The "Big Storm of '04" - Midwest chaos

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The "Big Storm of '04" did a number on the Cincinnati to Cleveland interstate highway system.  As we planned on spending Christmas in Cleveland and didn't want to deal with flying over the holidays, we got caught up driving in the "Big Storm of '04" chaos.

We ended up having to leave for Cleveland a day later than planned because our neighborhood was buried under 8 inches of snow with 2 inches of ice on top of it.  This left us on the road with a bunch of "flat landers", who truly redefined the term (let's just say that braking hard while jerking the steering wheel is standard operating procedure while driving on the ice out here).  It took us five hours to drive the first 120 miles, which works out to a 24 mile per hour average.  Think of the slowest, longest T.S.A. airport security line you've ever been in, and add 284 miles to it.

To add insult to injury, our windshield wiper fluid froze.  As anybody who has driven in wet snow with dirty salty roads will tell you, it's a pain to drive and not be able to see out of the windshield.  Can you say "let's stop at the nearest gas station", every twenty miles?

At some point we had to create games for ourselves to pass the time.  One was counting all of the cars, trucks, semi's, and plows stuck in the snow on the side of the roads (the final count was 82).  Another was reading bumper stickers, my personal favorite was "Drag racing - Because basketball, golf, football, baseball and bowling only take one ball!"

Here are some photos from an experience we never hope to repeat.

Click on the thumbnail images below to enlarge

Stuck in traffic

Tree covered in ice

He must have jerked his steering wheel and slammed his brakes.

They must have jerked their steering wheel and slammed his brakes.


Bumper sticker

Our windshield


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