Farm Collector Blogs > Aussie Trek Across America

July 13 to 14: Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky

by Ron Bywaters

Tags: road trip, trek across America, tractor drive, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky,

Day 17

We were packed up and away from the campground at 7:20 a.m. Monday after four memorable days at the Penfield Historic Field Days.

After the crowds and the many stalls and exhibits, it was strange to see the area almost completely desolate, just tracks where the parade had traveled and the few like ourselves who were making their departure.

Travel arrangements do not always go to plan — it had been decided to “make some miles” to allow more time for sightseeing in Nashville, Tenn. All was progressing more or less to plan when the traffic turned into a car-park as a result of a fatal accident some mile or so in front of us. For two and a half hours the only progress was to replace those vehicles which had turned around! When the road was eventually reopened, our group was separated and the front-runners continued on to Bedford, Ind., while three vehicles diverted to Heltonville, Ind., where we had a RV park booking at a picturesque national park forest. To end the day off, one of our tractors had a flat tire!

The good news of the day was that Jeff’s 9G had made a full recovery and was heading toward us, expecting to catch up in a day or so. Wendy and Jeff Fordham and Jeff Smith arrived from Australia near the end of our stay at Penfield, and Jeff and Cumber were able to organize a lift back to Stryker where the tractor had been undergoing repairs. We look forward to having a full contingent of five tractors again very soon.

Day 18

Those of us who had stayed at Heltonville made the trip into Bedford to catch up with the balance of the crew at the Wal-Mart store.

Morning tea seemed like a good idea, and soon it was 10:30 and we were late getting underway. A quick trip to Paoli and a chance to check out the best route options with Joe, a local sherriff. This conference resulted in the choice of Route 150 which was a two-lane road with fairly heavy traffic. This necessitated many stops to prevent the backlog of traffic and the day was suddenly behind schedule.

The route was scenic down 31 West, but the weather was very hot and we were all very glad to reach our chosen destination of Cave City, Ky., quite late in the day. Word from Cumber and Jeff was that they camped up for the night and should catch up Wednesday.

See photos and read more on Ron’s website,