U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > General U.S.
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 07-26-2012, 11:15 PM
 
Location: Jacksonville, FL
11,145 posts, read 14,129,269 times
Reputation: 7075

Advertisements

So, I live near Hartford, CT and did a road trip out to various states in the midwest. I am going to share my impressions and experience in this thread.

Here is a map of exactly where I traveled.



VERY interesting trip, despite what many people may think. I thought the eastern part of Ohio was nice. We spent the first night in Richmond, IN. Then headed over to the Gateway Arch in St. Louis, MO. It was awesome but we didn't get to go inside the arch, because the wait was way too long, so we said F it. Then, we headed up to Davenport, IA and spend the second night there. The trip up there through Illinois was interesting. It looks like they built the interstate highways literally right through the corn fields. But geez, in Ohio, Illinois, Indiana and Iowa, it seemed like 95% of the land was corn fields and this other mysterious crop that we couldn't figure out what it was. But eventually we figured out that it was soybeans LOL. So basically, most of these states seem almost entirely occupied by corn and soybean fields! The scenery is definitely like nothing I've ever seen before, although it does get bland and boring after a while. We were also wondering if these states used to be composed entirely of forest, and then vast areas of trees were removed in order to have corn and soybean fields. If so, wow...that's a LOT of work. Are there any other crops that we didn't see?

We drove briefly through Wisconsin and then ended up in Chicago. It was my first time ever in Chicago. I was impressed with the city (having lived in NYC a few years ago myself). Chicago seems a bit more toned down than Manhattan, and a bit quieter. I felt like I had breathing room and was able to walk around with ease. The "skyscraper" area of the city, however, seemed MUCH smaller than NYC, but it was also much cleaner than NYC. The people were nice though, and we had lunch there. I enjoyed it.

Then, we went up into Michigan and spent the third night at Kalamazoo. Nothing to talk about here lol. The next day, we went to Cedar Point amusement park in Sandusky, OH. Awesome park, and awesome views of Lake Erie.

On the fourth day, we spent the night in Streetsboro, OH, and then returned to Connecticut on day 5.

This was an awesome trip, and certainly not one that most people would spend their precious vacation time at. But I feel good about being able to tell people that I've been throughout much of the Midwest, because most people in New England only spend their vacation at the same old places over and over and over and over again: Florida and Cape Cod. Ugh!

Thanks for reading
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 07-26-2012, 11:19 PM
 
Location: The Old Dominion
774 posts, read 1,424,042 times
Reputation: 1172
Quote:
So basically, most of these states seem almost entirely occupied by corn and soybean fields!
Midwesterners may hate me for saying it, but I always say how glad I am that people are willing to live there and grow things for me to eat!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-26-2012, 11:26 PM
 
Location: The canyon (with my pistols and knife)
13,223 posts, read 17,966,293 times
Reputation: 14673
Quote:
Originally Posted by Archguy View Post
Midwesterners may hate me for saying it, but I always say how glad I am that people are willing to live there and grow things for me to eat!
I tip my hat to the Texans who grow all the beef that I eat.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-26-2012, 11:43 PM
 
2,970 posts, read 2,751,817 times
Reputation: 6564
Yes, I never did understand the mentality of going back to the same place over and over in such a large varied country as the USA. Trip looks interesting. Yes you are correct about the scenery (topography) gets boring from the western parts of Ohio through to the Mississippi with only an occasional topographical anomaly. Yes, the native midwesterners are more laid back and talkative.

Glad you enjoyed eastern Ohio. Ohio is an interesting mix if you draw a diagonal line from CLE to CIN everything east is for most part beginning of western escarpment of appalachian plateau. Lots of nice rolling hills, river ravines carving the land. Western portion is mostly flat. Then if you draw another line of the old Connecticut Land Company tract to separate North and South (Western Reserve) you get Northeast which has a laid back Northeastern feel and the remainder of rural north and rural south. Most of Ohio and parts of indiana were all forest when first settled with interspersed meadows. Historical writings also indicate (perhaps hyperbole) that a squirrel could travel from Ohio to Mississippi via trees. When settled Ohio had an extensive squirrel problem due to vast Oak, Hickory, Beech, Butternut forests.

No reason to sing in Kalamazoo? "A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I got a gal - in kalamazooo, zooo, zooo, zooo..."

As a region (Midwest) our great farmland coupled with proximity to freshwater Great Lakes coupled with lower cost of living portends long term sustainability. Food - Water staples of life.

With various degrees of drought being reported throughout region, I'm curious from your observation, did any areas you travelled appear stressed?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-27-2012, 12:31 AM
 
Location: Michigan
4,571 posts, read 7,036,454 times
Reputation: 3599
I find it fascinating how fascinated Noreasters are with the Midwest. It's like a new frontier for them.

But yea, I've been through Illinois on a clear sunny day and seeing nothing but flat open terrain is pretty eye-opening at first. Then you kinda want to close your eyes after the first few minutes. It's also pretty crazy passing through after an ice storm and there's nothing to block the wind.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-27-2012, 04:46 AM
 
Location: Bel Air, California
21,328 posts, read 21,900,953 times
Reputation: 33512
looks like a good route but you should've spent more time driving the Mississippi Great River Road if you drove that far to get to it.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-27-2012, 06:57 AM
 
892 posts, read 1,081,107 times
Reputation: 1054
Thanks for the recap. Just wondering why you bypassed Cleveland and Pittsburgh-- you were SO close!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-27-2012, 07:22 AM
 
1,251 posts, read 2,188,960 times
Reputation: 890
Quote:
Originally Posted by nep321 View Post
We were also wondering if these states used to be composed entirely of forest, and then vast areas of trees were removed in order to have corn and soybean fields. If so, wow...that's a LOT of work.
Mostly prairies and grasslands.

And yeah - you have to be careful not to succumb to road hypnosis while driving through these places sometimes. The lack of/monotony of the scenery combined with highways that seemingly go completely straight for eternity can make one drowsy
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-27-2012, 07:28 AM
 
Location: E ND & NW MN
4,806 posts, read 9,432,256 times
Reputation: 3556
Come up to the Red River valley of eastern North Dakota and far northwestern Minnesota. This is one of the flattest area of the U.S. An old lake bed there are no small hills or anything. I like the open prairie and ag land....we grow lots of sugar beets, corn in some areas, lots of wheat, and some potatoes. Something about the wide open spaces makes me feel free and open...

Glad you enjoyed your trip. I think big city folks are as interested in the rural Midwest as many small town folks are interested in big cities....craving the unknown and want to know if it is like it is on TV.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-27-2012, 08:40 AM
 
Location: Paris
1,706 posts, read 2,050,645 times
Reputation: 990
Quote:
Originally Posted by STLgasm View Post
Thanks for the recap. Just wondering why you bypassed Cleveland and Pittsburgh-- you were SO close!
+1 Also staying up in Michigan a bit longer, since you already did go out of your way just for Kalamazoo, to hit Detroit. You would've hit a lot of the region's major cities this way.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > General U.S.
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top