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Thread: Road Trip!

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    FORT Fanatic tickerrose's Avatar
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    Road Trip!

    I just found out that my husband and I will be departing on a cross country road trip from upstate New York to Colorado Springs, CO in the next month.

    I am very excited and looking forward to seeing some of the country on our way.

    We know we will be making a B-Line for the Chicago area on our first day to stay with family there. We are thinking of taking the mother road (66) from Chicago to Springfield, Missori, because my hubby really want to go to the massive Bass Pro Shop store there, we also might take a side trip to Branson because we here it is the ultimate tourist trap. We don't want to just visit tourist traps, but see some of the natural wonder of the country as well. Does anyone have any suggestions on how we should make our way from Springfield or Branson to Colorado Springs. Anyone familiar with the area, who might be able to tell us some must see's or cool driving routes. We have some time and money, so we want to get the most out of this trip we can. Who knows when we will both get two weeks off from work again!

    Anyone else have a road trip coming up? Where are you going? I thought with summer on it's way ( I mean I am sure it will get here soon, right?) road trips might be a fun discussion topic!

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    Crabby Cancerian remote_goddess's Avatar
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    Re: Road Trip!

    tickerrose, how fun! I'm a bit farther south than the route you're planning, so I can't really help you with the road-trip part, but I have been to Colorado Springs many times, and have always had soooo much fun there. Are you planning on staying in Co Springs for a bit, or just there and back, more of a fly-through?

    My summer road trip involves packing up the boyfriend's jeep and heading west. He's a fan of the Arizona/New Mexico landscape, and wants me to join him on a "landscape-appreciation" vacation, culminating with the Grand Canyon. I am a water person, not a desert person, so we'll see how this goes... but I do love road trips!

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    That's all folks! Unklescott's Avatar
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    Re: Road Trip!

    I'm so jealous of both of you. I love road trips. I once attended a sales convention in Colorado Springs. We drove out from Ohio in an old motor home. It was great! There were 8 of us in that old piece of crap and we had a blast. Coming back we were fighting to stay ahead of a major blizzard. I-70 was closed and we had to come back a southern route (no interstate) and pick up I-70 in Salina KS.
    The Arizona/New Mexico desert is wonderful IMO. One of my most memorable road trips was with my best friend of over 40 years. We flew into Phoenix on a Monday, drove to Sedona and spent the night, then drove to the Grand Canyon the next day. We spent the night there, then drove to Vegas where we spent a couple of days. We drove back to Phoenix on Friday for a NASCAR race and left Phoenix that Monday. The drive from Sedona to Flagstaff was incredible.

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    FORT Fogey justCoz's Avatar
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    Re: Road Trip!

    The Bass Pro Shop in Springfield is an amazing site. I'm not really into that stuff at all and I enjoyed it. So if your husband is interested it would be worth the stop. Personally I wouldn't recommend Fantastic Caverns. IMO it was ok, but not great. Surprisingly one of the things my father dragged us to is one we ended up enjoying tremendously and that is the Precious Moments Chapel. My husband really thought he would hate it, as he is definitely not into those figurines, but that's almost a minor part of it all. The paintings in the chapel are fabulous. The Chapel is in Joplin-about an hours drive from Springfield. Another thing Dad dragged us to was the National Battlefield that is here. It was March when we went and the outdoor tour wasn't open, but they did have a indoor part that had a reproduction model of the battle. If either of you like history or Civil War stuff it was pretty neat. My dad really enjoyed it, but he is really into Civil War history. If it weren't for my dad we wouldn't have seen nearly the touristy stuff that we've seen

    Branson is crazy busy crowded at times--use the alternate routes whenever possible. Most of the hotels and tourist centers have maps that describe where all the shows, some restaurants, shops, etc are, and are very good for finding the back ways to get places. We haven't been to very many shows as that's just not something my husband would enjoy at all. We've been to a couple of magic shows that were fun. I've heard good things about a lot, but I've had several people tell me that for the money the Dixie Stampede is the best. It's a good show, and you get food too. I've never been to that show, but have only heard good things, not bad. There is a new spot called "The Landing" that I visited briefly last fall. It's a ton of shops and restaurants, but it's a very cool atmoshere, and there is a (free) fountain/fire show there that didn't last long and was pretty good. The trip from Springfield to Branson is about 45 mins. now.

    MrC's family came from CO a few years ago and I believe they came across 70 and then down 13. They only came this direction and headed out another way. I assume that would still be the best way but someone may have a better route. When they traveled about 10 years ago 13 wasn't as good as it is now. 13 is a lot better road now than most maps will show as they've just recently improved it. I don't have an atlas at the moment because apparently when MrC cleaned out the car Sunday he decided that our 1999 one was too old and it would force him to buy a new one. Never mind that we can still use it to at least look at the roads I think 13 connects with something else near Kansas City, but it's all still a pretty straight shot up.

