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Old 06-20-2012, 10:53 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles (actual 9628)

OK having owned my Miata for about a year now, made several modifications and raced a bit with the SCCA. I thought it was time for a road trip. I will be updating this thread as I go and as I find free WiFi. We will (as in Dad and I) leave this Thursday morning and will return on the 18th of July. Sleeping in a two man tent and avoiding highways when ever possible. I am posting the main spots were are trying to hit on this trip but I can't for the life of me find a trip optimizer for the route. Also, is there not anything worth seeing in the great plains area? Missouri, Iowa and Nebraska are dead to me. I'm just driving through them. So, if anyone has any cool road suggestions or places to stop please let me know. Here is the basic route and what the stops are.

Mount Rushmore, South Dakota
Devils Tower, Wyoming
Custer State Park, SD
Needles Highway
Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument
Yellowstone National Park.
Beartooth Highway
Grand Teton National Park
Going-To-The-Sun Rd, Mt
West Glacier, Montana
Mt St Helens, , Washington
Mt Rainier National Park, Ashford, WA
Crater Lake National Park, Oregon
Leggett, CA (Beginning of the Coast Road)
Yosemite National Park, Ca
Las Vegas, NV
Hoover Dam, Lake Mead National Recreation Area, NV
Grand Canyon National Park, AZ
Arches national park Utah
Canyonlands Utah
Moab, Utah
Albuquerque, NM, USA (Family and a much needed shower at this point)
Hoover Al (Again Family)

Added
Charleston SC

The general problem I have is finding decent campsites along my route. Also there is nothing on my trip in the middle of the country. On the return leg between Albuquerque and Hoover I got nothing which is exactly the same as the going out leg between Irvington Ky (starting point) and Mount Rushmore. I don't know the western part of the country that well, so if I'm driving right by something that is NOT to be missed or if you want to offer up your couch for a night please let me know.
Pictures to come...shortly of the trusty steed and prep work.
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Old 06-20-2012, 11:14 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

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Mount Rushmore, South Dakota
Devils Tower, Wyoming
Custer State Park, SD
Needles Highway
Crazy Horse monument is about 40 mins south from Mount Rushmore, you'll pass it on your way to Custer State Park.

if you come up though central Nebraska, you should take some time in the Bad Lands, it's amazing in the sunrise and sunset. Pactola Lake is on your way to Devils tower from Custer through Hill City, and i'd suggest taking Old 385 though most of the Black Hills. Also, Bear Butte is right outside Sturgis, about 2 miles north of the west of the Buffalo Chip. Deadwood and Lead can also be passed through on your way to Wyoming, both worth a quick visit, and the DC Booth fish hatchery is Spearfish isn't too much of a detour from the I-90.

there are more backwoods, local stuff, but i can't tell you as i only remember have to drive/hike there and never really knew map directions.
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Old 06-20-2012, 12:13 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

Here is the link to my Map that I have created. I still need to add rest stops and camping sites.
https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msid...4872,43.286133

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Old 06-20-2012, 12:28 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

Not even comming to socal?
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Old 06-20-2012, 01:05 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

There are campsites in Grand Canyon, South Rim, for sure. I assume you're going to visit the South Rim by your map. The North Rim is beautiful also but it's in Utah.

Petrified Forest National Park is definitely worth taking time to see, I am very fond of the Painted Desert, beautiful scenery. It's further east, like east of Winslow, AZ, off I-40, so might be a little out of your way if you're going directly from Grand Canyon north to Utah (looks like you're taking State Hwy 89 north?) This national park provides some very scenic driving, so you really don't even have to take time to park and hike out to enjoy the beauty.

http://www.nps.gov/pefo/index.htm#

This might be worth a visit, it's ... just a big hole from a big rock from outer space. It's fascinating to me.


http://www.meteorcrater.com/


The only fun driving roads I know of are more southern AZ, like State Hwy 89a, from Jerome down to Prescott. A blast to drive, beautiful scenery and fun corners. It's south of your route through AZ, but if you happen to go down south of Flagstaff that's a great highway to take a scenic run on. Jerome is a neat looking old town.
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Old 06-20-2012, 01:50 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

Just looked at the Petrified forest. I have a choice in this. I can do the arches, canyonlands and moab. Or I can keep south and hit the Petrified forest and crater. Anyone have experience with both?
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Old 06-20-2012, 01:59 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

Awesome! You may want to consider hitting The Great River Road up into northern Wisconsin, it's breathtaking and some of the roads are mind bogglingly great
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Old 06-20-2012, 03:41 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

Ive done moab, ut and monument valley. Monument valley was really neat. Definitely do the Moki Dugway when you are in that area.

