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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Best and Worst States?

    This is an odd, but still interesting article written by John Kiernan from that analyzes 21 elements and seeks to determine the "best" and "worst" stated in which to take road trips in. The RTA policy is that EVERY state is the "best" to road trip in.... (although I have to give the nudge to Utah -- with so many national parks....)

    The Top 10 states in order are:
    Oregon, Idaho, Minnesota, Utah, Washington, Nevada, New York, California, Ohio, Colorado.

    And the ones that are really surprising are the "worst" -- Clearly, statistical analysis has some huge limits!

    Worst in order: Mississippi, Oklahoma, West Virginia, Arkansas**, Alaska

    The methodology is the most interesting part of the article for me. I'd love to get your thoughts on it!

    ** I have always loved driving in Arkansas...- gorgeous lakes...

    So... what do you think?

    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 06-23-2014 at 10:07 AM. Reason: typo

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default The limitation of raw data....

    Look at the metric for "Least National Park units per square mile" -- I am not sure what constitutes a national park unit -- but I digress.. In terms of a state blessed with natural beauty and where Federal land ownership is nearly 90% of the entire state.... Nevada is ranked as 49th in the USA. Contrast that with Massachusetts which receives the top ranking (#1) in the USA. Odd result.

    Massachusetts is a very pretty place -- But someone who has not traveled in both places, MIGHT get a different view of these states based on this application of data points.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Not for me.

    The only thing I can conclude is that this was a total waste of time and energy and I can not see it having any influence on roadtrip decision making and it's certainly not for me. Weather and traffic conditions at any one time are totally unpredictable and I have never based a roadtrip on the cost of fuel difference or by checking where my vehicle is most likely to get stolen. I have travelled many scenic roads that are not classed as 'Scenic Byways, but that doesn't mean it's not a great drive. As we say many times, the road trip is a unique experience to each and everyone and trying to analyze which is 'best' and 'worst' in this way just doesn't hold any credit for me. The best State to roadtrip in is the one you really want to visit, simples !

    [Utah would certainly be close to the top of my list too, probably top.]


  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    I agree with Dave -- what an incredible waste of time that was, putting together that list and that article! The time could have been better spent writing up the pros and cons of road trips, finding the best lodging for you, how to do a trip that you'll enjoy (i.e. not trying to drive 900 miles in one day), or something like that. At the risk of sounding a little bit bragadocious, I think many regulars on these forums could have written a more informational and helpful article -- and we probably HAVE!

    We loved road-tripping in Alaska and would do it again if we ever had the chance. We just crossed through Oklahoma and Arkansas and enjoyed the scenery, very much, and will be going through WVa on our trip -- and looking forward to it! Like others here, I have really found no states to avoid on a road trip. Even Hawaii, which is more difficult to do as a technical "road trip", is possible and fun as a fly-drive. Hubby and I did that during his Navy days. (He came into port on a ship and I flew over to meet the ship, then I rented a car for us and drove it all over the place.)

    Phthth on that article. Big grins for places like RTA!


  5. #5

    Default More than 10

    Way more than 10 great states to take a road trip. With that said, I agree with Oregon being in the top 10 - not sure about #1. Diverse scenery is a definite. Not having sales tax is a big plus and they pump your gas! Now, if they could just keep the rain to the evenings!

  6. #6

    Default Very odd

    Any methodology that contrives to leave both Montana and Wyoming out of the top ten is a non-starter with me.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default No comparisons.

    Years ago I heard a speaker who made one point which left an impression on me. Wherever you are, BE THERE! His point was, when at work, don't sit dreaming about that golf holiday, and when on holiday, don't answer the work phone. And so on.

    I have carried the attitude into much of my life, especially roadtripping. Often I am asked, 'what is your favourite city/state/place?' My response is always the same.... Wherever I am. Every place has something to make it worthwhile, enjoyable. And that is different for everyone.

    Pity the resources to compile the list were not used for something more uplifting and lasting.


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