70-degree weather is a Goldilocks temperature for many: not too hot, not too cold, just right. And it turns out you can take a lengthy road trip that keeps you close to an average high of 70 degrees every day.
In 2015, climatologist Brian Brettschneider came across something curious.
“I had been working on animations of how temperatures progressed throughout the year. As a happenstance, I noticed that on Jan. 1, there were areas that had a high temp of 70 [degrees], and there seemed to be some location that was 70 practically the entire year. It wasn't something I was looking for; it was something I just noticed.”
So, he had a little fun with that discovery, plotting a couple of routes that would keep a hypothetical traveler near an average high of 70 degrees the whole year.
He estimates it’s been shared millions of times (maybe more than his joke “favorite Thanksgiving pie” map), so it's clearly resonated with people.
“Road-tripping is classic Americana. Everyone has done a road trip before and tried to plan it around the weather,” Brettschneider says. “This map project quantifies something that many people have done in some form or manner.”
He’s since updated that original map using the newest set of climate normals from 1981 to 2020, creating a few paths within the Lower 48 and another that runs into Canada and Alaska.
He created three routes through the Lower 48: One spends time along the coasts, another stays mostly interior and a third connects the two.
A more ambitious path nearly 14,000 miles long goes into Canada and as far north as Fairbanks, Alaska.
The 70-degree road trip doesn’t guarantee temperatures at that mark the entire time, but the odds tip in your favor. Of course, you could always run into rainy weather... but snow, not so much.
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