I am now ALL IN on going for all 50 states. I have 22 to go right now. Here they are by region:
Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland.
I've got a lot of work to do here but fortunately, there are several opportunities to double with Saturday/Sunday combos. 1 trip, 2 races, 2 states. Maybe even 2 countries.
I may actually repeat Pennsylvania because it's the only one that I failed to break 2 hours.
Midwest and Heartland:
Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota.
Montana, Utah, New Mexico, Washington, Wyoming, Hawaii
I have my heart set on a few of these but some others are more flexible depending on how it works with my schedule. I'm already looking forward to the next big trip. Here are the ones that are most definitely on my radar:
New York- United Airlines NYC half in mid-March. It's a lottery but I've heard the odds of getting in are pretty good if you are from out of state. The course begins in Central Park and goes through Times Square before ending near Wall Street all in Manhattan. I'm entering the lottery for 2017 and I'll find out by early December.
Maryland- Island 2 Island in April- Point to point course from Ocean City to Assateague Island. This one will be special to me because I spent a summer in nearby Salisbury but haven't been back since 2002. If I don't get into NYC, this will be the Spring destination race in 2017. I'll road trip from Philly up and down the Delmarva peninsula.
Connecticut- ING Hartford in October- This one is attractive because I haven't been here since I was a toddler and have no memory of it at all. Also appealing is that there is a half the next day in Newport, Rhode Island, which is less than 2 hours away.
South Dakota- Spearfish Canyon in July. This one is at 5,000 feet elevation but it's all gently downhill so it won't be nearly as tough as Tahoe. It's located less than 1 hour from Mt. Rushmore, which is a must see. This one is the front runner for the summer destination race.
Michigan- Detroit Free Press in October. I planned on doing it this year but it worked out better with Tahoe. It'll be in the running for next year as well. I'll be more likely to do it if I'm in top shape but if I'm in good but not great condition, I'll likely opt for a double somewhere else. The course begins and ends in downtown Detroit but goes into Windsor, Ontario for 4 miles en route.
Washington- Rock n Roll Seattle in June- I could see a Mariners game, Mt. Ranier and road trip to Vancouver, British Columbia. It will be a nice break from the Alabama heat and it's the dry season out there too. It would be really cool if there's a Saturday/Sunday combo in Seattle and Vancouver but I might be willing to spend a whole week out there if they are a week apart.
New Mexico- Thunder Half in Santa Fe in September- This is another mild altitude downhill course. I'll road trip to Amarillo, Texas. West Texas has an entirely different flavor than East Texas.
Now here are the flexible options:
Wyoming- There are 3 in Jackson Hole near the Grand Teton Mountains just south of Yellowstone. All 3 will be basically the same course. 2 are in June and one is in September.
Hawaii- Can't go wrong here. Something in Honolulu would be easier logistically. It would be really cool to land here and break up a trip to Australia.
Utah- I've got 3 options near Salt Lake City in May, June and September. I'd prefer May so I won't have to deal with training in the heat. All are screaming downhill courses, which I've learned does not mean easy. Still, I feel this is my best chance to BQ so I'll save it.
Montana- I've got the option to run Yellowstone and Grand Teton (Wyoming) but they are a full week apart. A combo with a Calgary race could be do-able even if they are a week apart because there is so much to see with Glacier National Park and the Canadian Rockies.
Minnesota & Wisconsin- There should be a good chance to double here. Ideally, I'd want to do something in the Twin Cities with Eau Claire but could stretch it to Madison. Milwaukee would be tough. Most likely, it will be a late Spring- early Summer weekend.
Nebraska & Iowa- Des Moines with either Lincoln or Omaha should work but I'll take just about any Saturday/Sunday combo here.
Maine/New Hampshire/Vermont/Quebec- There could be 2 doubles here. Pretty much anywhere in all 4 can be done on back to back days. I know of one race in NH that ran the day before RnR Montreal.
Massachusetts- Y'all know the one I really want to do but that's looking remote at this stage. It's got to be a Boston race and there's one around Memorial Day that looks good. I may not even have to rent a car because the course is right next to the airport but I'll probably want to see Cape Cod.
New Jersey & Delaware- It doesn't really matter where either one is located. It will be close enough for a Saturday/Sunday combo. I'll use Philly as my hub and do some touring there.
EDIT: The phone duty schedule came out at work today and it will make it tough to do South Dakota. I'm leaning towards Grand Teton instead. I'll take a full week off and do a different race in Montana the following Saturday.