The Suitcase Lady


April 3, 2018, 8:02 pm

Last week, I was driving west across the 311 miles of Pennsylvania on I-80, our second longest cross continental road, which goes from the doorstep of New York City to San Francisco. A ways in, I spotted a large sign which said: Highest Point East of the Mississippi on I-80, Elevation 2,250 Feet.

This spurred my brain to wonder where the tallest of the tall peaks were located on my side of that mighty river. My first guess was Mount Washington in New Hampshire.  I asked my husband who was riding in the shotgun seat to get out his cell phone and do a little research. Road trips are great opportunities for educational experiences.

My guess was not in the top ten. The ten highest peaks are all in the southern Appalachians either in North Carolina or Tennessee. Mount Mitchell outside of Asheville, North Carolina, is the highest at 6,684 feet. But height-wise, my guess wasn’t too far off. Mount Washington is 6,288 feet. And it certainly gets top prize for horrendous weather conditions of deep snow and 100 mile per hour winds.

Pennsylvania might not have the tallest mountains but they do have other claims to fame. They have a cracked bell. And there is that city entirely devoted to the production of chocolate and another that is the home of Peeps. Plus, shortly after the “Highest Point” sign was an I-80 exit for Punxsutawney, home of Phil, the world’s most famous groundhog. Height is not everything.

P.S. In case you find yourself driving west of the Mississippi River on I-80, the highest point on that side of the river is Sherman Summit in Wyoming at 8,640 feet.

1 Comment for this entry

  • John

    We confirmed Mt. Mitchell this past weekend on our trip to Asheville NC area! Blue Ridge Parkway was lovely. I have also been to the top of Mt. Washington and the weather was indeed dreadful.