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14 Oct update in original post: Please help me plan my cross-country road trip - wanna meet members Login/Join 
Okay guys, Completely updated since like everything else military, m y plans have changed a bit.

I'll no longer be starting out in Dallas, I'll be flying into Lubbock on 15 Nov. just to pick up my kids and head to Fort Meade, MD. That's where we will now pick up the vehicle and head on our trip.

1. Fort Meade to Pensacola, FL.
2. FL to Prairie Grove, AR. (Meeting SF Member)
3. AR to Grand Canyon.
4. AZ to Dinosaur, CO.
5. CO to Yellowstone.
6. MT back to Ft. Meade. (Meeting SF Member)

The trips from Arkansas to the Grand Canyon, and from Montana back to Fort Meade are essentially just driving. I'm gonna try to find some museums and things to entertain the kids but I have the better part of a week to drive back from Montana to Maryland.

Anyone along any of those legs interested in meeting up I'd love to.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: OttoSig,

13 years to retirement! Just waiting!
Posts: 4296 | Location: Seoul | Registered: August 10, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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That sounds like a lot of fun. I am sure your kids will remember it for a long time.

My wife and I are in Provo, which is roughly 40 miles south of Salt Lake City.

We have so many outdoor activities here, and Provo is a good place to start from.

Depending on how warm it stays in November, you might be right at, or just at the end of the peak of our fall colors.

There is the Alpine Loop, about 15 miles to the north. That will take you from the valley up to and over some incredible mountains with lots and lots of incredible views. Timpanogas Cave is at the top. Been a while since I have done that hike and gone on a tour of the cave, but can definitely recommend it.

There are lots of other stopping points on the road for a variety of hikes, camping, and fishing. Once you go over the top, you can work down past Sundance ski resort and then either go back down Provo Canyon along the Provo River passing Bridal Veil Falls and ending up in Provo.

If you go up Provo Canyon, you will come to Deer Creek Reservoir with views of the back side of Mt. Timpanogas. You continue on to the Heber Valley, which is very nice and worth exploring, and can then go to Park City for fine dining, shopping, and almost any outdoor activity you can think of.

A little further south of Provo, you can go to Mount Nebo and view the colors there, as well as getting up over 10,000 feet and having incredible views back up the valley to Provo and further north. Lots of Elk and Deer all over, great camping.

Might want to look up Thanksgiving Point and see what they have going on at that time. They are supposed to have the world's largest display of mounted dinosaurs. Thanksgiving Point is basically at the start of the road up to the Alpine Loop, so quite a lot of things to hit just in that one area.

That is really just touching on the things you can do in this area. If there are different types of activities you are interested in, please let me know and I will be happy to help with other suggestions.

I am also more than happy to meet up with you and your family. My 15 year old girl might be up here to meet with your kids as well. Feel free to email me if you have any questions and I will follow up with you.

Be safe.
Posts: 174 | Location: Utah | Registered: June 16, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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When I travel, I love to get to know the local culture a bit. One way I do this is to learn any history associated with theat location. Perhaps see a historical attraction while there. Also, I always seek out local foods that you might not find elsewhere.

The right of self preservation, in turn, was understood as the right to defend oneself against attacks by lawless individuals, or, if absolutely necessary, to resist and throw off a tyrannical government.
Posts: 1257 | Location: Lehigh County,PA-USA | Registered: February 20, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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You will be covering a lot of beautiful area.

I was reading your post to my wife and now she wants to take a road trip (it has been a few years since our last).

We are in a North Dallas suburb so if you need a ride from the airport and a place to stay while in town, let me know. We have plenty of room.

There are several SF members in the area.
Posts: 557 | Location: McKinney, TX | Registered: February 20, 2018Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I'll contact all those that express interest in meeting and try my best to give good dates.

Navy travel from OCONUS has lots of variables but I'm trying to stick to the schedule as close as possible.

