No, this is not modern art. It's the salt flats on the way into the Salt Lake City airport.
There is no more beautiful scenery than that of the American Far West.
It's August but we're looking at snow down below.
As we flew eastward from Salt Lake to North Dakota I could see crevices similar to the Grand Canyon and the begining of some clouds.
There was more snow-capped mountains but also more clouds.
Soon there were lots of little clouds.
Then there were just lots of clouds. I didn't like the looks of this.
However, as we approached Bismarck, I saw some blue skies and a beautiful scene down below.
The colors and the topography were gorgeous.
There seemed to be a lot going on down below.
This is the Bismarck National Airport.
This is 50% of the terminal's boarding area. No, this is not a large airport but it is brand new and beautiful.
There was a beautiful blue sky day in Bismarck, North Dakota. Oops! Actually this is an indoor shot of the ceiling at the Bismarck National Airport. Can you see the sprinklers?
They have just three rental car companies here and none of them will rent you a car without an advance reservation.
Tonto assured me it would take just 90.2 miles to get from the airport to the track. That was important since I had only 200 “free” miles per day with my rental car.
In the summer they work full-time on the roads in places with harsh winter climates.
We would be in for a bumpy.......
and slow ride.
Does that look like rain to you?
I'll be back at Thanksgiving to get this guy.
Hay is big business on the high plains of North Dakota.
The beautiful road side scenery is one of the things I like about trackchasing. Doesn't it look like you can just reach out and touch some of those clouds.
This looks like it just rained here to me.
I'm going too where the little green balloon is on this map. It looks like I will miss the rain if it moves east and not south.
I had never seen the weather change so quickly in my life.
Out one side of the car it looked fine and out the other it looked like a tornado could come my way any minute.
I guess the sunflowers are used to make “sunflower seed oil” right?
That's a lot of sunflowers.
More road work.
North Dakota has its share of rolling hills.
Just 33 miles from the track the weather looked good.
The little chruch on the prairie! It looks like it's been remodeled. However, there doesn't seem like there's much protection from the elements.
As Tonto shows, I'm less than 30 miles from the track and it's getting cloudy.
Now it's getting sunny. This may be my favorite photo of the trip.
These photos are being shown to you in sequence. That's how fast the weather was changing.
I liked this weather the best.
Stop with the good weather, bad weather stuff!
Do you see the rainbow? It's in the center of this photo.
I'm withn a mile or two of the track now. I think I'm home free with the weather.
I pulled in at 7:15 p.m. just as the track's ambulance was arriving. Look at those clear skies. Racing is scheduled to begin in 15 minutes.
They've got a golf course next to the track....and some mean looking clouds to the north.
At this point, I made a left and headed toward the grandstands.
However, when I arrived at the grandstand, the rain did too.
The rain began at 7:23 p.m. just seven minutes before the races were scheduled to begin.
Then the rain stopped! Maybe I would get this track in afterall.
Tonight they were having a special trailer race. That's a trailer?
These folks distributed the pit passes.
The cars were out packing the track after the first rain hit. It looked like the storm was moving off to the southeast.
This was going to be close with the weather.
Oh no! These clouds were coming right for us.
The boys in the pits looked toward the skies.
There was a field of about 40 cars for tonight's races.
I'm standing inside a racecar hauler for this shot. The cars are returning to the infield after more rain hits.
This is Dusty Kollman, driver of the Allstar Performance street stock. He has just driven his car into the hauler to get out of the rain.
These are low-dollar racers out for a good time.
The rain had not been that heavy and the skies were clearing.
Soon the drivers started going back on the track to get it in racing shape. Is that a rainbow just beyond the turn?
These cars were helping dry turns one and two as the sun became to set in the west.
I thought I liked what I was seeing.
If only the track has some more equipment to remove a few inches of the really wet stuff.
I've seen worse options.
Not every car was willing to get muddy trying to dry the track.
There were legends racing tonight. One of the four co-promoters was driving this one.
We came very close to getting this show in tonight.
It had stopped raining but......
It was just too wet. They pulled the plug and canceled.
Rod Palmer and I retired to the track's concenssion area. I went with the bacon cheeseburger, which was delicious.
The racers and fans had to be disappointed with tonight's rainout. I was.
There was no “tonner” for me tonight just my first rainout of 2009.