Sea to Shining Sea: Driving Across the United States

Tom and I left St. Simons Island on April 24.  We drove the 800 miles to Ohio, spent two weeks there, and then headed west and north to San Juan Island.  Tomorrow we will take the ferry to our destination for the next four months.  2,500 miles from Ohio.  From Atlantic to Pacific in less than a month.  From sea to shining sea.

This is not our first time driving from one coast to the other.  We have been east from Ohio and west from Ohio but not from one coast to another.  We enjoyed the journey across the United States but we are ready to park the RV for a while.  Being in a new place every day is hard on our bodies and our brains.  Changing time zones every couple of days throws my sleep patterns way off.

But we saw some amazing things as we traveled from sea to shining sea.  We spent the night in campgrounds in Galesburg, Illinois – Jackson, Minnesota – Cactus Flats, South Dakota – Hardin, Montana – Missoula, Montana – and Ellensburg, Washington.  Tom kept the RV on the road through high wind advisories in South Dakota and Washington.  We stayed awake through two nights of severe thunderstorms in South Dakota.  Tom and I delayed our departure from Missoula because of a winter storm that dumped three inches of snow in a couple of hours.

We visited several National Park sites (more on those next week) and checked out a couple of touristy places including Wall Drug in South Dakota.  Tom navigated up and down more than 15,000 feet of mountain passes total.  We saw wind turbines and coal mines, huge farms and ranches that stretched across miles of scrub land and tiny towns.  We managed to get through the horrible Seattle traffic.

How do you entertain each other in the car for all that time?  We listened to Sirius XM which carries all kinds of music and news as well as Cleveland Indians games.  We listened to our favorite podcast, “That One Sports Show,” and tried out a few others.  I read the book, “The Pig War,” out loud to Tom and we talked about what I read. (“The Pig War” relates to the assignment we start on Sunday.)   I knitted and kept an eye on the paper map and sometimes on Google Maps.  We took lots of quick walks at rest stops to get our steps in every day.

The journey was wonderful.  Everyone should make a drive like this at least once in their life.  But we are glad it is almost over.  We are ready to learn San Juan Island in depth and have some contact with other people.

We traveled from sea to shining sea.  This road trip is history.  A new adventure awaits.