We gathered at 7:30AM on Wednesday for our daily driver's meeting. Everyone was still buzzing about our visit at Speedway Motors and the incredible Smith Collection of American Racing Museum. We had all also enjoyed the previous evening's cruise and poker run in Hays. There are so many similar evenings spent around the country each summer and it really gave us all a little feeling of home. Thanks again to everyone in Hays who made us feel so welcome.
On tap for Wednesday morning was something that almost every car guy and gal loves to do. We were headed for an old wrecking yard. Wagner and Son's Colby wrecking yard was started in 1939 by Chuck, Dave and Paul Wagoner's father. My wife Mary Ann and I had spotted it in 1997 when we were traveling to Pueblo in he McMullen Roadster clone. It had been closed when we stopped but I had always remembered the rolling hillsides covered with cars. When the Golden RODtronics Tour route route was laid out and I realized that we would be near Colby, Kansas I decided to check into getting a look at the yard. Harold Bettis our new Roadtourian friend from Hays had seen Chuck Wagoner at a rod run earlier in May. Harold spoke to Chuck about the possibility of a Road Tour stop in Colby. Chuck, who owns among many other vehicles, two very sharp Cadillac street rods, said sure we could visit the yard and the plan was set in motion. The short 90 minute run from Hays to Colby was a perfect morning drive. The road was smooth, the temps were still bearable and the sun was rising to our back. Combine all that with the anticipation of a 60 acre wrecking yard and we were all smiling ear to ear.
We arrived at the Colby Wrecking yard and were greeted by Chuck and Paul Wagoner. They appreciated our street rods and had made some special provisions for our visit. Waiting for us were four pick-up trucks and we all climbed into the beds and began a one hour tour that was unbelievable. As we drove through the yard we looked like tourists on an African safari, pointing and calling out the names of the cars as we passed by row after row of cars from the 30's 40' 50's and 60's. These cars and bodies were very solid. Not the rusted hulks that we find back in the Midwest but vehicles that had traveled on salt free Kansas roads before finding their resting place in Colby. It was truly amazing. The folks at Wagoner's and Sons were great. Before you jump in your flatbed truck and head to Colby please keep a few things in mind. Yes, the cars are for sale. Yes, the brothers are fully aware of the treasures they have and the current market values. They do not sell pieces and parts off these vehicles. They sell only complete cars. The yard is open for business but not as a tourist attraction. Because of insurance regulations they do not permit folks to wander around the hillsides. If you are looking for a specific year and make they have an incredible knowledge of what is in the yard. By the way, the majority of the cars were from the 40's and no there are not any '32 '33 and '34 Ford bodies laying around. Thanks so very much to the folks at Wagoner and Sons for sharing their part of heaven with all of us on the Road Tour.
After some lunch in Coby were set out for our evening's destination of Golden, Colorado and the facilities of our Tour sponsor Golden RODtronics. Owner Dave Kopser had traveling with us earlier in the week and had gone ahead to prepare for an evening of food and fun at Golden RODtronics. It was a great time with excellent BBQ and a look at the products that GoldenRODtronics provides our hobby including their famous W.I.D.E. contacts and remote systems. While rain threatened us a little, besides a very brief sprinkle and some major claps of thunder it was a great evening at Golden RODtronics. Thank to Dave for supporting the Road Tour and being such a gracious host.
Thursday morning we stopped in Colorado Springs for some shopping in the Old Colorado City area and a group lunch at Meadow Muffins restaurant . Many folks spent some time at the beautiful Garden of the Gods park and view the beautiful rock formations.
By mid-afternoon we had arrived at our final destination of the NSA Rocky Mountain Nationals in Pueblo. While the weather was warm the skies were clear. The Street Rodder Road Tour hospitality tent was the center of activity all weekend at the fairgrounds. We recounted the adventures of the previous week with each other and shared our stories with all who stopped by to chat. It was a great week on the Golden RODtronics Tour from Back to the 50's in St Paul to the Rocky Mountain Nationals in Colorado. All of us have some great stories and memories of our trip, besides the fellow Roadtourins we have come to know.
For me it is a solo trip back to Ohio. Next up is the Coker Tour to the Syracuse Nationals. I am looking forward to about ten days at home with Mary Ann and some time at my favorite spot on the planet: my own backyard.
Check back, the 2008 edition is only half over. There is lots more Road Tour adventures to cover.