13 years to retirement! Just waiting!
Posts: 4296 | Location: Seoul | Registered: August 10, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Legalize the Constitution
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James, it looks like you’re drive essentially forms a tent over SE Wyoming; Utah up to west-central Montana on 15, then a leg running down to Rapid City. I’d love to meet up with you. Keep in touch and if things work out, maybe we can.

We got a $5 fine for whining

Posts: 10890 | Location: Wyoming | Registered: January 10, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
I'm Different!
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Since you're heading north from the Grand Canyon, taking a somewhat zig-zag trip could net visits to
Horseshoe Bend
Bryce Canyon
Monument Valley
Canyonlands National Park
Dinosaur National Monument
YellowStone & Grand Tetons

Heading eastwards:
Little Big Horn
Mt Rushmore
Wall Drug Store

Memphis - so much music
Vicksburg National Military Park

NASA Stennis Space Center (between Baton Rouge & Mobile

Hope this helps

“Agnostic, gun owning, conservative, college educated hillbilly”
Posts: 4139 | Location: Middle Finger of WV | Registered: March 29, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
teacher of history
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Craters Of The Moon National park is near Idaho Falls and most impressive. The falls at Sioux Falls is nice and there is also the Battle Ship South Dakota museum.
Posts: 5127 | Registered: March 04, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Idaho Falls is a hop skip & a jump from Yellowstone or Grand Teton parks. Beautiful scenery and animals (not in petting zoos, though). By November they may be closed down or partially so, but it's worth checking on ahead of time. If they're open, consider driving through Yellowstone (in the west entrance and out either the north or east entrances) on you way to Cascade. Outside the east entrance is Cody Wyoming, there you can visit the Buffalo Bill Museum, LOTS of cool stuff there: .

Cascade would probably be a great place to retire to, at least from the aesthetics standpoint. I don't know anything about the politics or economy there but I imagine one or two of SF's Montana residents can provide some insight. I grew up in Havre and Helena until I entered High School and my grandparents lived in Havre and Great Falls, so I spent considerable time traveling up and down that highway. That was all quite a few years ago, though. Montana is one of the places I'm considering for when I retire in a few years, along with Idaho and Alaska.

It can be cold up there, especially at night (duh!) so be sure the three of you all have warm clothes and good sleeping bags. November isn't too early to run into a winter storm, so be prepared if you get stuck for a day somewhere along the way if they close the highways.
Posts: 6420 | Location: Portland, OR | Registered: February 12, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Not sure if we will be in the area at the time but if we are, you would be welcome to stay here for a night if you wanted. The only problem is, it looks like it is off of your course a bit. We live in Rutledge, TN (Eastern, TN) next to Cherokee Lake. Rutledge if about 6 hours East of Memphis.
I do have a Rottweiler pup who will be a year old at that time but she loves people. Just built a firepit so you could relax for a bit before continuing on.

My sister lives in Semmes, AL, just outside of Mobile. I will get some advice from her and relay it to you.

Entire Veteran family here so we would love to host you and your family. I will have a payment due however. One six pack of Alagash white beer. I cannot find that stuff anywhere around here!!

Escape is not always the safest path.
Posts: 1714 | Location: Escaped to TN | Registered: October 29, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park in Mobile, Alabama is a great way to spend a day. Along with the Battleship there is a sub, aircraft, tanks and other fun stuff to do.

Link to USS Alabama webpage

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Posts: 3404 | Location: Jacksonville, FL | Registered: September 10, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Awesome trip planned . I made a similar trip with my folks in the early eighties. I have also done this type of trip fifteen years in a row around the Sturgis mc rally. Make the trip more about the trip than the sites. Talk with locals at meal stops and find things locally. Keeping a loose schedule avoids disappointment if weather or other factors interrupt things. For dinasaurs check out the mammoth site in montana. In SD hit wall drug,and the corn palace in Mitchel. Also see the Crazy Horse sculpture,more interesting than Rushmore.Also see the Cody firearms museum in WY. Have a safe trip seeing this great country. This will be a lifelong memory!
Posts: 97 | Location: Ma. | Registered: November 18, 2020Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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OttoSig: I will also be at Pensacola Beach for the last two weeks of November visiting family and would love to meet up with a fellow forum member. My email is in my profile.
Posts: 2520 | Location: High Sierra & Low Desert | Registered: February 03, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Muzzle flash
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Nov 1 is a Monday. What are your plans for that evening? There are many SF members in the DFW area and I suspect we could plan a group meetup. I'd be happy to contribute and have a FTF.

