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The Great Texas Road Trip

by Staff

Texas is likely the only state where one can drive 3,000 miles within the confines of its borders — save for a trot through California and a route around Alaska during summer months. In other words, you can apply the word “epic” to a road trip without ever leaving the Lone Star State. It’s a hell of a task, no doubt, but it’s a task we gleefully took on.

The idea was to show the amazing breadth of the largest state within the contiguous U.S. To reveal its hidden gems. To experience its diversity — geographically, culturally, and otherwise. And to express astonishment over its massiveness.

Giving myself nine days to accomplish the above, I created an itinerary, prepared my feet for whole lot of pedal pushing, and set across this great land in my 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee.        

I would take off for the Panhandle in mid-January and link up with my friend and longtime road companion, Kevin, in the Concho Valley town of Miles. He and I would then wander Texas, hitting each of the state’s most significant geographic regions while driving 3,011 miles. To put that number in perspective, driving from San Francisco to New York City, coast to coast, is 2,906 miles. We beat that mark by over 100 miles while never once stepping outside the state.

We’d avoid interstates, all-too-common stops, fast-food restaurants, and push ourselves to shed a light on the nooks and crannies of this one-time republic.

In the end, while proud to have completed such an ambitious trip, we quickly realized that Texas is far too immense for us to do this beautiful state justice in the period allotted. With the miles we traveled in the time we had, the trip became a feat of endurance rather than a pursuit of discovery.

But that’s not to say we didn’t do our darndest. To the contrary, if you click around the below links, we think you’ll find a number of revelations about the state we call home. And we certainly hope it gives you the itch to do a little discovering yourselves. I certainly can’t wait to get back on the road.

                     Days 1–2: Fort Worth  >> Canyon >> Miles

                     Day 3: Miles >> Marfa

                     Day 4: Marfa >> Uvalde

                     Days 5–6: Uvalde >> Beeville >> Kirbyville

                     Day 7: Kirbyville >> Mason

                     Days 8 –9: Mason >> Hamilton >> Home

                     The Great Texas Road Trip Playlist and Game

By the Numbers

Miles: 3,011

Gallons of gas: 144

Tires replaced: 1

Cups of coffee consumed: 22

Burgers eaten: 5

Towns driven through: 163

Counties visited: 78

Dirt roads traversed: 3

Donkeys petted: 19

State parks entered: 4

Historical markers read: 6

Live armadillos seen: 1

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