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North America: Winter Road Trips

December 21, 2013

It could be over the river and through the woods or through the desert. No matter where you go, winter is still a great time for a road trip.

You can’t cruise with your convertible top down in most places, but you can still enjoy a memorable drive. No matter where you’re headed, here are few tips to make your winter road trip the best ever:

Check up. Before you hit the road, hit the mechanic. If you’ll be travelling through icy, snowy, or cold places, make sure your car is equipped with proper tires and working parts—pay special attention to the brakes, heater, and defroster. Double check that your windshield wipers are in good condition.

Be prepared. Always travel with your gas tank half full, especially in cold weather. It may mean more frequent stops, but better that than stuck in the frozen tundra.  Pack an emergency bag to leave in the car that contains food, water, good shoes, and warm clothes and blankets, plus an ice scraper and flares. You never know where you’ll end up and need something extra. Plan ahead. Know your route before you head out. If you’re more the spontaneous type, at least have a few ideas of where you might go and how you’ll get there. Check road conditions before you leave—there are plenty of apps to keep you updated on the road.

Be entertained. Road trips are all about the scenery and enjoying the journey, not just the destination. To make your trip extra fun, pack a few playlists, books, and magazines. Bring games to play or questions to answer with your travel companions. Even if you are a minimalist packer, there is always the classic road trip games—ABC game or license plate search, anyone?

Head south. The birds do it, why shouldn’t you? For better road conditions and warmer weather, head to the southern half of the world, where winter really means summer. You’ll find your share of snowbird retirees, but a taste of warm weather could be exactly what you need to break up the winter blues.

Need some recommendations of places to go? If you want snow-covered mountains, try a drive through British Columbia, Canada. Or drive along the continental divide in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming for some stunning scenery. For a warmer drive, head down the famous route 66 or cruise from Texas to Florida. Anywhere you go is sure to be an adventure.

No matter where you go, travel safe. Winter is the perfect time to explore new places. So hit the road and plan your next road trip right here on Trekeffect.

Michelle Kaiser

Michelle Kaiser