Tuesday, March 10, 2015

A Cross Country Marathon Trip

Floating around the internet for some time has been a map of the US that shows a route to the best roadtrip around the US.  It lacked something viewers desperately wanted....A listing of an itinerary. When you followed the link it didn't go anywhere.

Today I found a new map, created by one person, a Michigan State University doctoral student Randy Olson,  that hits one destination in all 48 continental states.  The route allows  visiting the 48 states

Clearly they may not be the destinations anyone else would choose nor represent the vast variety that is across the breadth of our diverse country....but it covers many big ones.  To see everything would take a lifetime.....For a shorter time frame this seems to be a more reasonable road route.

Here are the stops, representing a interesting mix of history and natural wonder. If you had the road to yourself, it would take 9.33 days of driving, Olson calculates, but in reality you'd need at least 2 to 3 months to make the journey.    
(which we just happen to have :) )
  1. Grand Canyon, AZ
  2. Bryce Canyon National Park, UT
  3. Craters of the Moon, ID
  4. Yellowstone National Park, WY
  5. Pikes Peak, CO
  6. Carlsbad Caverns National Park, NM
  7. The Alamo, TX
  8. The Platt Historic District, OK
  9. Toltec Mounds, AR
  10. Elvis Presley’s Graceland, TN
  11. Vicksburg National Military Park, MS
  12. French Quarter, New Orleans, LA
  13. USS Alabama, AL
  14. Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL
  15. Okefenokee Swamp Park, GA
  16. Fort Sumter National Monument, SC
  17. Lost World Caverns, WV
  18. Wright Brothers National Memorial Visitor Center, NC
  19. Mount Vernon, VA
  20. White House, Washington, DC
  21. Colonial Annapolis Historic District, MD
  22. New Castle Historic District, Delaware
  23. Cape May Historic District, NJ
  24. Liberty Bell, PA
  25. Statue of Liberty, NY
  26. The Mark Twain House & Museum, CT
  27. The Breakers, RI
  28. USS Constitution, MA
  29. Acadia National Park, ME
  30. Mount Washington Hotel, NH
  31. Shelburne Farms, VT
  32. Fox Theater, Detroit, MI
  33. Spring Grove Cemetery, OH
  34. Mammoth Cave National Park, KY
  35. West Baden Springs Hotel, IN
  36. Abraham Lincoln’s Home, IL
  37. Gateway Arch, MO
  38. C. W. Parker Carousel Museum, KS
  39. Terrace Hill Governor’s Mansion, IA
  40. Taliesin, WI
  41. Fort Snelling, MN
  42. Ashfall Fossil Bed, NE
  43. Mount Rushmore, SD
  44. Fort Union Trading Post, ND
  45. Glacier National Park, MT
  46. Hanford Site, WA
  47. Columbia River Highway, OR
  48. San Francisco Cable Cars, CA
  49. San Andreas Fault, CA
  50. Hoover Dam, NV

I find this fascinating as I am researching for a cross country trip this summer.  While I'm not looking to hit all 48 states, I am looking at what sights (and areas) do I want to add to our itinerary.

I'm thinking at this point we will not do into the deep south (will do another time) but heading across the picking up and traveling parts of Route 66 through the middle section of the country with a few zigs and zags.  I will also save most  of the southwest and California for another dedicated trip.

Last summer we dedicated 2 1/2 months to seeing Washington State.  There were so many awesome destinations we saw and yet so much yet to explore.  I would be hard pressed to choose just one destination for Washington....but I am sure that it would not be the Hanford Site......

There are so many great spots along the way....I couldn't bear to spend a few short hours in each state or location.....so hard choices have to be made.

There are so many great possibilities, 

I can't wait to see....

What would you add....or subtract?


~  Happy Trails ~