The US Highway 12 or US 12 is one of the oldest highways in the United States, stretching from Aberdeen, Washington, in the west to Detroit, Michigan, in the east. However, its route is not a straight line, and it passes through several states, including Washington, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Michigan. The highway passes through many beautiful and historic places, making it an excellent road trip option for adventure lovers. In this article, we will dive deeper into the US 12 route and discover where it starts and ends.
The Western End: Aberdeen, Washington
At the western end of the US Highway 12 is the city of Aberdeen, Washington. Located in Grays Harbor County, the city is the largest community in the region, with a population of around 16,500 people. Aberdeen is known for its timber industry, which has been a significant source of income for the area for many years. Other attractions of the city include the Aberdeen Museum of History, the Kurt Cobain Memorial Park, and the D&R Theatre.
US 12 and Olympic Peninsula
From Aberdeen, US 12 goes north along the Olympic Peninsula. The peninsula is a beautiful region with gorgeous beaches, scenic mountains, and rainforests. It’s a perfect spot for adventure lovers, hikers, and wildlife enthusiasts. Olympic National Park, located in the peninsula, is one of the most visited parks in the United States, attracting millions of visitors annually. Other attractions of the peninsula include the Hoh Rain Forest, Lake Quinault, and the Makah Cultural and Research Center.
Idaho and Montana: The Middle Section of US 12
US 12 enters Idaho through the Lolo Pass, located in the Bitterroot Mountains. The pass is a beautiful spot for a road trip, offering stunning views of the mountains and the neighboring forests. As the highway passes through Idaho, it offers breathtaking scenery, including the Clearwater River, the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness, and the Bitterroot Mountains.
The Beartooth Highway in Montana
From Idaho, the highway enters the beautiful state of Montana, where it passes through some of the most stunning scenery in the country. One of the highlights of the route is the Beartooth Highway, a 68-mile stretch of road that winds through the mountains, offering panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. The Beartooth Highway climbs to an altitude of over 10,000 feet and is only open in the summer months.
The Eastern End: Detroit, Michigan
The eastern end of US 12 is in the city of Detroit, Michigan. Detroit is the largest city in Michigan, with a population of around 670,000 people. The city offers a mix of historical, cultural, and entertainment attractions, including the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Motown Museum, and the Comerica Park. The city is also known for its contribution to the automobile industry, with several automobile manufacturers headquartered in the area.
The Michigan Heritage Route
As the highway passes through Michigan, it becomes known as the Michigan Heritage Route. The route offers a fascinating journey through Michigan’s history, highlighting its Native American heritage, the automobile industry, and the importance of the Great Lakes to the region’s economy. Some of the attractions of the route include the Mackinac Bridge, the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, and the Henry Ford Museum.
The US Highway 12 offers a diverse range of attractions, spanning multiple states in the United States. From the scenic Olympic Peninsula to the historic Michigan Heritage Route, this highway offers something for every traveler. Whether you’re embarking on a long-term road trip or exploring a particular area, the US Highway 12 is one of the best options to consider. So grab your map, put on some good music, and hit the road!
Most Common Questions and Answers: Where Does US 12 Start and End?
- Q: What is US Highway 12?
- A: US Highway 12 or US 12 is one of the oldest highways in the United States, stretching from Aberdeen, Washington, in the west to Detroit, Michigan, in the east.
- Q: Which states does US 12 pass through?
- A: The highway passes through Washington, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Michigan.
- Q: What are some of the highlights of the US 12 route?
- A: The US 12 route passes through some of the most stunning landscapes in the country, including the Olympic Peninsula, the Clearwater River, the Beartooth Highway, and the Michigan Heritage Route.
- Q: Can I drive the entire length of US 12?
- A: Yes, you can drive the entire length of US 12, but it may take several weeks or months, depending on your pace and the attractions you want to visit.
- Q: Are there any specific regions along the US 12 route that I should visit?
- A: Yes, some of the must-see regions along the US 12 route include the Olympic Peninsula, the Beartooth Highway, and the Michigan Heritage Route.