Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Alaska Trip Statistics: Before the Fact

Our Alaska trip begins in five weeks! That's still a ways away, but I've already gone ahead and tabulated some useless driving statistics in advance. My "stat projections" are listed throughout By the Numbers, but since I know nobody looks at that page, I'll just put it here, too.

Miles driven: I expect to put 9,800 miles on my car during this trip. My car's odometer will probably be around 43,000 when we start the trip, so it will reach 50,000 in British Columbia or Alberta (probably), and will be all the way up to 53,000 upon our return. That sounds like a lot, but on a per-day basis, we'll actually be doing less driving on this trip than we did on last year's US-50 trip. I mean, we're only doing 544 miles per day, on average. Only!

County visitation: Now...with a trip of this magnitude, you'd think that I would visit all kinds of new counties along the way, right? Well...maybe. I came up with was 53 new counties. (Plus 26 Canadian "counties".) That's kind of disappointing, but not unexpected - driving through Canada and Alaska is not the most efficient way to add to my county map. But that's not the point. The point is, it doesn't matter how many new counties I get on this trip, as long as I get the one new state that has eluded me: Alaska. This trip will also check another four Canadian provinces off my list, leaving only Newfoundland and Labrador (one province), Northwest Territories, and Nunavut. Is it possible to drive to Nunavut?

Nights by county: This stat is boring, but nonetheless, here are the counties in which we'll be staying overnight throughout the trip:

Three nights: Yukon (The entire Yukon Territory is one "county"/census division. This will make Yukon the favorite to finish 4th for the year in the 2010 Nights By County battle, which I think is pretty cool.)
Two nights: Kenai Peninsula AK, Denali AK (Alaska has 28 "counties" - like Canada, they call them something else. Of those, we'll visit 9 and stay overnight in 5.)
One night: Hennepin MN, Regina SK, Grande Prairie AB, Skagway AK, Anchorage AK, Fairbanks North Star AK, Peace River BC, Yorkton SK, Dane WI, Ross OH (most likely)

Interstates driven: I plan on getting 1,652 new interstate miles on this trip, including four never-traveled-before interstates (39, 55, 74 West, 88 West). Yeah! And no, even though Alaska technically does have "interstates", they don't count.

It just dawned on me that I've never actually posted the complete trip route. What's taken me so long?

View Actual trip to Alaska in a larger map

Figuring this stuff out in detail five weeks before the trip does take some of the fun out of it. This trip might be a little too "planned" for most people. But what can I say? I was bored. And, besides, this is one less thing to do the week after we get back.

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