While neither scity at the end points of this road trip are typically through of as tourist destinations, a late summer drive along this route would be quite interesting. There will be praries and mountains and valleys and national parks all along the way for us to stretch our legs and enjoy. We are in for a 4 day trek covering 2187 miles. We’ll just be quartering up the days, so our approximately 68mph pace will mean a daily goal of about 547 miles.
DAY ONE (Saturday)
Unusually cool air is expected to develop behind a cold front moving out of the Great Lakes, setting up the terrible pattern of being cool when you get into the car, but too warm after driving with the sun beating down on you. Do you turn on the AC? Roll down a window? Heaven for bid you try to take off a layer while driving through central Illinois. A developing system in the central Plains will kick some clouds and warmer air north late in the day, but we will stay dry to start the weekend, stopping in Rudd in northeastern Iowa to finish our first of four days.
DAY TWO (Sunday)
That developing system in the central Plains is going to be a heck of a rain maker in Missouri and southern Iowa this weekend. As we get going, some of that might bleed into Rudd, and stay with us during the first leg of Sunday’s drive to Mason City. Unlike driving in the wake of the feature on Saturday, we will not be blessed with dry air and clear skies. Instead, expect moisture to wrap into the still developing upper level trough behind the leading edge of the feature, leading to cooling clouds and rain showers. This is a broad, open trough, and these clouds and showers will stay with us all the way to Wicksville, South Dakota, between Wall and Rapid City. This will be our stop to conclude the weekend. Hope the sleeping bag is warm!
DAY THREE (Monday)
One other difference between the Day One Great Lakes low and the Day two Plains low, is that the high pressure behind the trough will be much stronger in the northern High Plains. Expect it to settle in and keep things mostly sunny, dry and increasingly warm from Wicksville to Whitehall in southwestern Montana.
DAY FOUR (Tuesday)
There was a lot of rain in the High Plains this week, but the Pacific Northwest will remain completely dry through the 4 days we are headed out towards Yakima. The central Valley will remain very hot as we move in, and it will continue to be quite smoky throughout the region, as there is a continue threat for wildfire initiation to go along with the fires that are already raging. It will be hot and smoky in Yakima, so maybe find a spot with a good air filtration system.