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655 Good Exits 2012-05-07

Clines Corner Restrooms

Continuing on the drive, we entered Oklahoma. Our goal was to make it through Oklahoma City before the evening rush hour. We barely made it and lost only a few minutes of time.

One of the advantages of traveling the same route over and over again is - you discover where the good exits are located. We travel simply. We want to be able to get on and off the interstate with ease, find competitive gas prices and at the same gas station find windshield cleaning stations, clean restrooms, and fountain drinks (preferably in large sizes.) Our stop time is less than 15 minutes and is usually closer to 10 minutes. We generally do not eat, but enjoy being tempted. Finally, the employees working at the station, should be friendly, courteous, and helpful - after all they are working in the service industry :-)

Our normal route to the western mountains is through Colorado on Interstate 70. We are very familiar with all the exits. In fact we time our stops to take advantage of the good proven exits. We have also traveled Interstates - 10, 40, 70, and 90, but not nearly as often. On the unfamiliar roads it is a craps shoot every time we make an exit.

After bad stops in west Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Texas - we were beginning to think that there were no good stops on Interstate 40. Some of the restrooms were so bad, I was afraid to wash my hands in the sinks (for fear that I would have to touch something.) Aftet the stop, I would instead clean my hands with a handy wipe - and I'm not even much of a germaphobe!

Eventually, we made it to Texas and spent the night in Amarillo. Approaching the town there was a huge cowboy on a billboard. He was the "Big Texan" and was advertising the world famous, "Steak Ranch". The large parking area to the Texas sized restaurant was overflowing with dinner patrons. Oh, and by the way, Ray, it is home of the 72 ounce steak.

Leaving Amarillo we crossed west Texas and entered New Mexico. Soon, numerous signs appeared for a particular exit, Clines Corner. Each billboard stated the miles left to travel and advertised a specific feature of Clines Corner. Oh, they had trinkets, souvenirs, t-shirts, gas, food, beverages, ice cream, and the largest and cleanest restrooms on Interstate 40. Hmm, the largest and cleanest restrooms, we decided that we had to stop.

The outside of Clines Corner looked like any large souvenir/restaurant/gas stop, but the first thing we checked out were the restrooms. They were indeed very large. In fact, they were probably larger than most rest area restrooms; but that was not all - it truly was deluxe and shined. I would think that it would have qualified to be in any four star hotel and if it had attendants it would have rivaled a five star. It was that good.

After our break we drove on to Albuquerque and began our visit with Amy's brother Paul and his wife, Marilyn.

More soon, but if you are traveling across Interstate 40 and want to experience a really good exit, stop at Cline's Corner, New Mexico. I would also imagine that the Big Texan was also good, but I am a vegetarian and it really looked more entertaining than tasty to me.

Happy Good Exit trails


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