Posted by: TheAuthor | 29/10/2011

Day 45 – Jelly Belly

Waving goodbye to the crack den we set off for the Jelly Belly factory in Wisconsin, 90 minutes north of Chicago. As we began to cross the prairies again on our way across to San Francisco we thought a stop here would be fun, we were not disappointed.

Firstly, the tour takes you around on a jelly train through the warehouse as you watch and learn about the creation of the company and the sweet making process. Quite fun to watch and just as interesting to learn how the jellybeans are made.

Secondly (and most fun) is the gift shop. Jelly Belly themed merchandise litters every crevasse inside, from umbrellas and t-shirts to badges and straws. I saw a number of baskets on the floor and jokingly thought to myself that no one would use them. A mere hour later I had filled one up with sweets and various products we had deemed worthy to buy.

Also available was a free sample station, which offered unlimited tasters of every confection made by the company. I decided to go for a quest of finding the most disgusting ones, as the flavour researchers work painstakingly long to produce exact tastes. The worst ones I tried were the following (going from the nicest to the most awful); Mouthwash, baby wipes, skunk spray, barf, rotten egg, mouldy cheese and worst of all tinned dog food.

It was on the way from here that we struck a bombshell. We had a long way to drive to keep pace with the road trip but worst of all, we had to increase our speed and thus increase our fuel consumption because Kevin is not very economical – especially fully laden. We decided to drive across the state of Minnesota in one hit, placing us closer to Mount Rushmore for tomorrow but resulting in an unavoidable full days drive again. This eventuality was brought on by the delay from waiting for the ferry way back in Newfoundland.

Magellan (GPS) is of little help, as it cannot work out how long it will take to get places. A good example is that it will take 2-hours to drive 180 miles at 70 miles an hour, not going to happen is it Magellan. We crawled into our hotel room at close to 10 P.M. where Shell and me set about redesigning this stage of the road trip.

Allocated driving funds are running low but we need to drive a long way in a short time. The variables; increased speed equals increased fuel expense but less time in-car; accept long slower drives but make frequent stops; with long drives do you not sleep/camp anywhere/plan a campsite/sleep in the car. With a plan to drive a lot, we tucked ourselves into bed thinking about the Blue Man Group and hoping to find an answer.

Trip Statistics:

Tim Horton’s Stops – 16

Alternate Coffee Stops – 5

States Driven Through – Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota

Kilometres driven – 1027km

Total Canadian Kilometres driven – 11,499km

Total distance driven – 15,597km

Car faults – Found out Speedometer is inaccurate by 10kph

– Speakers starting to refuse to operate

– Tail Light Casing Broken

– Console Handbrake light always ‘on’



  1. Did they seriously have such nasty sounding flavours? O_o

    • They did indeed, painstakingly recreated from scratch to get the right taste. I would hate to be a taste tester!

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