Also if you are going far enough north to hit moab go through Colorado on 70. It is probably one of the best stretches of highway in the US. If you cut across south the southern end of the rockies is kind of dull.

I from PA and went to school at ASU, I have driven across country 5 times. It is so awesome! Keep this thread updated.
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Old 06-20-2012, 06:29 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

Red Rock Canyon outside of Las Vegas....
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Old 06-20-2012, 07:47 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

Miata Prep! MREs stowed behind the seats. Enough food for 7 days for 2 men. One more duffel bag will be loaded into the trunk. Its going to be a full load. Clothing enough for 5 days in the bag, a two man tent, and two sleeping bags.



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Old 06-20-2012, 11:18 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

I have a feeling your backs not going to like those seats after a weeks or two, even if they are the "most comfortable" racing seat.

Oh and I'm in Nebraska, and not dead.v
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Old 06-20-2012, 11:23 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

might be worth a trip to the dragons tail or deals gap in east TN
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Old 06-20-2012, 11:55 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

I envy you, I wish I can find time to do something like that. Those seats looks mighty comfy for a long trip too. Subbing. Can't wait to see the updates.
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Old 06-21-2012, 12:05 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

I envy you! I've always wanted to do something like this.
I have a question though, is 27 days how long you plan on taking, or is that exactly how long the trip is going to take?
BTW good luck and take plenty of pics!
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Old 06-21-2012, 03:33 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

You're coming THAT far east, but not going through the tail of the dragon??? Sure i know there are plenty of great roads out west, probably even better. But for east of the Mississippi it's the best you can get.


Then again, you do live in Lexington. I guess it's not much of a big deal to make a weekend trip to go out there.
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Old 06-21-2012, 04:25 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

If you happen to change routes, Malibu has some AMAZING canyon roads.
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Old 06-21-2012, 05:10 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

damn good shit.one day one day. if you ever pass thru san francisco hit me up would love to help out.free oil change check up at the shop. oh lunch on me
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Old 06-21-2012, 06:50 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

Safe travel, man! This is really cool.

Be aware the southern leg of your journey is going to be HOT.
Driving the back roads in the SW, in NV, UT and AZ you will see some triple digit temps that will start in the morning/early afternoon. Some of those roads aren't well-traveled and cellphone service os sketchy. Watch your coolant temps and stay hydrated.
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Old 06-21-2012, 07:38 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

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damn good shit.one day one day. if you ever pass thru san francisco hit me up would love to help out.free oil change check up at the shop. oh lunch on me
Were coming through SanFan to see the bridge and to drive Hwy 1. I might take you up on that oil change. I'll be about 5000 miles overdue by that point.
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Old 06-21-2012, 07:39 AM   #20 (permalink)
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You're coming THAT far east, but not going through the tail of the dragon??? Sure i know there are plenty of great roads out west, probably even better. But for east of the Mississippi it's the best you can get.


Then again, you do live in Lexington. I guess it's not much of a big deal to make a weekend trip to go out there.
Yep, I live in the east, the dragon I can run anytime. However Hwy 1, going to the sun, ect are once in a lifetime.
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Old 06-21-2012, 07:40 AM   #21 (permalink)
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I envy you! I've always wanted to do something like this.
I have a question though, is 27 days how long you plan on taking, or is that exactly how long the trip is going to take?
BTW good luck and take plenty of pics!
YES, 27 days. I have to have Dad back in town on the 18th for some kind of USAR meeting. The mileage is a bit low. I think I'm somewhere around 7300 right now.
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Old 06-21-2012, 08:10 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

Fun times. Good luck and may the road gremlins prey on other cars.

