Your Guide to Traveling Through the Great Plains

Your Guide to Traveling Through the Great Plains

The Great Plains region has miles of flat landscape with vast grasslands. While you will find scattered towns throughout the region, much of it includes open skies and straight roads stretching to the horizon. Sometimes you may feel like you are driving in the middle of nowhere. The long stretches without civilization require additional packing and preparation to ensure a safe and reliable trip. 

What to Pack

While you may have experience with long road trips, the wildness of the Great Plains brings some additional challenges for travelers. Here are a few things to pack for a smooth journey:

  • Travel fund (including cash)
  • Roadside emergency kit
  • Spare car key 
  • Maps
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Baby wipes
  • First aid kit
  • Phone power bank
  • Entertainment
  • Water bottle
  • Umbrella
  • Extra layers of clothing
  • Blanket
  • Snacks
  • Plastic bags

These essentials make the trip more comfortable and safe. When that middle-of-nowhere gas station is out of soap, you will have some hand sanitizer. Your favorite munchies and some nutritious options will ensure you never go hungry. You will also have all the necessities to care for your car.

Entertainment also plays an essential role. Have some music or podcasts on your phone to listen to as you drive. Even when the radio cuts out, you will have something to listen to. Passengers might choose options like books, games or movies to stay entertained.

How to Travel Safely

Those long, uninterrupted stretches of road may seem daunting for those used to driving near cities, but a few simple tips can help keep you safe and happy:

  • Check your car: Inspect wipers, tires, brakes and fluid levels before you leave and monitor these things as you travel. It is also helpful to know basic maintenance tasks like changing a tire.
  • Fill the tank: Whenever you see a gas station, consider topping off the tank. You may not spot another station before you need to fill up.
  • Look ahead: When you stop for the day, check road reports and weather forecasts to avoid surprises. Also, watch for obstructions, potholes or wildlife that might block the road as you drive.
  • Be flexible: Both new and experienced Great Plains travelers can encounter hiccups throughout the journey. Plan extra travel time for everything from an extended rest break to a deflated tire.
  • Prepare to disconnect: Remote areas often mean spotty cell coverage. Ensure you have downloaded any necessary information, like maps or trip tickets.
  • Watch the sun: Ensure the sun is overhead while driving. The rising or setting sun can make visibility difficult. Night driving is also more difficult in remote areas.
  • Take breaks: The long drive and similar scenery might make you tired or distracted. Switch drivers regularly, or stop at a campground for the night to rest and recharge.

Rest up at WaKeeney KOA Journey

Planning a Great Plains road trip? The region has roaming wildlife and rolling hills, but travel through the area comes with some unique challenges. The long route might leave you wanting a break along the way. WaKeeney KOA Journey offers the perfect midpoint in your travels between Denver and Kansas City. Reserve an RV Site, Tent Site or Camping Cabin to rest up along your journey.

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