Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. #1
    Noob2.0 Guest

    Default West of Chicago?

    Hello to everyone! And thank you very much so far for all the amazing info that I have gathered while lurking on this site.

    This is my first of many questions that I will float as I plan my (well, mine and my girlfriend's) 2 month road trip across the US/Canada and back. We are first-timers and yeah, 2 months is a long time, but it'll be the only chance we can do this for a looooooong time.

    Starting from VT, going to Toronto (for a wedding and visit parents), down to Niagara Falls, down to Cleveland, around to Chicago is where I have planned so far...

    I am not sure about dipping down to the south a bit more at this point, but am open to any suggestions (anything would be awesome since I have no idea what there is in the mid-US). We were thinking of skirting up to Mount Rushmore and then into Yellowstone and working our way down through Colorado, Utah, Arizona, Nevada, California and up the coast to Oregon, Washington, BC, over to Alberta then maybe skirt our way --over a couple of days--back to Toronto for a rest, then back to Vermont.

    My question for anyone is: From Chicago, does anyone know of anywhere interesting to go westward (or even a scoot southward and then up westward)? We would ideally like to end up going towards Mt. Rushmore area.

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Québec, Montreal, Arizona, California, France
    Posts
    761

    Default suggestions

    Hello to everyone! And thank you very much so far for all the amazing info that I have gathered while lurking on this site.
    Welcome to the forum!

    Starting from VT, going to Toronto (for a wedding and visit parents), down to Niagara Falls, down to Cleveland, around to Chicago is where I have planned so far...
    Will you be going to Toronto via Quebec or the States? If you go through Quebec, Montreal is a very fun city, especially if you enjoy nightlife (it is the Canadian capital of nightlife). For a nice view of the city go to Mt Royal park, the Westmount belvidere, the Oratoire St Joseph, or climb the Olympic stadium tower. If you enjoy shopping, stroll down Ste Catherine St. and visit the underground city. If you're into history, take a walk in the Old port area.

    On your way to Toronto, stop by Sandbanks Provincial Park near Picton, there's a very nice beach area with dunes. Ivy Lea Park by the 1 000 islands is also a nice place to stop for the night if you plan to camp. Nearby Niagara, you will find many wineries that offer tours and tasting (for free or for a small fee), try at least one of them, it's worth it. At Niagara Falls, hang on the Canadian side, the view of the falls is much better.

    I am not sure about dipping down to the south a bit more at this point, but am open to any suggestions (anything would be awesome since I have no idea what there is in the mid-US).
    My favourite mid-US city is definitely St. Louis. It is known as the Gateway to the West. Speaking of gateway, there is a huge arch made of stainless steel that was built just west of the Mississippi and is overlooking the city of St. Louis. It is called the Gateway Arch and it is 630 feet high, you cannot miss it. You can actually go up that Arch using an elevator ($). It also contains an underground museum about the westward expansion which is very interesting. Be sure to visit the "Soulard" quarter near the Busch Brewery.

    East of the Mississippi, you could visit Nashville and its Country music Hall of Fame and Graceland in Memphis if you're a fan of Elvis. Mammoth Cave NP in KY is a very scenic place. In Lynchburg, TN the Jack Daniel's Distillery offer free tours for tourists.

    My question for anyone is: From Chicago, does anyone know of anywhere interesting to go westward
    Personally, I think I'll never get tired of exploring western America!:-) If your first major stops are Mt Rushmore and Yellowstone, you could go straight through IA. Council Bluffs has some great museums : the Union Pacific Railroad Museum and the Western Historic Trails Center.

    You could follow the path of the old Oregon Trail in Nebraska and Wyoming (SR26). Some of the major highlights on this road are Ash Hollow, Chimney Rock, Scottsbluff NM, Ft Laramie, Register Cliffs and the Wagon Ruts. If you decide to go through MN and SD, and enjoy quirky things , stop by Blue Earth,MN to take a picture beside the Green Giant, visit the Corn Palace in Mitchell and Wall Drug in Wall, SD. Take a detour through Badlands NP and the Black Hills (Mt Rushmore, Crazy Horse). Wind Cave NP is also an interesting stop where you can visit caves and see bisons.

    Hope this will help you planning your trip!

    Gen

  3. #3
    Noob2.0 Guest

    Default Thank you!

    Thank you for all the information (and the links are very appreciated!). St. Louis definately looks like an option! All the stuff after St. Louis looks great too. I'm going to have to decide which route to take. I want to do it all!!!...but can't.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default Some more suggestions

    From Chicago, I'd recommend driving to Dubuque, IA. Stop and see the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium, and if you're a baseball fan check out the Field of Dreams movie site about 20 miles away. From there head north along the Great River Road until you hit I-90. Take that West to Mt. Rushmore, stopping at any of the suggestions that Gen provided, particulalry the Badlands.

    I might also suggest, particularly if you want to hit St. Louis, which is also one of my favorite stops, that you change your route around a bit.

    After you hit the Black Hills and Yellowstone, I'd go north to Glacier N.P. After that, continue on west either through Canada or Idaho and Washington. Then go down the coast to CA, and back through NV, AZ, UT, CO, KS, and MO. It will save you time and milage from zig-zagging north and south while you make your way west.

Similar Threads

  1. Roadtrip Chicago, Boston, New York, Washington D.C
    By George Zunneberg in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 08-05-2010, 10:21 AM
  2. West Coast Blitz, Chicago to San Diego and back in 7 days
    By Nick89TA in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 05-26-2005, 09:26 AM
  3. Chicago to West in 10 days
    By Patrick Ferrell in forum Fall & Winter RoadTrips
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 09-18-2003, 05:15 PM
  4. Heading West from East
    By imported_Doc in forum Planning Summer RoadTrips
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 09-15-2003, 09:15 PM
  5. 2 weeks through southern usa
    By Silvia in forum Gear-Up!
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 04-06-2003, 04:09 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
  • Find the Perfect Hotel
    Search RoadTrip Motels
    Enter city name

    Loading...



  • MORE STORIES