8/11/22: Topic - Upcoming Trip Plans

Once again, it's been quite some time since my last blog post since it's also been a while since my last major road trip. However, that's why I'm posting this today - to outline the plans for an upcoming run which will be the first big one in over a year and a half. Despite not being able to make long runs for the past 18 months or so, you might have noticed that I've been very digilent in trying to get through the massive photo backlog I've accumulated over the past 6 plus years. I've made great progress in getting those Photo Guides posted, and will continue to do so going forward. I must admit that it feels good to chip away at the backlog and despite the photos now being years old, they're still almost all relevant as most Interstate Highways don't see too many major changes in just a few years time. I thank all of you who continue to follow this project of mine on the site's Facebook and Instagram accounts, and I always appreciate hearing the kind words and thoughtful messages you've sent my way!

Coming very soon, I'll be starting this next major clinch run. The overall goal of this run is to finish off and photo document every mile of Interstate in Wisconsin, as well as revisiting some stretches in others states which I wasn't able to get photo documentation of the last time I was there. What this means is that while this trip will only net me one more state in which I will have clinched and photo documented every mile of Interstate, it will allow me to obtain photos of several miles of Interstate which I don't have any photos of at the moment. This has bothered me that I skipped out on photographing those stretches last time, so I feel that now is the time to put that to rest. I'll also be re-clinching some stretches in the opposite direction that I clinched them in the previous time, which will make for new content.

Anyways, onto the outline of the run. Below are the Interstates I will be covering on this trip broken up by state, in no particular order:

Ohio: Interstate 80 West (re-clinch), Interstate 74 East (re-clinch), I-275 Outer Loop (re-clinch), I-675 (both directions, re-clinch), I-270 Outer Loop (re-clinch), I-670 (both directions, re-clinch), I-470 (both directions, re-clinch), I-70 East (I-75 to WV border).

West Virginia: I-470 (both directions, re-clinch), I-70 East (re-clinch)

Pennsylvania: I-70 East (WV border to PA Turnpike).

Kentucky: Interstate 275 Outer Loop (re-clinch).

Indiana: Interstate 90 West (re-clinch), Interstate 74 East (re-clinch), Interstate 465 Outer Loop (re-clinch), Interstate 865 (both directions, re-clinch), Interstate 69 (both directions, newest open segment from Martinsville north to IN 37), I-275 Outer Loop (re-clinch).

Illinois: Interstate 90 West (re-clinch), I-39 (both directions, WI border to I-80), I-80 (both directions, re-clinch), I-280 East (re-clinch), I-74 East (re-clinch).

Wisconsin: Interstate 90 West (re-clinch), Interstate 43 North (clinch), Interstate 41 South (clinch), I-39 North (clinch), I-39 South (northern terminus to I-90), I-43 South (from Milwaukee to southern terminus).

Minnesota: Interstate 90 West (re-clinch).

South Dakota: Interstate 90 West (re-clinch), I-190 (both directions, re-clinch).

Wyoming: Interstate 90 West (re-clinch), Interstate 90 East (MT border to I-25), Interstate 25 South (re-clinch), Interstate 80 East (I-25 to NE border).

Montana: Interstate 90 West (WY border to I-94 in Billings), Interstate 90 East (I-94 in Billings to WY border).

Nebraska: Interstate 80 East (re-clinch), Interstate 76 (both directions, re-clinch).

Iowa: Interstate 80 East (re-clinch), Interstate 280 East (re-clinch), Interstate 74 (both directions, re-clinch).

The run will total about 5,500 miles and last for 10 full days. Again, the purpose of this run is to finish off another state's Interstate mileage (Wisconsin) while re-clinching previous stretches of which I either had no photo coverage, substandard photo coverage, or old photo coverage. I also will be covering previously clinched stretches in the opposite direction I clinched them in last time, which will provide more in-depth coverage of the route on the site.

Updates on the run will be posted to the site's Facebook page along the way. If you do not already follow the site's Facebook and Instagram accounts, please consider doing so. I look forward to revisiting some parts of the country which I haven't seen in years and adding many more Photo Guides from these places to the site as I slowly but surely get closer to my ultimate goal of clinching and photo documenting the entire US Interstate Highway System. Until next time, take care and stay safe!


