June 3rd and 4th were dedicated to putting on some significant eastward miles but we also needed some breaks in driving. We avoided Interstates and drove along US 412 which gave us the flavor of rural america. Our first stop was in Capulin, NM at Capulin Volcano NP which gave us the opportunity to drive up to the crater rim and hike the circumference 1300 feet up from ground level for a total elevation at 8800 ft. Boy is Oklahoma rural – especially in the panhandle and central – flat, oil rigs and bugs (needed to clean or windshield every twenty minutes). Another stop was the Marland Mansion & Estate in Ponca City. Earnest Marland at one time controlled over 10% of the worlds oil supply – too bad JP Morgan ousted him in a hostile takeover. Eastern Oklahoma was a pleasant change – lakes and green hills. Then through northern Arkansas which was a beautiful ride along ridge lines and rolling hills dotted with farms and stunning views. Ended the day in Poplar Bluff MO. with a “Fishin’ Pig” dinner.
Capulin Volcano NP
Marland Mansion & Estate