OKC or Bust #1: Highway 40 Ride

What’s better than a road trip across the American Southwest? Last weekend, Nathan and I rolled out of Phoenix on Friday night to make our way to our new home in Oklahoma City. Our exhaustion from the logistics of the move subsided after a couple long mornings in hotels along the way, and we were invigorated by the beauty of wide open western skies.

The stretch of road between Sante Fe and I-40, heading east, was almost totally devoid of other cars, and lined with ranches and views like this that just make you want to throw your arms in the air and sing a rousing chorus of America the Beautiful.

Except for the portion of our trip between Phoenix and Flagstaff on I-17, and our small detour to Sante Fe, the entire trip to Oklahoma City from Phoenix follows I-40. It can get a little, well, straight. But we made the most of it, and soaked up moments like this. 

Of course, there’s nothing like a road trip through small town USA to cause you to stumble upon crazy little side shows, like the biggest cross in America (so the sign claimed).

Or how about this leaning water tower? Someone help it!

We spent many long hours in Nathan’s Ford pickup…which somehow seems like the perfect vehicle for this particular road trip, know what I mean? 

Reaching Amarillo, we did a little U-turn to check The Big Texan off our bucket list. How can you not stop there? It’s the epitome of American kitsch. 

No, we did not not attempt to eat the 72 ounce steak. We did, however, dive into an absolutely enormous pile of fried appetizers, including Rocky Mountain Oysters. I thought it was battered chicken at first, and ate one. GROSS.

Apparently, Texas takes it’s Bud Light pretty seriously. And we felt that while in Texas, we had to shoot…something. Out came the quarters for a little Tableau Target action. And then, on the road again…until we had to make a pit stop, where we saw this warning. 

Yikes! But across Highway 40 from this dangerous rest stop was this gorgeous view of the sun setting over some rolling hills:

Annnddd…just after sunset Sunday evening, we crossed the Oklahoma State line. Thanks Oklahoma for lighting your sign and providing me a place to rest my camera so we could get this shot! 🙂

Our new home sweet home…Oklahoma where the wind comes sweeping down the plain…



About Mosaic Collective, LLC

I am Holly Baumann Ambuehl, founding member of Mosaic Collective, LLC, which was founded in early 2017 and is based in Central Illinois. I own and operate Mosaic Collective with my partner in business and life, my husband, Nathan. Mosaic Collective, LLC houses our rental property, my consulting contracts (with the nonprofit and public sectors on various work), and also my commercial and portrait photography business, which has been doing business as Holly Baumann Photography since 2008 long before the formation of our LLC. My blog posts feature client work, but I just love to write, so I also write about owning a business, food and drink, travel, and sometimes, my personal life! I am always honored when clients trust me to capture their vision, and equally so when my readers converse with me about what I've photographed or expressed here. I hope we'll have an opportunity to collaborate professionally and/or become friends. I'd love to hear what you think! - Holly
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