Monday, February 8, 2016

That time we got stranded in a blizzard

Last Monday we got the sad new that Drew's grandmother had passed away. It was noon when Drew called me and had just started to snow.

As he was looking at the forecast while on the phone with me he decided we basically needed to leave right away to get to Lincoln for the visitation/ funeral because the snow we were getting (12-18 inches) was heading to Nebraska next. 

He rushed home and started packing, I threw together things for me and the kids and we picked Jasper up at 3:30 when school got out and got on the road. 

First hour or two where fine, snowing, but still good visibility and the roads were fine. 

Then we stopped after 2.5 hours for me to feed Soren and get gas and food. When we got back on the road 30 minutes later we were all of a sudden driving in a real blizzard. With basically no visibility, down to one lane because the other side of the high way had major drifting, and it was only going to get worse. 

After driving in that for a while I convinced Drew we Needed to stop. This was like 7:30 only and the storm was only going to get worse after midnight. I was honestly terrified we were going to end up in a ditch somewhere. Drew was confident in our suburban and his driving to keep going but his brother and sister in law who were behind us were stopping so he was finally convinced.

We ended up in a little hotel in Ogallala, Nebraska with a pool, my only requirement in case we got stuck there a while. 

Drew's brother/sil were only 30 or so miles behind us, but after we pulled over it got even worse and it took them almost 2 hours to catch up! Absolutely horrible driving conditions. 

The next day while we were waiting to hear how the roads were (we had heard there were some closures) the kids swam and had a blast. 

Finally we decided to check out and get on the road even though they weren't amazing, but much better during day time. We got like 60 miles...and then the high way was just closed down. Police blocking the road saying we needed to exit- and all on ramps blocked. I seriously didn't know this was a thing, that they could just literally shut down the roads. Well, in Nebraska they do. 

So once again we were stranded, but in a slightly bigger town with a much newer/nicer hotel. Drew even managed to get us upgraded to the family suite, so the big kids slept in bunk beds in their own room.

The kids swam some more, and then the next day we waited around for the  interstate to open up. When we realized it wasn't going to, Drew found a bunch of back roads to get us to Lincoln. That trip should have been about 3 hours and instead it took almost 7. Finally, more than 50 hours after we left Denver we made it to Lincoln, normally a 7 hour drive.

Probably the most eventful road trip we've ever done (though sadly not the first time I've been stranded in Nebraska due to a storm) Thank God for amazing little travelers! 

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