California to Ohio: A Road Trip: Part One

About a year ago I was presented with the opportunity to accompany my friend Andy on his last Cross Country road trip completing his move from LasAngles to Chicago. Andy has lived in California for the past eight years and I've been able to visit him on multiple occasions, each trip bringing about its own unique adventure. So with the thought of an epic week with one of the best people I know, paired with the fact that I've always wanted to make such trip, I agreed quite speedily.
The Planning took some back and forth and I imagine that most of it was pretty ambitious, but we hacked out a plan to follow the southern route, camping at a few spots and staying with a friend in Oklahoma before heading back up north to Columbus, Ohio.
I choose a early flight out to land at Burbank, Ca. around 11am. So the night before the flight, knowing it was going to be a long 36 hours or so I grabbed some Waffle House and loaded up on the coffee. Special thanks to Jeff Rigsby for hauling me to the air port at an ungodly hour.

Andy picked me up directly form the airport and with a quick stop at a local Trader Joe's a Baja Fresh and an In and Out Burger we headed away from the city. The plan that first day was to head straight toward the Grand Canyon, neither of us had been there before, camp and then get up at the crack of dawn to watch the sun rise over the rim.
 
As the sun came down on that first day we stopped right off the highway and watched the sun go down. Camp was set up in the dark, amazing considering that neither of us had set this tent up before and had to do it blind. We stayed up that night just talking and catching up, both excited about the prospect of what was in store for the next day. I think we only got about 4 hours of sleep. 
Still dark outside we tore down our camp, much cursing ensued, and made the last 30 or so miles left to the Grand Canyon. We didn't know what we were inshore for. Our day at the canyon was the defining moment of the trip.