12/1/20: Topic - Trip Plans for End of the Year

I hope everyone is doing well, despite the strange and uncertain circumstances we continue to find ourselves in here and all over the world. With restrictions tightening up more than any other time this year, it's no secret by now that there is very little we're able to do for fun. It seems one of the few safe things to do despite all of this is to isolate yourself in your vehicle for a road trip just for the sake of taking one. And that's exactly what I intend to do, hopefully starting this coming weekend. I usually don't travel or even feel like traveling much this time of year due to the risk of bad weather and the limited daylight for highway photography. However, I find myself in a situation in which I'm going to be out of work for at least another month or so, allowing me the option to take my time and also to somewhat escape any bad weather in the northeast for two weeks. As you might guess, this means that the upcoming planned trip will be geared toward clinching and photo documenting Interstate highways in several of the southern states. If all goes according to plan, this run, when completed, will result in me finishing off all Interstate mileage in 7 more states. Those states are Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Kentucky. If this happens, it will mean that in 2020 I was able to finish off and document all Interstate mileage in a whopping 14 states. I don't know about you, but I would say that is a pretty significant step toward my end goal of driving and documenting the entire Interstate Highway System!

The general details of this trip are that it will run about 7,200 miles and last for 15 full days. It will fill in gaps in routes and cover a lot of 3di's which I've never been on before. In between this, I will have the opportunity to update photo coverage for other routes which I haven't photographed in several years. Looking back at some of the older photos, I can't stand to not replace them since usually their quality and detail is rather lacking.

Now, onto the trip plans. I've split them up by state, in no particular order.

West Virginia: I-77 South (full, re-clinch)

Virginia: I-77 South (full, re-clinch)

North Carolina: I-74 (northern segment from I-77 to US 52, full, both directions), I-77 South (from VA border to I-40), I-40 West (from I-77 to TN border)

Tennessee: I-40 West (NC border to I-65), I-640 (full, both directions), I-140 (full, both directions), I-275 (full, both directions), I-440 East (re-clinch), I-75 South (full), I-24 West (full), Unsigned I-124 (full, both directions), I-65 (AL border to I-40, both directions).

Georgia: I-75 (full, both directions), I-575 (full, both directions), I-24 West (full), I-59 (full, both directions).

Alabama: I-59 South (full), I-65 (from I-85 to TN border, both directions), I-565 (full, both directions), I-22 East (full), I-759 (full, both directions).

Mississippi: I-59 South (full), I-22 East (full).

Louisiana: I-59 South (full, re-clinch), I-10 (from MS border to Baton Rouge, both directions), I-12 West (full, re-clinch), I-510 (full, both directions), I-310 (full, both directions), Unsigned I-910 (full, both directions), I-110 (full, both directions), I-610 (full, both directions), I-49 North (full, partial re-clinch).

Arkansas: I-49 North (full - southern segment, Fort Smith segment, and northern segment), I-49 South (northern segment), I-30 East (full), I-530 (full, both directions), I-440 (full, both directions), I-430 (full, both directions), I-630 (full, both directions), I-540 (full, both directions), I-40 West (from I-440 to OK border), I-40 East (full).

Texas: I-369 (full, both directions).

Kentucky: I-24 West (full), I-69 North (full), I-69 South (from I-24 to TN border), I-169 (full, both directions), I-75 North (full).

Indiana: I-64 West (from I-69 to IL border), I-64 East (full).

Illinois: I-24 (full, both directions), I-57 South (I-24 to MO border).

Missouri: I-57 (full, both directions).

Ohio: I-75 North (full), I-76 East (full).

Pennsylvania: I-76 East (OH border to Exit 110).

Notice that I've routed in some backtracking to enable me to re-photograph stretches in which the photos are older and of lower quality and detail. Needless to say, it will be an intense 15-day run, but here's the catch: With the limited daylight this time of year, I'll only be traveling about 480 miles per day on average. If the need arises, I also have the option of taking an extra day or two to complete the run.

