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BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter)
BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/24/21 7:39 a.m.

I may have a chance to take a sabbatical at work next year and it feels like it might be time for a road trip.

Odd set of way points, though, at least by normal people standards.

Not sure about PIR and the route to get there - I might just choose to go via Yellowstone instead as I've never been there.

Of course the interesting question is - what are the odds that I'll be able to hit a HPDE at each track if I give it, say, 6 weeks?

I'm hoping that Laguna Seca is still going to be around and accessible by then (and not a housing development). After all, that's one of the main reasons to go out there.

RossD
RossD MegaDork
2/24/21 7:46 a.m.

We are going to Yellowstone in June and I hope the Beartooth Highway is open by then. Switch backs in a laiden Grand Cherokee!

Buy your pass for Yellowstone prior to your arrival if you choose to drive through it. Be prepared for slow travel through the park however, lots of RVs and looky-loos.

There are some cool scenic roads leaving Elkhart lake (Riad America). Fun for spirited driving.

 

BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter)
BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/24/21 7:54 a.m.

In reply to RossD :

We usually have an annual national park pass. Didn't get one last year, but I'm pretty sure I'll get one once Shenandoah NP is open again for traffic. Slow traffic in an NP is almost a given, isn't it? At least that's my experience with Yosemite and Grand Canyon.

RossD
RossD MegaDork
2/24/21 8:16 a.m.

Our park pass looks to be specific to Yellowstone. This will be my first national park trip so I am not sure if slow going is typical or not. 

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
2/24/21 8:18 a.m.

In reply to BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter) :

What would you call something like this?  One Lap of...

 

 

There are some other tracks within that route too.  Are these all "bucket list" tracks or just what was on the way.  With little detour you could also choose from:

Nelson Ledges, Ohio

Mid-Ohio

Autobahn Country Club, Chicago area

Brainard

New Orleans

Roebling, GA just north of Jacksonville

There are more too.

BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter)
BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/24/21 8:27 a.m.

In reply to John Welsh :

It's kinda on the tip of my tongue but I can't quite figure it out. One lap of USA maybe?

Several of the tracks are bucket list ones - like Laguna, Road America and COTA - whereas others are mostly waypoints. If the opportunity arises I would definitely stop at some of the tracks you mentioned. A lot of it depends on HPDE availablility.

BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter)
BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/24/21 8:31 a.m.

In reply to RossD :

You can get either a pass specific to a park - which sounds like the one you got - or you can get the annual pass that allows you basically unlimited access to all National Parks for a year: https://www.nps.gov/planyourvisit/passes.htm

IME slow going is pretty normal in National Parks and speed limits tend to be low.

We usually get the "America the Beautiful" pass as we have multiple NPs close and like to just stop by other when the opportunity arises.

Placemotorsports
Placemotorsports GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
2/24/21 8:34 a.m.

Could also hit up Yosemite since you are going through CA.  Love it there and can't wait to go back.  Just noticed you are in Berkeley Springs, start off the trip with a Roman bath.

BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter)
BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/24/21 8:39 a.m.

In reply to Placemotorsports :

There will be a side trip to Tahoe anyway to visit some friends I haven't seen for a few years, so the plan after that might include Yosemite and Sequoia. I'm also planning to swing by the Grand Canyon and maybe some of the other National Parks and National Monuments that aren't that far off the route.

Re the Roman Baths - I have a bit of an 'in' there as my wife works at the State Park .

Placemotorsports
Placemotorsports GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
2/24/21 8:45 a.m.

Lol, awesome.  A good friend of ours is the park manager. :)

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
2/24/21 8:47 a.m.

With the Tracks and Parks this could then be called One Lap of America the Beautiful

BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter)
BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/24/21 8:48 a.m.

In reply to John Welsh :

I guess I know what to call the trip report thread!

BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter)
BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/24/21 8:49 a.m.

In reply to Placemotorsports :

Small world.

eastsideTim
eastsideTim PowerDork
2/24/21 8:56 a.m.

Don't miss Yellowstone.  If someone will only see one national park in their life, that is the one to hit.  I like Yosemite, and it is always impressive, but having been there in different seasons, it's better in the spring/early-summer.

 

APEowner
APEowner GRM+ Memberand Dork
2/24/21 8:56 a.m.

Fun!  A couple of thoughts for you.

Pacific Raceways is worth a visit if you can get on track.  The really cool parts are only accessible by the track so I don't know that it's worth swinging by just to see it but running the back part of the track through the woods is pretty awesome.

If you adjust your route to come through Albuquerque and I know you're coming there's a pretty good chance I can get you some track time at Sandia Speedway.

bluebarchetta
bluebarchetta Reader
2/24/21 8:57 a.m.

It's too bad the phrase "living the dream" has been overused to death, because this trip really would be living the dream for a most of us.  Best of luck to you in making it happen.

Stefan (Forum Supporter)
Stefan (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/24/21 8:57 a.m.

