Today we made the trip home from Mena, Arkansas. We started out headed east towards Hot Springs, then turned more northeast to travel through the Ouachita forest high in the Ouachita Mountains. We headed back west at Russellville, then north at Clarksville for a final ride through the Ozark mountains before heading home. (seeing our day reduced to a paragraph gives no scope of time; this ride took 343 miles and eight solid hours of riding on a motorcycle!)
As we rode west from Russellville to Clarksville, we passed by Arkansas Nuclear One, Arkansas' nuclear power plant. Highway 64, the road we were on, passes right by the entrance and serves as the official evacuation route should a disaster occur.
It made my husband and I laugh to realize this was the THIRD evacuation route we've been on in our travels together!
The first evac route was in Georgia, on highway 80 from Tybee Island to Savannah. That one is a hurricane evacuation route. Our first time there we were chaperoning eight gymnasts from land-locked Missouri for a morning at the beach to see and swim in the ocean. You can bet they picked up on the evacuation route signs first thing!
Our second evac route was in Washington on highway 410 on the way out of Mount Rainier National Park. This one was an evacuation route in case of volcano eruption! To us, the threat of eruption seemed real enough. You see, we visited the park on a clear, cloudless day, a rarity in the area, we were told. The park ranger at Sunrise Peak told us the small "clouds" over Mount Rainier were actually volcano puffs, called pyrocumulus clouds, caused from the intense heat of the volcano and the presence of moisture over the volcano. Moreover, we were told that Mount Rainier is an ACTIVE volcano, currently at rest between eruptions. The last eruption of this particular volcano was 1894-1895, so I'd say they are probably due!
We are very glad to be home where we do not have to worry about evacuation routes!