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Because you can't spend all day every day journeying around IgoUgo, editors round up the highlights: members' notable trips, newest reviews, favorite destinations, contests, and more. Have a question or idea? Let us know!

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The Great American Road Trip Week 6: The Great Plains

The Great American Road Trip Week 6: The Great Plains Photo

Photo by samepenny

Posted on July 23, 2012 in Trip Ideas

Miles and miles of plains stretching into the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. The Great Plains is where our wheels took us this week as we traverse the country in search of some of our members' best photos of the United States of America. From fields to rock formations, the heartland of America served as a pristine backdrop and made us feel like Ansel Adams.


The windswept plains, the wavin' wheat, The Sooner State was our first pit stop up tornado alley. We took in the sights of Oklahoma City, including the OKC Memorial before heading into the country to see the miles of oil derricks lining the highway.

OK City Memorial Oil Derreck

   Photo by Vanilla Sugar                                                                                          Photo by Sail Army

The serenity of the miles and miles of flat fields is just what we needed when we got to Kansas. As we slowly departed from the cities, The Sunflower State let us breathe the clean fresh, sunflowery air. While some people may not think the prairie is the most beautiful scenery, the National Preserve is not to be missed!

Wheatfield Sunflowers

   Photo by smallplasticman                                                                                      Photo by smallplasticman

The Cornhusker State was another state that let us crank down the windows and enjoy the beauty of the heartland of America. Old grain elevators and hay bales stretched as far as the eye could see, and we made sure to catch a game at Memorial Stadium before we parted.

Grain Elevator Nebraska Hay bails

   Photo by btwood2                                                                                                 Photo by Tracy T

South Dakota
Pictures say a thousand words, and we have ones from Mount Rushmore State to prove it. The eponymous landmark is iconic for its pristine granite and makes a great photo op from any angle. And is there any more alien a landscape in the continental USA as the Badlands?

Badlands Mt. Rushmore

   Photo by amillionmilestogo                                                                                     Photo by catsholiday

North Dakota
"Dakota" means friend or friendly in the Lakota-Sioux language, and the locals proved this to be true in The Peace Garden State (yeah, we didn't see that state nickname coming either). With natural treasures like Teddy Roosevelt National Park and picturesque towns like Grand Forks, we felt bad about ever making a Fargo joke.

Teddy Roosevelt National Park Grand Rapids

   Photo by RoBoNC                                                                                                  Photo by AmeliaK

The Treasure State had plenty of just that; an abundance of natural phenomena were feasts to our senses. From the aptly named Big Sky to the absolutely must-see-in-your-lifetime Glacier National Park, Montana truly showed that it is an American treasure.

Big Sky Glacier National Park

   Photo by Mr. Wonka                                                                                               Photo by btwood2

From treasures to The Gem State, we felt like we were shopping at Cartier. Rightly so, as we passed through the old mining towns of Silver City and there mining-town charm. The scenery outside of the towns was just as beautiful as the rest of the area, with stretches of fields heading into the mountains.

ID Scenery Silverton

   Photo by oldscrach                                                                                                Photo by Wildcat Dianne

The end of our tour of the Great Plains, The Cowboy State was the perfect place to set up camp. If you have never experienced the beauty of Yellowstone National Park, stop what you are doing, get in your car and drive there. And with Grand Tetons nearby, there is no time like now for a road trip.

Yellowstone Grand Teton Sawtooths

   Photo by Binaya                                                                                                      Photo by Lorengul

Previously on Road Trip: The Midwest
Next up on Road Trip: The Southwest

Posted by jhartmann13 (JJ Hartmann)

Comment by MilwVon on July 24, 2012

I especially enjoyed my recent time in SD and WY. I hope to return to MT and Glacier NP someday too!

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