Fe Trail was established by trader & explorer Jedediah Smith. It was a trade trail 780 miles long. During the 1850's, a wagon trail usually consisted of 24 wagons drawn by 10 oxen or mules. The heavy cumbersome wagons only covered around 17 miles a day. In addition to trade goods, each wagon train carried about 70 lbs of supplies per man. It took approx 50 days to reach Santa Fe.
Now for a little bit of current history: Joan, the lady at the b&b, drove me 12 miles south to show me a new crop they're planting in western Kansas: Wind farms. Y'know the big wind mills you see up on the hills in California? Well now they're spreading to Kansas. They're in the process of erecting 170 towers and have so far finished around 50. The windmill tower is tall & skinny with 3 blades connected at the top that look like an airplane propellor. The tower stands 207 ft high, and the tip of the blade is approx 300 ft high. The blades measure 77 ft long and weigh 3,300 lbs each. Each tower produces around 660 kilowatts, and costs $1.5M to construct. When all 170 units are completed, it will produce enough energy to power 32,000 Kansas homes.
Kansas is ranked 3rd in the US for wind energy potential (TX & ND produce more.) This kind of crop produces energy with no emissions and will always be an indigenous energy source.
Today (mon) I was able to give 3 talks to 3 freshman classes at Cimarron High School. I really enjoyed that. Tomorrow (tues) I'm wallking 16 miles to Dodge City and hopefully will be able to talk at their schools. I'll be staying at some peoples house tu & we night in Dodge City.
Y'all take care and have a great day! KB
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