Saturday, June 13, 2015

48 State Ultimate Road Trip

It would make at least one stop in all 48 states in the contiguous U.S. That means no state is left out! Each stop would be at a National Natural Landmark, National Historic Site, National Park, or National Monument It would be a true road trip, taken by car and not leave U.S. soil. I also included Washington, D.C. and added two stop in California to get us to an even 50 stops. Next, Randy did the hard stuff. He details the challenges of optimizing such a route in this blog. To get around some of those challenges, he used information freely available from Google Maps API and wrote a bit of code to calculate the distance and time it would take to drive between all 50 landmarks, which represents 2,500 individual routes. 8 Far-Flung Walking Sojourns It would take a computer millions of years to account for every twist and turn along a continental drive and give us the absolute best route — one that backtracked as little as possible.
Here are the stops, which I think represent nice a 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. Grand Canyon, AZ
Bryce Canyon National Park, UT
Craters of the Moon, ID
Yellowstone National Park, WY
Pikes Peak, CO
Carlsbad Caverns National Park, NM
The Alamo, TX
The Platt Historic District, OK
Toltec Mounds, AR
Elvis Presley’s Graceland, TN
Vicksburg National Military Park, MS French Quarter, New Orleans,
LA USS Alabama, AL
Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, FL Okefenokee Swamp Park, GA
Fort Sumter National Monument, SC
Lost World Caverns, WV
Wright Brothers National Memorial Visitor Center, NC
Mount Vernon, VA
White House, Washington, DC
Colonial Annapolis Historic District, MD New Castle Historic District, Delaware Cape May Historic District, NJ
Liberty Bell, PA
Statue of Liberty, NY
The Mark Twain House & Museum, CT The Breakers, RI
USS Constitution, MA
Acadia National Park, ME
Mount Washington Hotel, NH
Shelburne Farms, VT
Fox Theater, Detroit, MI
Spring Grove Cemetery, OH
Mammoth Cave National Park, KY
West Baden Springs Hotel, IN
Abraham Lincoln’s Home, IL
Gateway Arch, MO
C. W. Parker Carousel Museum, KS Terrace Hill Governor’s Mansion, IA Taliesin, WI Fort Snelling, MN
Ashfall Fossil Bed, NE
Mount Rushmore, SD
Fort Union Trading Post, ND
Glacier National Park, MT
Hanford Site, WA
Columbia River Highway, OR
San Francisco Cable Cars, CA
San Andreas Fault, CA
Hoover Dam, NV
Thank you Ann Garwood for the link.

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