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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK. I'll start this one. My favorite drives are

- Highway 550 from Durango, CO to Ouray, CO. Awesome scenery! Be sure to take the trip from Silverton to Animas Forks. It's bumpy but worth it.

- Highway 80-something (82?) south from Pagosa Springs, CO to Santa Fe, NM. It goes from a high alpine meadow down in elevation to the arid land near Santa Fe.

- North Cascades Highway in WA. Stunning.

- The trip form I-5 to the north side of Mt. St. Helens is incredible in its own way. especially in the blast zone. Maybe I think its so cool because I am a geologist, but check it out if you're near it.
 

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I'll add something as well

Was taking a cross-country trip awhile back using I-70. The Eisenhower Tunnel near Denver was closed so we were routed through and over the Loveland Pass. WOW!

Anothe neat drive is the Apache Trail in Arizona, east of Phoenix. Starts out blacktop, turns to dirt and loose sand with a particularly hairy descent down Fish Creek hill! :eek:
 

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My favorite is the Going to the Sun road in Glacier NP. We were there this past summer in mid July and the road had only been completely opened for a little less than a week (due to the snow from the previous winter). Incredible views and scenery and you can see the various climate changes right in front of you (from the misty dampness near the waterfalls in the valley, to the tundra up at the pass, to the arid valleys of the eastern side of the mountains).

If you are in the area a real nice drive (though hard to find) is up to Hungry Horse Dam (10th tallest in the US) and around the reservoir of the same name. It is just south of Glacier but was almost completely deserted (38 mile long lake), I think we saw 10 cars all afternoon.

Greg
 

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awesome posts

colorado drives through the mountains are my favorites along with the garden of the gods in colorado springs.I will someday retire there,very beautiful.
 

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Guys, I just took almost 30 minutes typing out my experiences on two roads, the Natchez Trace and the Blue Ridge Parkway. Unfortunately, I also tried to attach a picture to this post and when I did the entire post was erased. Oh well.

Suffice to say this: DO NOT leave this life without seeing both of these places if you value beauty, history, and relaxation. I am most familiar with the Trace, as I have only traveled the Blue Ridge once. I found the Trace http://www.nps.gov/natr/index.htm to be more interesting due to the plethora of interactive park exhibits along the way.

The Blue Ridge http://www.nps.gov/blri/index.htm is stunningly beautiful, and if scenery is your primary objective the elevations of the Smokey Mountains may be preferred to you over the comparatively lesser elevations of the Trace. Either way, you are sure to be pleased with your choice. :)
 

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Favorite scenic-drive

I have to agree with RaisinCain on the Blue Ridge Parkway!!! It is to me. the most beautiful place I have been so far! I am originally from Virginia and have spent my life up in the Mts. every chance I had. I still do!!
You start out at Afton Mt., Va/ I64 W or you can take the back roads on Rt. 250 W and follow either right to the Parkway. Head south on it and enjoy the awesome scenery, the wildlife and the freshest air. Make sure you gas your vehicle up before entering as you will discover there are very few pump stations. You'll love it!!! :D
 

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Travel Highway 101 from the Oregon/California border all the way up into the state of Washington..

It's a very scenic drive. :wink:
 
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I haven't seen all the USA, but my two favorites are Yosemite (any dirve but especially the valley), and Zion National Park, with it's tunnel and magnificent scenery. Zion is ALMOST as spectacular as Yosemite, and is driver friendly. If you haven't been to either, you are missing two of the most beautiful spots I have ever seen.
 
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California State Route 1 north from Mill Valley as far as it goes.
California State Route 1 south from Carmel by the Sea as far as it goes.
California State Route 49 all of it (From Oakhurst to Nevada City and beyond).
California State Route 120 from Old Priest Grade to US395.
California State Route 108 from Sonora over Sonora Pass to US395
California State Route 70 through the Feather river canyon
California State Route 89 all of it.
US 101 through Avenue of the Giants in Humboldt county California
Interstate 84 east from Portland Oregon through the Columbia river gorge.
 

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To me, the best scenic drive in America is Highway 16, in SW Virginia. Take it north, from Marion up to Tazwell. Go East then on 61, and up little 623 over Rich Mountain, and down into Burke's Garden. Circle the valley on 666, and then head over Garden Mountain on the other side. This is back on 623. which runs into VA 42. Take that east back to I 77.
 

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I'll 'second' the North Cascades Highway in Washington---it's one of the best in the country.

Another one I'll add: The 'Bearthooth' Highway, running from the NE entrance of Yellowstone (Silvergate, WY) to Red Lodge, Montana.
 

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Another Scenic Drive.....

The scenic drive I enjoy most - with many stops along the way - is the drive through Grand Canyon National Park from Tuba City, AZ on through to Williams, AZ.

You pass several different ecological zones (desert to alpine climate), the views are breathtaking, and colors change with the weather and time of day. Then imagining John Wesley Powell's travel down the Colorado River before it was tamed, seeing American Indian artifacts and ruins, and handling petrified wood.
 

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In my opinion the best section of the Blue Ridge Parkway is from Ashville to Boone NC. You’ll need to get off the Blue Ridge Parkway and see Mount Mitchell.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Interesting that you mention that, because that is exactly what I did a couple of weeks ago. The weather sucked...it was snowing and I couldn't see $hit. It was also a royal PITA because the BRP is closed just north of Mt. Mitchel and I had to backtrack and go up 26. Too bad, it looked like it would have been awesome if I could have seen something other than little white flakes.
 
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