Trip Details and Rankings!

Trip Start Jun 02, 2011
Trip End Sep 25, 2011

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Flag of United States  , Pennsylvania
Wednesday, September 21, 2011

We are back!

Everyone has been asking us about the trip details, the favorite states, and favorite destinations.  Well, here it all is. 

Trip Details:
Number of days:    112
Number of miles:    12,951     (average miles per day = 115)
Gallons of gas:        1,521     (that works out to 8.51 miles per gallon)

Favorite States:

To 'calculate' the favorite states, each girl force ranked each state from 1 to 27, and then points were assigned in groups of 5 to get a reasonably objective view.  The girls each did this individually, and there were no major outliers, especially in the top half.  Some of the states that rated toward the bottom, like New Hampshire, were impacted by the weather because all it did was rain when we were there...but the rating is the rating!  There was a tie for the 'winning' state, with both North Dakota and Kentucky receiving a perfect score!

1) North Dakota (15)
2) Kentucky (15)
3) Oregon (14)
4) Maine (13)
5) South Dakota (12)
6) Idaho (12)
7) Vermont (11)
8) Michigan (11)
9) Massachusetts (11)
10) California (11)
11) Iowa (10)
12) Wyoming (9)
13) Washington (8)
14) Rhode Island (8)
15) Montana (8)
16) Minnesota (8)
17) Connecticut (8)
17) Canada, BC (8)
19) New York (7)
20) Canada, Alberta (7)
21) Wisconsin (6)
22) Ohio (5)
23) Nebraska (5)
24) Indiana (5)
25) New Hampshire (4)
26) Illinois (4)
27) West Virginia (3)

Favorite Destinations:
This was a little more tricky, mainly because some destinations were larger than others (example:  Yellowstone National Park vs Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream plant).  But, what we got to was 52 locations, where each was rated on a scale of 1-5, and then those ratings were averaged to get an average.  For rating, I participated as well.  Only 1 destination received a perfect score, and thus is the WINNER:  Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota!  Even the destinations that ranked toward the bottom of the list were great places to visit, but when you do a force ranking something has to come out on top!

1) Roosevelt National Park    (20)
2) Olympic National Park (19)
3) Redwood Forest National Park (19)
4) Mackinac Island (18)
5) Acadia National Park (17)
6) Oregon Coast - HWY 101 (17)
7) Kentucky Horse Park (17)
8) Boston - Mayflower & Plymouth Plantation (16)
9) Cooperstown - Baseball HOF (16)
10) Boise, Idaho (16)
11) Glacier National Park (15)
12) Lake Louise Glacier Hike (15)
13) Yellowstone National Park (15)
14) Marshalltown, Iowa (15)
15) Louisville, KY (15)
16) Gettysburg National Park (15)
17) Whale watching boat trip (14)
18) Niagara Falls (14)
19) Sleeping Bear Dunes (14)
20) Icefields Parkway (Canada) (14)
21) Crater Lake National Monument (14)
22) Grand Teton National Park (14)
23) Badlands National Park (14)
24) Whistler, British Columbia (13)
25) Vancouver (13)
26) Mount Rainier National Park (13)
27) Crater of the Moon National Monument (13)
28) Mystic Seaport (12)
29) Rhode Island Lighthouses (12)
30) Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream Tour (12)
31) Pictured Rocks Drive & Boat Trip (12)
32) Zipple Bay Walleye Fishing (12)
33) Mount St. Helens Volcano (12)
34) Custer, SD - Wind & Jewel Caves (12)
35) Fort Peck Dam & Fishing (11)
36) Bruneau Sand Dunes (11)
37) Minuteman Missile National Monument (11)
38) Mississippi River, Illinois (11)
39) Fenway Park - Boston Red Sox (10)
40) Devils Tower National Monument (10)
41) Custer, SD - Mt. Rushmore & Crazy Horse
42) Linclon Farm, Illinois
43) Flight 93 National Monument (10)
44) Apostile Islands (9)
45) British Columbia lakes & fishing (9)
46) Omaha, Nebraska (9)
47) Vincinnes, Indiana (9)
48) Jasper National Park - Canada (8)
49) Sea-to-sky drive into Vancouver (8)
50) Lincoln Birthplace - Lexington (8)
51) Mammoth Caves National Park (6)
52) Beech Fork State Park - WV (5)
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mcgovern on

One metric we forgot to add: over 5,000 blog view to date.

Mrs. Weltz on

Thank you, McGovern Family, for including me on your wonderful journey! Welcome home!! :)

Ronell and Dan Anderson on

What an experience and your ratings were most impressive. I am sure this information will be valuable to others making trips but few will see all you got to see and do. We are happy to have you home for awhile and look forward to seeing you this afternoon.

Murphy's on

What a fabulous way to see the United States. We absolutely love all the pictures and commentary, and hope to visit many of the destinations you described. Thanks so much for including the Murphy family in your travels. We look forward to many more future trips:)!!

mom & Jim on

Welcome Home all! Amazing trip -great job driving, planning, blogging, cooking, taking care of girls, etc etc! Fun day yesterday!!

Alison Hughes on

Congratulations on finishing the first part of your journey!!! I have really enjoyed reading about your adventures these last few months. What a wonderful experience for you all to be able to spend so many days traveling this beautiful country! I know this adventure will be a true gift that the girls will never forget.

I remember my Mom and Dad (Uncle Dave and Aunt Linda) driving us all over the place in the backseat of our old 1984 mini-van and Honda Accord. At the time, some of the places we went seemed dreadfully boring, but now I understand what a precious time it was to not only be together, but to have experiences that nutured my curiosity of nature, sports, geography, literature, history, art, and culture. Your blog took me back to some of those same places, like the horse farms of Kentucky, and with all the beautiful (and funny) pictures of your travels, I picked out a few places I've never been to that I would like to explore with Lelia and Daisy to when they are a bit older.

Welcome home!

Wendy on

Thank you so much for including us in your blog. We have thoroughly enjoyed it and learned so much about our country. We are inspired to take a trip like this now...but much shorter or just in bits. Your insights and tips will really help us. Thanks again and welcome home! We are glad you are not moving!

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