Back in 2009, the GF and I did a trip to Flyin Miata's Summer Camp...but we made a much longer trip out of it that included Bonneville Salt Flats, Zion National Park, Gateway Auto Museum, Denver CO, Salt Lake City, Bryce Canyon, Running to the Arizona boarder to say I've been there, and a TON of driving around at our destinations. IIRC we did a little over 6,000 miles in just under two weeks.......and I set 2nd fastest time at the track day at the Summer Camp.

I'd love to stash enough aside for another crazy cross-country run.
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Old 06-21-2012, 04:32 PM   #23 (permalink)
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I know, I know, Bugs always said you should take a left at Albuquerque, but you should head south to Carlsbad and Roswell before you head back east. Plus it would eliminate OK, which is less than spectacular...
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Old 06-21-2012, 05:49 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

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Safe travel, man! This is really cool.

Be aware the southern leg of your journey is going to be HOT.
Driving the back roads in the SW, in NV, UT and AZ you will see some triple digit temps that will start in the morning/early afternoon. Some of those roads aren't well-traveled and cellphone service os sketchy. Watch your coolant temps and stay hydrated.
This is extremely good advice.

Spare drinking water in case you have a break down on the side of one of those desolate desert roads is a life saver.
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Old 06-21-2012, 06:04 PM   #25 (permalink)
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If you're driving that far north in the Texas panhandle, you could easly make a quick stop at Palo Duro Canyon State Park. The scenery is unblievable and there should be some cool campsites there around this time. I believe its just south of Amarillo; but I haven't been there in years so I can't say for sure.
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Old 06-21-2012, 07:38 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

+1 for the badlands, about the coolest thing in SD...And for gods sake, stop at Wall Drug in SD - we drove cross country a few years back and passed about 200 billboards for god damn Wall Drug (they start in MN), so we had to stop - but it was too hot to leave the dog in the car, so we couldn't go in. I swear they have more billboards than South of the Border (anyone that's been up or down the east coast knows this one...), so you have to stop at least once...

Best of luck on the trip. Seeing our country by car is one of the greatest ways to spend your time IMO. I've only gone the whole way across once, but I'm itching to do it again if I can get some damn vacation time...
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Old 06-22-2012, 08:51 AM   #27 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

We are now in Ohmaha Neberaska. Slept last night at Glenn Cunningham Campgound. What a great place! We made sure to stop in St.Louis following in Man v. Food's footsteps when we had lunch at Iron Barley. Great Food! Saw the arch while we were in St. Louis. Pork Loin over barley with gravy served in a sizzling skillet. Were at the McDonalds at the moment. I can see right now that they are going to be out best friends with thier cheap coffee and free WiFi. As far as today goes we will be heading out to the Badlands via Hwy 275. Its a bit slower than the interstate, but the views should be much improved. On to the pictures.








This place managed to get us to stop, again free WiFi, they got their moneys worth when the charged us 6 bucks for chocolate covered peanuts!

Not really in mexico, but I thought hey why not mess with you folks.

The 1st Sunset over Nebraska!


Breaking down the tent!

The lake not 100 yards from our tent, we picked a great spot considering it was near midnight!


Next update will be either tonight or tomorrow from the badlands.
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Old 06-22-2012, 09:39 AM   #28 (permalink)
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Default Re: 27 Day Miata Trip - 7000 miles

AWEsome!

Two of the best roadtrips I've been on were blitzing across the US with my pops. We didn't camp, we just traded spots behind the wheel while the other slept. Saw a lot of amazing things and met some interesting people.
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Old 06-22-2012, 09:53 AM   #29 (permalink)
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Totally awesome!!! Gonna be following this thread closely.

If you're in Albuquerque for a bit, send me a PM.
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Old 06-22-2012, 09:57 AM   #30 (permalink)
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You saw pretty much all STL has to offer, and even ate at one of our best restaurants. The only problem is that you are in the ghetto where people get shot all the time....lol

Ozark land on the other hand has the best saltwater taffy in the state!
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