    MrC just told me that Table Rock Lake is one of the best bass lakes in the country. They have a lot of pro tournaments there. Also in Branson is the IMAX theatre-which is neat to see if you never have seen one of those.

    If you want to PM me about some of the specifics that's ok with me. I'll help with any info I can.
    Last edited by justCoz; 04-19-2007 at 01:57 AM.

  5. #5
    In My Nest doxie's Avatar
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    Re: Road Trip!

    Have fun on your road trip. We drove from San Francisco to Alabama in June, 2001. I'm not planning to do this again. The first part of it was great - Las Vegas, Hoover Dam, Grand Canyon (amazing - although I think that the new "skywalk" thing that is there now would freak me out - our pictures show me with a death grip on the railings/trees/whatever I could grab on to). Don't miss out on seeing the Grand Canyon if you have the opportunity though! After that, it was a long haul across Texas. We took Interstate 20 - I was born in Texas so I was used to the farmland, pastures and endless miles of "nothing". My road trip/cohort was horrified. He caught a whiff of his first cow pasture and almost passed out. He cheered up a little as we passed South of Dallas (because he saw skyscrapers and we also stopped for a Lone Star Beer...) After Texas, I really thought that I was going to have to get him a translator. But, he's adjusted to life in Alabama and he's even said "y'all" a few times.
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    Miz Smarty Britches queenb's Avatar
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    Re: Road Trip!

    I'll be doing two this summer; in June I'm flying to Seatttle, and I'll be visiting Olympic National Park, Northern Cascades NP, and going up to British Columbia (Vancouver Island).
    Then in September, wonder of wonders, I finally talked L into taking a trip with me. We will go to Billings Montana, then over the Beartooth Mountains and into Yellowstone for a few days, then into Idaho. I've already been to Yellowstone once, but didn't give myself nearly enough time there--I made sure to take plenty this time.
    I can't wait for either trip!
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    Wonky snarkmistress Lucy's Avatar
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    Re: Road Trip!

    When I was 12, we took a six week road trip from Virginia to the West Coast and back, camping in a pop-up camper. We sort of ambled along a southwesterly route on the way out and went more north coming back. I wish I could do it again, as I'm sure I'd appreciate it more now than I did as a snippy adolescent stuck in a minivan with my family.
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    Queen Chloe Harmoj's Avatar
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    Re: Road Trip!

    I can recommend that if you are traveling down RT 66 in Illinois, and it takes you anywhere near Springfield, Illinois, you should really take the time to stop take a tour of the Dana-Thomas House one of the first homes designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. It has been completly restored and is really worth the time, especially if you like to look in other people's houses.

    My Dad, Mom, Sister and I took a road trip from Evansville, Indiana to Colorado and back over two weeks in 1999. It was so much fun. We visited Rocky Mountain National Park, Yellowstone, and Grand Teton National Park. All four of us in a Tauris. We spent the night in some very interesting places. I planned out the whole thing on the internet. It was so much fun. The last trip together as a family, before my sister and I were married and before Mom got sick. We stopped at this FLW home on our way back, and it was one of the best parts of the trip.

  9. #9
    FORT Fanatic tickerrose's Avatar
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    Re: Road Trip!

    Thank you all for the recommendations so far! I got some great ideas. While the Route 66 portion of the trip is a big thing for the way there (yes, Bass Pro Shops is VERY important to my husband),we have yet to figure out how we are going to get back from Colorado.
    We will be spending about four days in the Colorado Springs area. It is where my husbands family lives and we are going for his youngest brothers graduation on the 24th. We have about 4 days to get there, 4 days there and four days back. I know we are going to do the Pikes Peak thing, the Garden of the Gods and his dad really wants to bring us to Cripple Creek.

    One of the things I am most excited about is eating. Yes, I know, beautiful vistas, breathtaking countryside and I am concerned about getting good BBQ and a milkshake at a drive-in. One of the main reasons I thought about going to Branson is because I heard that Lambert's Cafe is on the way there from Springfield. I have seen things about it on Food Network and know it is the home of the "throwed roll". We don't get much variety in upstate New York and I want to not only see, but taste my way to Colorado and back.

  10. #10
    FORT Fogey justCoz's Avatar
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    Re: Road Trip!

    I started another reply and don't know what happened to it. I guess it's lost somewhere. MrC told me last night to mention Lambert's. They do throw the rolls, but depending on what time you go there can be a two hour wait. The food is not good enough for that long of a wait. Since you like BBQ our local magazine just listed the 5 best in the 417 area. Buckingham Smokehouse and BBQ was rated #1. If you want more info on those let me know. I think you can check out the best of awards online at 417mag.com That includes a lot of good eating places. They list a ton of local places which is great.

    When you are in Springfield there are little signs on the roads that mark the historic route 66 so you can follow it even through town if you want.

    eta: I just looked at the magazine site and it does list the best of in one of the tabs. Right now on that first page is the 5 best BBQ joints as well. I had to scroll to find it.

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