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Thread: UK trippers

  1. #1
    imported_Jimmy Guest


    Me and a freind are intending to come over from old Blighty next year four a three/four week drive and are just beginning to plan our route. Neither of us have visited the states before.
    Below is a possible route that we may take, any thoughts, suggestions, improvements would be greatly appreciated

    Total Mileage: 218
    San Fransico
    TM: 812
    Los Angeles:
    TM : 1196
    Las Vegas
    TM: 1466
    Grand canyon
    TM: 1742
    New Mexico
    Santa Fe
    TM: 2211
    TM: 2602
    TM: 3088
    Des Moines
    TM: 3968
    TM: 4331
    New Jersy
    TM: 4463
    New York
    TM: 4529

  2. #2
    imported_Jimmy Guest


    Me and a freind are intending to come over from old Blighty next year four a three/four week drive and are just beginning to plan our route. Neither of us have visited the states before.
    Below is a possible route that we may take, any thoughts, suggestions, improvements would be greatly appreciated

    San Fransico,
    Los Angeles->
    Las Vegas->
    Grand canyon->
    New Mexico,
    Santa Fe->
    Des Moines->
    New Jersy,
    New York,
    New York.

  3. #3

    Default Interests?

    There's lots to do along the route you outlined -- and you'll see a good portion of the USA.

    Be sure to drive some sections of the Oregon and California coastline. You might also want to visit a few other scenic attractions along the way -- Crater Lake, Oregon, Lassen Volcanic National Park (CA), and Yosemite National Park (near Sacramento CA) are all highly recommended.

    After Las Vegas, choose from Zion, Bryce, Capitol Reef and Canyonlands National Parks in south Utah.

    If you are interested in checking out the history and culture of the original Americans, stop by Chaco Canyon (NW New Mexico) and Mesa Verde Natl Park near Cortez, Colorado.

    If you like old trains, there are old west narrow gauge excursion railroads at Durango and at Chama, New Mexico (along the Colorado border. Go for a ride! In the areas surrounding Santa Fe, you can explore a bit of the Northern New Mexico Pueblo culture -- American-Indian towns with heavy Spanish influence -- places and cultures that pre-date anglo-american history by many years.

    At Durango (Colorado), you can arrange for river rafting on the San Juan (a tributary of the Colorado), and have a cowboy chuckwagon dinner and western music comedy show at the Bar D Wranglers. (There is also whitewater rafting at Moab, in Utah)

    You might spend some additional time in SW Colorado roaming around the San Juan Mountains -- this is part of America's rooftop -- extremely high country where the roads will frequently take you above tree-line. I especially like the road between Lake City and South Fork. The Million Dollar Highway (US550) between Durango and Montrose is also unbelievably beautiful. If you want to see what this country looks like ahead of time, take a look at the film "True Grit," (1969, I think), starring John Wayne. It was filmed in the area around Ridgeway, Colorado.

    As you work your way east, you could see Bent's Old Fort and the Kit Carson Museum near La Junta, CO. These are on the Great Plains, which will be quite a shock to you after the western mountains. Bent was a frontier era trader, Kit Carson a frontiersman-trapper-scout-soldier. They were among the earliest anglo-Americans in the region, and much history was written about them.

    In Nebraska, you can find many sites associated with the westward expansion of the 1840s and 1850s -- the Oregon, California and Mormon Trails all followed the Platte River and the general route of I-80. Bring a windbreaker though, as it is ALWAYS blowing.

    In Iowa, spend some time at the Amana Colonies and visit some of the shops and cultural sites there -- this was an experiment in religion-based communal living and they take great pride in showing their history. Eat lunch there, they're GREAT cooks! Also, the Herbert Hoover National Historic Site near West Branch (Iowa City), if you are interested in things "Presidential." Hoover was the President who led the USA into the Depression (1929) and also got blamed for it!

    As you continue east, be sure to drive a section or two of the Great River Road, along the banks of the Mississippi River. In Illinois, check out some of the Abraham Lincoln sites around Springfield. Also, in Chicago, find Carson's Barbecue and have some ribs.

    In Indiana (my family's home state), Brown County is an especially beautiful area, and you can find lots of crafts and other touristy shops around the town of Nashville. My Grandparents rode to Nashville in a mule-drawn wagon back around 1918 to get married, from a little place called Spurgeon's Corner. Southern Indiana is very beautiful -- it'll remind you of your own countryside in England -- it is hilly, forested and very GREEN in spring and summer.

    In Pennsylvania, I'd stay off the toll road (I-70/76) as much as possible and see the countryside along US30 instead. You might stop at Gettysburg (site of a major Civil War Battle in 1863), and perhaps at Valley Forge, a Revolutionary War winter camp where American rebels endured a monstrous winter. See the countryside around Lancaster, where Amish people still live in traditional ways. Another possibility in PA is to drive US11/15 along the Susquehanna River -- very beautiful.

    From Philadelphia, it is a short run into New York City, with all of it's attractions.

    You can find many of the places I've mentioned directly on the internet, if you want more information about them. If you have any other questions, many folks on this site are willing to help, so post again! Bob

  4. #4



    I'd do the Black Hills of South Dakota (Mt Rushmore) after Denver and then Yellowstone Wyoming, Glacier National Park Montana then the Cascades in Washington State before flying back out of Seattle either home or to the east coast. The drop off charges a car hire company will charge for picking up in Seattle and dropping off in New York are liable to be very high. You would also then miss out a long boring drive across the plains states after the grandeur of the west and the Rockies.


  5. #5

    Default Disagree

    Many of us do not find the North American Great Plains boring at all -- they are rich in American westward expansion history and pioneer culture, Native American sites, and natural diversity as well as just "flat" awesome in their vastness. I'm not quite so quick to dismiss them, as I've found much of interest there. It's all in how you look at it and what you are personally interested in.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default After several thousand miles

    I have had the good fortune to wander much of the country -- I have never found any section of America to be boring -- as Bob and others have commented --- there is always much to find and discover.


  7. #7



    I do hope my comments were not offensive to you, I was just expressing my personal point of view.


  8. #8
    imported_Jimmy Guest

    Default Main interests

    Thanks very much for that info guys especially to Bob for taking the time out to write such a large amount.
    Geographical features, American history, music, fine food and drink and film location are basically what we are interested in.
    We have considered hopping over from east to west, but I do believe we would miss out on many sights that have been mentioned, I suppose the question is can we do justice to that route in just one month?

  9. #9

    Default Nope.

    Not offended -- just stating MY opinion!

    I've been held captive by the magnificent Great Plains since I was 13 -- when I stared out the back window of a motel in Glenrio, Texas on I-40 (US66 back then) and could, I thought, see all the way to Canada. That motel is still there -- although now a ruin -- right on the NM/TX border. Today, the old falling-down billboard out front says on one side, the "Last Motel in Texas" -- and on the other side, "Last Motel in New Mexico." It sat astride the borderline along with a gas station and cafe.

    The Great Plains played a pivotal role in the growth and development of the USA as a nation and also in the nature and values of the people we have become (or more correctly, the people we THINK we are).

    If you'd like to read a bit about them, check out a book by Ian Frazier called (what else) "Great Plains." Mr Frazier explored the Plains via road trip for some time and wrote about the experience and the people he met along the way.




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