Note that once again, for the fourth trip in a row, I'll only be doing photo documentation on this trip as there are currently no plans to continue doing video documentation going forward. During the run, if possible, I might try to make a few small site updates since I'll have more time in the evenings due to the short daylight this time of year. I can't guarantee it though. As usual, you can follow along with the trip updates daily on the site's Facebook page. That about sums up all I had to say regarding this upcoming trip, and I look forward to clinching all these Interstates and bringing you the Photo Guides for them. Until next time, and stay safe and healthy!


8/5/20: Topic - Trip Plans for August 2020

I'll start by saying that I hope everyone is staying safe and healthy in this very difficult time. It's rather unnerving to see where we are today compared to the last time I made a blog post and went on a trip, which was nearly a year ago. The pandemic has made traveling rather tricky in 2020, needless to say. If you were willing and able to make any road trips thus far this year, or plan to in the coming month before summer winds down, I wish you safe and healthy travels. Since I live alone and work in a field which keeps me mostly isolated from others, I feel like I should try to make the best of the current situation and make a run despite the challenges that exist. I will follow all state and regional guidelines during the trip, which will hopefully lead to another good "Clinchfest" full of gathering new content and making a very significant stride toward my goal of having the entire Interstate Highway System clinched and documented right here on Cross Country Roads.

Now, onto the trip plans. Note that these plans are subject to change at certain points, depending on the state and regional guidelines in the areas I'll be traveling. However, after putting this plan together, I'm confident that things can work out as planned and I remain hopeful of that. One particular Interstate highway which I've remained weak on in terms of documentation on the site is Interstate 35. This upcoming trip will largely remedy that, as you will see in the route breakdown below. However, perhaps the biggest accomplishment to be met by this trip is that it will clinch the remaining miles of Interstate in SEVEN different states! There are quite a few states in which my completion of their Interstate mileage is lacking by just one route, or even just a few miles of one route. That is where this run comes in. Checking off seven more states' Interstate mileage in terms of coverage and documentation is a huge step toward my end goal. The seven states which will have their Interstate mileage completed and documented in this run are as follow: Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, South Dakota, Kansas, Colorado, and New Mexico. I'm lacking very little in Iowa, Missouri, and South Dakota so it only made sense to work them into this run. I'm currently very weak on photo documentation of the Interstates in Kansas, and that will also be addressed. I-35 will be clinched and documented from its northern terminus to the Oklahoma border as well. In other words, this is a key trip in terms of both finishing up some odds and ends as well as covering new stretches of Interstate which I've not yet been on.

Anyways, onto the general trip plans. I'll be starting in Minneapolis and proceeding as follows in no particular order. The run will last a total of 10 days.

Minnesota: I-35W North (full), I-35 North (I-35W to northern terminus), I-35 South (full), I-35E South (full), I-535 (full, both directions).

Wisconsin: I-535 (full, both directions).

Iowa: I-35 South (full), I-29 (full, both directions), I-380 (full, both directions), I-880 (full, both directions), I-129 (full, both directions).

Nebraska: I-129 (full, both directions).

South Dakota: I-29 (full, both directions), I-229 (full, both directions).

Missouri: I-35 South (full), I-29 (full, both directions), I-229 (full, both directions).

Kansas: I-35 South (full), I-70 West (full), I-70 East (Topeka to Missouri border), I-135 (full, both directions), I-235 (full, both directions), I-335 (full, both directions), I-470 (full, both directions).

Colorado: I-70 West (Kansas border to I-25 in Denver), I-25 (full, both directions), I-270 East (full).

New Mexico: I-25 (full, both directions).

Wyoming (time permitting): I-25 (Colorado border to I-80), I-80 (I-25 to Nebraska border), I-180 (full, both directions).

As you can see, it will be a pretty busy run. Since this is most likely the only major trip I'll be taking in 2020 (due to the pandemic), I tried to cram as much coverage into this trip as I could and it will total around a little over 5,000 miles if I'm able to cover everything listed above. I guess I should also note that just like my two trips last year, I'll only be taking photos since I've discontinued video content.

Site updates will obviously not be made during the time I'm making this trip. However, I will most likely post updates along the way to the site's Facebook page. That's all I had to cover today in this blog post, and I look forward to making the most of this upcoming trip to continue bringing more Photo Guides of the Interstate Highway System to the internet! Thank you for your time! Stay safe and healthy!