Adventures on the road

I’ve been on a lot of road trips covering Wisconsin for The Capital Times, but the opening four weeks of this season will be memorable for a lot of reasons.

I saw Boston College raise its national championship banner, then made an amazing drive to New Hampshire the next day, marveling at the fall colors along the way.

I made the trip to Denver the next weekend for the WCHA opener and spent some time roaming Denver’s impressive campus in amazing weather.

And this weekend, I’m wearing a light jacket in Grand Forks at the start of November. But it’s not the weather or the games I’ll remember from this one. It’s how I got here.

I was a bit skeptical about taking the Amtrak train, a 12-hour journey each way, but with that trip saving my paper about $300, it wasn’t a tough decision — go Amtrak or don’t go at all, I guess.

The trip to Grand Forks left at 5 p.m. and got in about 5 a.m., enough time for some work and a lot of time trying to sleep, waking up way too often and checking the BlackBerry to find out where in Minnesota we were.

The return train leaves just before 1 a.m. Sunday, so after I file my story and do some blogging, I’ll be headed right to the station.

The nicest thing about this trip is that my wife and 2-year-old daughter were able to make it. The tough part about being on the road three out of four weekends is the quality family time I miss, so it’s been great having them here this weekend.

One more note: If you have the chance, see a game at Ralph Engelstad Arena. This place is one of those landmarks on the hockey map, the kind you leave shaking your head in wonder.

What are your favorite college hockey road trips and/or the interesting ways you’ve gotten there?