Seattle to New York City

Posted on 19 Nov 2006

November 4th, 2006 – I was driving across Montana before I actually realized what I was getting into… a seriously long drive. Seattle, the city of Starbucks coffee, is located in the northwest of America, roughly 2800 miles (4500 km) drive from New York City. Wouldn’t it be great to drive all the way across the U.S of A? Coast to coast? Well.. that’s what I was thinking, and I had five days to get across.

I have been working as a Software Engineer in Seattle for five years now. After having finished a particularly long project I decided it was time for a small vacation, and driving across the country was always on the list. So after a little packing and staring at maps, a couple of friends and I started the drive. Our goal was to make it to New York City in five days (when I had a return flight booked… no way I was driving back).

The drive took us through thirteen states – Washington, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York.





Washington was fairly familiar. Idaho was very short with only one mountain pass that was rather scary at night and with rain. Montana was the longest stretch of road ever, luckily it was broken up by a detour into Wyoming to see Yellowstone National Park. Yellowstone was awesome, however I think it would have been more awesome if we were there during summer. We happened to arrive on the very last day they allowed people in, and most of the park was covered in snow as it is situated from 5000 to 8000 ft. The most interesting things were the hot springs and two buffalo we found grazing on a field (I was told that there were many more buffalo, but I guess they were all hiding from the crazy cold weather… probably near the hot springs).






Next it was onto South Dakota where the driving started to get scary. Middle of the night, driving on the highway, fog, low visibility and what else happens? Deer start jumping all around the highway. After narrowly missing one we started noticing all the carcasses on the side of the road and decided it was best to stick to daytime driving. The next days driving started at sunrise – 6am.

The next few states passed quickly as we were into the routine of driving. Chicago went by, Indiana, Ohio, and before we knew it we were on the east coast and I-90 had turned into a tollway. Our next big stop was Philadelphia, home of the Liberty Bell and cheese steaks. The Bell was interesting, the cheese steak was yummy.




And finally after four days we arrived in New York City. Overall the journey was great fun and in hindsight not as difficult as I had imagined.