Taking a different route

By , July 8, 2014 6:50 am

Do you ever feel the urge to try a new route to get somewhere, even if it’s a place you’ve traveled to before? (Ha, and I mean this quite literally – driving or running or what have you. Of course, the question could take on other meanings, too.)

We’ve been on the road a lot lately, mostly to places we’ve visited before, but to some new places, as well. We’ve been checking out different routes to the places we are familiar with, and trying somewhat separate routes (go a different way there than back) to the new places.

It’s reminding me how much I enjoy the excitement of “seeing what’s out there.” I get way overly enthusiastic when I see a brown informational sign on the highway. WHAT COULD THAT POSSIBLY BE?!?!?! I feel like I need to pull over to check out every little “point of interest.”


I don’t, but I mentally note them, and sometimes research them later. 

On our Thursday drive to Iowa, we went through southern Wisconsin instead of our typical Illinois to Iowa route. It was mostly curvy, hilly back country roads. The landscape was so beautiful, it made the drive fly by. We drove through a cut rock road that was really neat! I’d like to drive that route again and stop to take photos. 

And on our trip back on Sunday, we went a bit out of the way to drive through a little town we had been in the night before for fireworks. We had driven there in the dark and just that was an interesting ride – we were curious to see what it would be like in the daylight. It was another curvy, hilly road – even more so than the one we had taken a few days earlier. It added a few extra minutes to our trip, but I felt like it was totally worth it to check out the landscape and little towns on the route. 



We have a lot of traveling this summer, and I am excited to see where else we end up. Sometimes I explore new routes for local travel, again, just to see what else is “out there,” but I am definitely more likely to do it during leisure trips!

28 Responses to “Taking a different route”

  1. Kiersten says:

    I like to do that running, especially when I am visiting my Mom. There is one road that goes all the way around the island, with a lot of little roads that branch off and go towards the water. I like to try and explore them all.

  2. I always want to do this when we drive to Cincinnati. We take a fairly scenic route but I’d love to diverge and go through Oxford, Ohio, where Miami University is located. Plus, I’d like to stop off and actually visit the little towns we drive through.

  3. Tiina says:

    Some of my best trips have been getting lost somewhere that the wind took me!

  4. Marcia says:

    We often alter our course to hit a small town. I definitely note the brown signs too. I laugh when I see them for mine since it’s not much of an attraction any more, sadly.

    • kilax says:

      Ha ha, for your area? I sometimes still see some things around us that I didn’t know about and need to check out 🙂

  5. Pete B says:

    Very scenic pics! I just assume all of the Midwest is flat, but I guess I need to get out more. By “mental note” do you mean snap a quick smartphone picture of a sign? My smartphone holds a lot of my mental notes over the years! 🙂

    • kilax says:

      Sometimes the mental note is a picture, but a lot of times, it’s a screenshot of where we are in google maps, or an email to myself 🙂

  6. Kristina says:

    I always find myself wishing during our road trips that we could actually ENJOY the drive – we seem to be in a rush to get from point A to point B, so we pass by all of these sites and add to the list of “places that we want to visit one day”. BUT it’s also nice to explore familiar places and find something new there too.
    Enjoy your adventures!

    • kilax says:

      Is that how you felt on your most recent one? It sounded like you did a lot of stopping! 🙂

      • Kristina says:

        I think we still have the attitude of “get on the road and go and THEN rest and explore”. But I love a good road trip, and this summer’s feels like a luxury!

  7. Michelle says:

    We don’t take a lot of road trips…it’s usually “we’re on a mission and get to wherever we are going, ASAP.” LOL! I love your idea though, and am trying to be more fliexible in my routes.

  8. I used to try to take a different route on my walk to/from work to mix it up. When I was in High School my friends and I used to play a game called “Car Twister” where we would spin the Twister board, go right left or straight for 10 spins and then see where we ended up. When we got there we had to go inside. Haha, we were super cool!

  9. kapgar says:

    I do this all the time for my work commute mostly because I have to find ways around accident scenes and construction sites that pop up willy nilly.

    I also do this for my exercise routes. I started with just one that I got tired of quickly but has since expanded to about a half dozen core routes with offshoots that I try out every so often.

    • kilax says:

      Yeah! Changing it up for exercise routes keeps it (somewhat) fresh! I get so sick of my winter routes by the time winter is over, it’s a joyous return to the trails. LOL

  10. jan says:

    Okay we need to road trip together because I always want to see every point of interest too. LOl! Last summer we drove 5 miles down a very narrow gravel road for a Mississippi River lookout that we never actually found (I think we took a wrong turn). Once I took the Lincoln Highway instead of the freeway all the way from DeKalb to where I live, which took a LONG TIME. Road trips, when you have no set time to get somewhere, are fun!

    • kilax says:

      It sounds like we need to! And isn’t the Mississippi area so fun to explore?! These pics are actually from Balltown – have you been there?

  11. Mica says:

    Exploring a new route is so fun (unless it’s unintentional and you’re in a hurry. Then it’s the worst.)!

    I guess this is related, but have you ever noticed if you take one route to a destination and then a [slightly] different route on the way back, instead of just retracing the route you took on the way out? I notice I do this sometimes, but I’m not sure why.

    • kilax says:

      Yeah, there are a few places I go around here where I leave during rush hour and take one way, then take the more direct way on the way back, that is less affected by traffic 🙂

  12. ChezJulie says:

    I think you know that I like little road trips. 🙂 I agree that it’s fun to take different routes and check out different towns. Sometimes it’s no big deal, but you never know what that little dot on the map is going to hold!

  13. Erin says:

    I….am too anxious to get where I’m going and tend to get irritated with too much stopping and starting. However, I’ve also never taken a trip with the goal of just exploring what’s out there on the way somewhere else so I don’t know how I would deal with that 🙂

    That being said, I love to mix up my running routes and try new streets. It’s how I know where so much stuff is around the city.

  14. martymankins says:

    Lately, thanks to road construction, I’ve had to change my normal 3 mile drive to work. And I end up going down different roads that some days, end up also having road construction.

    When I go downtown to visit my daughter, I like to take different roads just so I can be prepared for…. road construction.

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