I have a little time away from work coming up, an available car, and a desire to see some hockey. That means it’s time for a hockey road trip.
Checking out my schedule, and looking around at what I would want to do, I decided quickly that I wanted to see a bunch of hockey along the west coast of America, a place that only recieves slightly more respect in the hockey world than the Southeast division of the NHL, which only gets slightly more respect than the Mexico national team.
I’m still working out a bunch of the details, but I have my game schedule solidified. Home team is listed first.
Feb 12: LA Kings vs Calgary Flames NHL
Feb 14: Ontario Reign vs Utah Grizzlies ECHL
Feb 15: Anaheim Ducks vs Atlanta Thrashers NHL
Feb 17: San Jose Sharks vs Edmonton Oilers NHL
Feb 21: Bakersfield Condors vs Victoria Salmon Kings ECHL
Feb 22: Bakersfield Condors vs Alaska Aces ECHL
Feb 23: Fresno Falcons vs Alaska Aces ECHL (team folded)
Feb 24: Fresno Falcons vs Alaska Aces (optional) ECHL (team folded)
Feb 25: Stockton Thunder vs Las Vegas Wranglers ECHL
Feb 28: Everett Silvertips vs Vancouver Giants WHL
Mar 1: Tri-City Americans vs Portland Winterhawks WHL
Mar 3: Portland Winterhawks vs Everett Silvertips WHL
Mar 6: Seattle Thunderbirds vs Tri-City Americans WHL
Mar 7: Seattle Thunderbirds vs Tri-City Americans WHL
Mar 11: Spokane Chiefs vs Everett Silvertips WHL
Mar 13: Rapid City Rush vs Tulsa Oilers (bonus game) CHL
For those keeping track, that’s 16 14 games, 13 12 home teams, 22 21teams total, in 29 days. Not a completely packed schedule, but it keeps me busy. Rapid City, SD is thrown in because it is in line with my return to work, plus they are a brand new team with a brand new arena, so it’s worth checking out.
You can find a rough map of the trip here.
For this trip, I plan on taking a lot of pictures, recording some audio, and maybe even posting some hockey history of each team along the way (when I can).
I’ve put up a twitter-like micro blog so I can do short updates, including pictures from my camera phone. You can find it at:
And anything worth doing is worth starting a facebook group about, right? Which you can find:
If there are any bloggers who want to meet up for beers before or after the games, or at the game itself, drop me a line here. If anyone has suggestions of hockey related things to do while I’m in some of these towns, let me know, either in the comments, or via the contact form.
I did something like this several years ago, taking a tour through the old UHL (14 teams at the time) plus six teams in the Central Hockey League. It was a lot of fun, and I got a bunch of pictures, but I didn’t have a blog at the time, or any other place to share the experience. Hopefully, I will be able to share with you what the hockey world looks like out west.
Even though it’s still two months away, it helps to get a jump on the planning. If you want to drop by a game I will be at, I’d love to meet you.
Update: The Fresno Falcons have folded, opening up the schedule, but disappointing me. Not as much as their fans, I’m sure. Sorry Falcons fans.