That is a pretty epic road trip!

There's also Oregon Raceway Park, Pacific Raceways and The Ridge that you could hit in the PNW

https://oregonraceway.com/ aka ORP

https://pacificraceways.com/ aka Seattle International Raceway

https://www.ridgemotorsportspark.com

Also if you need another way point in Cali:

https://www.sonomaraceway.com (Sears Point is pretty iconic)

As much as I love PIR, since its where I grew up, its probably the least exciting track in the area since its built on a flood plain.  Its still fun to drive and there is skill required to getting a good lap.  The others all have rolling hills, etc.  Tha said, PIR is in a fairly busy city with a few interesting things to do away from the track, so that could be a plus for anyone else traveling with you.

Sears Point is in the middle of California's Wine Country.

There really isn't much available through "The Middle" of the country:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_auto_racing_tracks_in_the_United_States#Permanent_road_and_temporary_street_circuits

There's Gimli in Manitoba.  Its a bit of a drive, but its along your route:

http://gimli.ca/m/gimli-motorsports-park/

and here's some more to look at if you're interested:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_auto_racing_tracks_in_Canada

ultraclyde (Forum Supporter)
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
2/24/21 9:04 a.m.

Just FYI, it looks like your marker for Road Atlanta is probably Roebling Road outside Savannah. Road Atlanta is in fact Northeast of Atlanta.

hobiercr (FS)
hobiercr (FS) GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
2/24/21 9:58 a.m.

If you come to FL think about adding Sebring to your potential stops. 

bmw88rider (Forum Supporter)
bmw88rider (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
2/24/21 10:48 a.m.

There are actually a pretty decent number of raceways in the mid-west. 

You can hit RPM, Heartland Park-Topeka, and Hastings Motorsport in the nebraska/kansas area then hit one of my favorite places, High Plains in Colorado. Stop in Denver for a day, Run up to Rocky Mountain National park and then up through Grand Tetons and Yellowstone. 

 

On the way through, The Museum of American Speed and the Strategic Command museum are both really cool in Lincoln and in the middle between Omaha and Lincoln. 

BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter)
BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/28/21 11:49 a.m.

Thanks for all the tips on the waypoints. I've tweaked the route a little bit - unfortunately Google Maps appears to be unable to handle the number of waypoints I need, so I had to split it into two maps and still don't get every waypoint on them.

 

You'll have to use your imagination to put some of the additional waypoints on there but I think this is the general route now. My wife was thinking about getting her Oregon massage license so I'll make a stop in Portland to meet up with her (hence the non-race stop).

Sonoma was a good idea, although I'm familiar with the lack of runoff there from the other side of the fence. As I've never had a chance to drive there, I think it's a good idea to include that.

I also expect that there will be a few more side trips. Obviously a lot of this depends on how many HPDEs etc I can hit up on the way.

I took out VIR because I can get there from here. Plan for this year is to do more HPDE to see if I still enjoy it or if my "HPDE break" is a take more permanent. I don't necessarily want it to be that but like Toyman, I occasionally feel a bit meh about it. If I decide to give up HPDE/Time Trials, I'll turn this into a motorcycle trip instead.

mazdeuce - Seth
mazdeuce - Seth Mod Squad
2/28/21 11:59 a.m.

Depends on time. I'd swing north through Michigan and come at RA from the north. I'd also swing back north again through the Dakotas/Badlands and that and then come at High Plains from the north again.  I have strong opposition against driving across Iowa and Nebraska unless trying to make time. 

BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter)
BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/28/21 12:02 p.m.

In reply to mazdeuce - Seth :

I hear you about Nebraska and Iowa, I've driven through there a couple of times. Time is a factor in the sense that I want to hit an HPDE at at least four places - Road America, Laguna Seca, COTA and Daytona, with Road Atlanta and Sebring as potential gravy. Right now I'm not even sure I can fit all of this into a single trip.

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
2/28/21 12:51 p.m.
BoxheadTim (Forum Supporter) said:

Sonoma was a good idea, although I'm familiar with the lack of runoff there from the other side of the fence. As I've never had a chance to drive there, I think it's a good idea to include that.

Have you been to Thunderhill?  Given that you're driving right past it on the way down the 5 you should think about hitting it too. :)

I expect Laguna will still be there next year.  Track day availability varies during the year, months with one or two major events in them it can be pretty scarce, other months there are plenty.

Track day availability at Sonoma is pretty limited.  There are rarely more than 4 or 5 days per month.

Sounds like a fun trip!

 

Streetwiseguy
Streetwiseguy MegaDork
2/28/21 12:53 p.m.

Turn north in Montana, and you can hit Castrol raceway in Edmonton, too.  Then head west through the Canadian Rockies, hit the tracks around Vancouver.  Then its only an hour or two down to Seattle.

The drive from Calgary to the coast is nicer than the Montana-Idaho-Washington route, in my opinion.

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