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Montana?

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TheHighwayMan394:

--- Quote from: thspfc on August 01, 2021, 10:12:04 PM ---
--- Quote from: hbelkins on July 31, 2021, 09:53:51 PM ---Two weeks out from the trip, and I'm now beginning to wonder if possibly there might not be a chance for an impromptu storm chase the first couple of full days (UP, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and North Dakota). I've been seeing a lot of severe weather warnings for that area in the past couple of weeks, so I wonder if that pattern will continue.

Hopefully the heat wave will break in the upper midwest if it hasn't already.

My brother came near a twister somewhere in that general area (South Dakota or Minnesota, I think) years ago, possibly coming home from his honeymoon.

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We had a tornado warning in southern WI on Thursday morning. Havenít been keeping track of the weather up in northern WI/the UP but I do know that tornadoes are much rarer in that area than they are where I live. Further north the thunderstorms are less predictable, maybe due to the relative infrequency of weather stations compared to areas where more people live.

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MN and WI aren't exactly Nebraska, Kansas, or Oklahoma when it comes to tornadic activity; we get maybe one mildly intriguing outbreak a year. In addition, much of the area has been dealing with drought conditions this summer, so it's unlikely there will be much storm activity. And if there is any significant storm activity, it'll likely be late in the evening or overnight which makes storm chasing impractical.

US 89:

--- Quote from: hbelkins on August 01, 2021, 10:47:14 PM ---Leaving out using US 160, since I would still love to drive that route end-to-end and any trip to get out of the Four Corners area using that route would probably involve significant mileage on it, what other good options might there be?

Trying to get to the Oklahoma panhandle somehow is intriguing. But on the map, US 64 to the Taos area doesn't look like an exceptionally fast route. And then once in the panhandle, there's the matter of quick access to I-44.

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US 64 might not be your idea of "fast", but it does have some very nice mountain scenery and an impressive arch bridge over the Rio Grande.

oscar:

--- Quote from: US 89 on August 02, 2021, 07:05:11 PM ---US 64 might not be your idea of "fast", but it does have some very nice mountain scenery and an impressive arch bridge over the Rio Grande.
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Last times I was there, at the west end of the bridge, there was a viewing area with a chain-link fence. Conveniently, both times someone cut a hole in the fence, large enough for a wide-angle lens (which you'll need to photograph the whole bridge in one shot).

hbelkins:
The whole prospect of finding an alternate route should I-70 still be closed has brought out just fickle Google Maps routing can be.

Just for the heck of it, I ran Kayenta to Owenton for the best route back to my brother's. The first time, it routed me to a point near Gallup (I didn't zoom in for the particulars) and then I-40 and I-44 to St. Louis to pick up I-64.

I refreshed the page, and it ran a route across southern Colorado to hit I-70 at what I assume is Limon, Colo.

Then I refreshed a third time, and it did the I-40 to I-44 routing, but it took us off I-44 at Springfield to use US 60 into Kentucky, and then the WK Parkway to Elizabethtown.

I realize that Google adjusts for traffic and other issues, but it would be nice to calculate a route that doesn't take any current problems, slowdowns, etc., into determining which of several very different routings is the best.

Just for fun, I may run Grand Junction to Owenton to see how Google handles the I-70 closure.

texaskdog:

--- Quote from: webny99 on June 03, 2021, 05:55:27 PM ---
--- Quote from: hbelkins on June 03, 2021, 04:34:34 PM ---... I thought about crossing the Mighty Mac and going west through the UP of Michigan. Everything I've ever read about the UP indicates that it's a whole 'nother world up there.

If he's amenable to going that far north out of the way and then making a 90-degree left turn, what would be a good suggested routing to get the full flavor of the UP? It looks like US 2 skirts the lake for much of its length. What would be a fairly-direct route west that would still provide the UP experience?

And from there, routes west to Rugby that aren't too terribly slow but still allow for a good taste of northern Wisconsin, Minnesota, and North Dakota?

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Taking the Mackinac Bridge has the advantage of avoiding Chicagoland and the Twin Cities, which could at least partially counter any added time depending on when you'd be passing through. It is absolutely a worthwhile detour in my opinion, especially if you've never been to the UP.

My recommendation would be to stay on US 2 heading west from the Mackinac Bridge until at least M-117, and then take your choice of routing (likely M-117, M-77, or M-94) up to M-28. That route meets back up with US 2 at Wakefield not far from the Wisconsin line. Personally, I think M-28 is preferable to US 2 for several reasons: it's less mileage, it has better scenery (including of the Lake Superior shoreline, which you can't go to the UP and not see), and it passes through the "heart" of the UP, including Marquette, the largest city in the UP.

Max mentioned taking the detour up to Copper Harbor, but if you don't have time for that, the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore (just east of Munising) is a great stop that's not far from M-28.

US 2 is probably going to be your best bet west of the UP. There are some two-lane sections, especially in Wisconsin and Minnesota, but much of it is four-lane divided west of Bemidji.



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Every...single...person posting about the UP says Pictured Rocks and Mackinac Island and never mentions Soo Locks, Tahquamenon Falls, and the shipwreck museum

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