Fantasy summer road trip – part one

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The premise of this plan is that I get the kids up to Canada for a good part of the summer break.  My motives are a) escape as much of the FL heat as possible b) give the boys a chance to spend some time w/their grandma, aunts, uncles, cousins that they never otherwise see c) save me a small fortune on summer camp (which has the added benefit of avoiding having them eat fast food 5 days / week all summer long) d) let me get a reasonable amount of work done while accomplishing all of the above. The beauty of this is that a) the kids are old enough now that I should be able to work while they entertain themselves for a few hours and b) I’d be 2 hours behind the time zone I’m working in so I can modify my schedule and still have the better part of afternoons and evenings to do fun stuff.

Of course, far be it from me to keep a plan simple.  So, in that spirit (and further to my WIP Travel Bucket List plans) my mind is busily spinning this into a means by which to also put some check marks on that list.  It’s a long drive – a little detour here, a little detour there… I’m certain the boys have inherited my gypsy DNA and I’d like to give it a little help in expressing itself.

Of course, the wrench in this plan is that DH can’t take this kind of time off work.  Nor can he work from up there for that length of time.  Nor do I think he’d be too keen on not seeing his family for a month or more.  Of course, he’s also not keen on taking vacation time and flying to SK in summer or taking vacation time and doing the road trip up or back (and flying the other leg) either.  So, that’s a fairly large wrinkle in the plan but far be it from me to let a good road trip planning fantasy be tripped up (NPI) by these things.

The rest of this post is just me working out the details where I don’t forget and can’t lose them.  It is almost certainly not of interest to anyone else (unless you’re a friend / relative en route and want to get together as we pass through.)  This will almost certainly get revisited several times over the next few weeks.  Summer camp registrations being what they are, however, there’s only so much time before this fantasy plan moves to actual plan status or “maybe another” summer status.

Day One – leave early for Jacksonville (4.5) , hang with the the KMB fam (hey K, if you’re reading this – no I don’t have any specific dates maybe early July-ish)

Day Two – leave very early for Mammoth Caves Nat Park (11.25), set up camp,

Day Three – start early on cave tour(s), leave early evening for Chicago (6.5).  Check about apt. or hotel

Day Four – Museum of Science and industry, Millennium Park

Day Five – Lincoln Park Zoo, stock up on food

Day Six – leave early for Badlands (12.5)  set up camp

Day 7 – up for sunrise over Badlands (5:00-5:15), drive loop, hike.  Drive to Mammoth Site (2 hr), tour Mammoth Site. Depending on time, drive on to Rushmore, (1 hr)  set up camp and visit monument.  Otherwise, do visit in morning.

Day 8 – Rushmore if not the day before.  If time, visit Crazy Horse site. Otherwise, drive to Theodore Roosevelt National Park. (5)  set up camp

Day 9 – TRNP .  leave for sisters  (4.5 hr) by late afternoon.

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