I used MS Streets & Trips to plot a route from Cascade, Montana to Pensacola, Florida and it agrees with the one you posted perfectly. You didn't say where in North Carolina you planned to visit. The direct route from Pensacola, Florida to Fort Meade, Maryland follows I-85 through that state before heading NE to Richmond, Virginia. However, at Greenville, North Carolina you could take US-29 to Danville, Virginia, home of the AAF Tank Museum. You might enjoy a visit there.


Texan by choice, not accident of birth
Posts: 25770 | Location: Dallas, TX | Registered: May 08, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Texas Proud
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My Dad and I made a similar trip several years ago. We left the DFW area heading west visiting the Grand Canyon, Vegas, Zion NP, Grand Tetons, Yellowstone, Devils Tower, Mount Rushmore, and Deadwood, SD before heading back to DFW. On the way to the Grand Canyon we spent a few hours in the Petrified Forest NP in Arizona. Turned out to be very I interesting and as I recall one of the visitors center had a great exhibit of small dinosaurs that had inhabited the area. Hope y'all have an amazing trip.

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Posts: 1798 | Location: DFW | Registered: March 28, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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If you'd like to plan a stop in northern Virginia, I think we can find a few SIGforum locals to meet you for lunch or dinner.

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Airsoftguy, June 29, 2018

Posts: 29481 | Location: Loudoun County, Virginia | Registered: May 17, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I spent a week in Kansas City years ago, just happened upon “SubTropolis” pretty cool tunnel system/subterranean business park. Kids might like to drive through.

Also a very fantastic National WW I Museum in Kansas City.

What part of "...Shall not be infringed" don't you understand???

Posts: 9924 | Location: Western WA state for just a few more years... | Registered: February 17, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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If you’re going to be in Pensacola then the National Museum of Naval Aviation is a must see!

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Posts: 6288 | Location: North Carolina | Registered: April 30, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I figure you know you'll hit snow, sleet, etc. in Montana around November and are prepared for it. We hit that kind of weather coming out of Yellowstone Park and was stuck driving at night (we started out early enough, we didn't figure on not finding lodging before dark) and were unprepared going through winding mountain roads. I had to follow a lone truck that was brave enough to push through. All the other trucks were stopped on the side of the road.

Here are some resources I've been using:

Where to Eat Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives Locations We haven't been disappointed in any of the Triple D locations we've been through and we've been through a lot.

Planet Ware For each state or city, there's always a top 10 list that i pick and choose.

Travel Math I mainly use this to get half-way points.

Good luck and enjoy.

"It did not really matter what we expected from life, but rather what life expected from us. We needed to stop asking about the meaning of life, and instead to think of ourselves as those who were being questioned by life – daily and hourly. Our answer must consist not in talk and meditation, but in right action and in right conduct. Life ultimately means taking the responsibility to find the right answer to its problems and to fulfill the tasks which it constantly sets for each individual." Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning, 1946.
Posts: 16694 | Location: The Free State of Arizona - Ditat Deus | Registered: March 24, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Sir, I do not have any advice on your trip. But I used to be a member of the Meade Rifle and Pistol Club at Ft. Meade. I think it might be worth you checking out. They used to have access to all of the ranges, but 9-11 changed that. But it is still a good place to shoot. I hope this helps.
Posts: 542 | Location: northern VA. | Registered: August 18, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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