Traveling to the UP

Summer vacations can be the high point of anyone’s year. The long and warm summer nights, sipping margaritas on the beach with you loved one. If you are clad den with these miniature copies of yourself than there is no doubt that you would be enjoying the summer no sipping a martini, but frolicking in the surf with them. Conversely, if can also be the down fall of many families. There are far too many stories of family vacations that did everything but bring the siblings, parents and other kinfolk closer together. Can anyone remember the movie “National Lampoon’s Summer Vacation”?

One of the most beautiful driving trips of the summer was taken by me as I left the Queen city of Cincinnati and drove 8 hours to the gracious isle of Mackinac. The drive took me through a few of Ohio and Michigan’s greatest cities to the meeting place of the Lake Ontario and Lake Michigan. As stated, we start our trip at the banks of the Ohio River in Cincinnati Ohio. The Great American Ball Park and Paul Brown Stadium behind us, we never look back as we traveled up Interstate 75. We pass the United States’ first zoo as we make our way to Dayton Ohio.

I have been to Dayton many times, mostly for the great sports bar called Roosters and the new and innovative gay dance club…. I had never been north of Dayton on interstate 75, It was strange, to say the least, to see how much farmland there is once you get past the city of Dayton. The deterioration of the roadway did not deter my fervor for traveling the open road and seeing the most of Ohio as I could. With two very sleepy friends in the back seat and an over excited one in the passenger seat. I trekked on.

Less then a few hours later (and a multitude of bathroom breaks along the way) we made it to Findley Ohio. You may not think that there is much in this central Ohio city, but Findley boasts being the Flag Capital of the world. What, pret ell, do you think that means? Well, but of course it means that this city has been charged with the patriotic tasks of producing Ol’ Glory, the official flag of the United States. Along Interstate 75 you could see why this small city was called this. Everything from a sign stating its Flag name to a statue of a star spangled four legged animal graced the seen along the high way.

Traveling on, the two backseat passengers were wide awake and now graining my nerves, but I kept everything jovial. As we neared Toledo Ohio, the three riders-along were welcomed (I guess more because I had been driving non stop since 8am that morning). We worked our way around the Glass Capital of the world via two separate by-passes. I hindsight, I guess we could have drove straight through the city to see more of Ohio’s northern sister city, but we stood steadfast with the Trip-Tick provided to us by AAA and we the recommended route.

Surprisingly, the trip through Michigan was very uneventful. If you call the beautiful wildlife, the picturesque forestry, the vibrant colors found in the landscape and the less than un-perfect lakes and other waterways found in that glorious state to be uneventful. The island of Mackinac and its bridge are the crowning jewels of this oven mitted shaped state. These two pieces of Michigan’s land and history are so appropriately named because of their proximity near the northern most point of the state.

All in all, traveling the open highway of interstate 75 through the Buckeye state of Ohio and continuing through Michigan on a clear summer’s day is a great way to see both of these majestique states. Make sure that you take your time and that you are not to rushed trying to get to your destination. Looking back on this trip I wish that I had heeded my words so that I could take in some of the sights and attractions that could be found on this trip. Well, there is always a next time. Where will you go on your next trip?

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