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Best Midwest Drives

No Better Places To Be. No Better Way To Get Out There.

When the moment calls for an epic drive, these are the routes to check out in the Midwest. This area is home to some of the most scenic and geographically diverse roadways out there. Navigating your way through beautiful river bluff country, the unimaginably vast great lakes, amazing rock formations, seas of corn fields and thick forested canopies. Oh, and let’s not forget the curves you can accelerate in and out of on your way to an abundance of historic diners, scenic overlooks, historical markers and national monuments.

Great river road map
numer 1

Great River Road - Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Missouri

This incredible ride, perfect for a Slingshot, follows the route of the mighty Mississippi. Since it’s made up of not one single highway but multiple stretches of interconnected roadways, each is marked by the iconic Pilot’s Wheel sign for easy navigating. The Great River Road will take you from the origins of the mighty river into the Twin Cities then down to St. Louis, Missouri. Along the way, you’ll drive in and out of bluff country, farmland, river towns and more, with riverside rest stops, bluff-top views, historic landmarks, museums and even the Anheuser-Busch Brewery. If you want to extend this drive outside the Midwest, you can continue all the way to Mississippi and the Gulf of Mexico.

North shore area drive map
number 2

North Shore Scenic Drive - Minnesota

If you’re looking for a shorter ride, with all the scenic sights and iconic stops, then this 150-mile trek along the shores of Lake Superior from Duluth to the Canadian border is a great choice. The North Shore Scenic Drive is well known for its rugged beauty with its jagged shoreline, pine forests, crashing waves and stunning waterfalls. Must-stops include the picturesque Split Rock Lighthouse perched atop a 130 ft. cliff, the highly photogenic Gooseberry Falls, Grand Portage National Monument and numerous other state parks along the way. Of course, no trip up the North Shore is complete without a stop at the infamous Betty’s Pies in Two Harbors. So yum!

Pro Tip:

PRO TIP: Plan out your trip with RIDE COMMAND®. You can map out your route and pick waypoints along the way, including gas, food and lodging. Available as an app or access onboard select Slingshot models. DOWNLOAD THE APP >

Tunnel of trees area drive map
number 3

Tunnel Of Trees - Michigan

Mark this ride down as a must-experience if you’re ever in Michigan. It follows an old Native American trading trail, cut through a thick forest of pines and hardwoods. The Tunnel of Trees gets its nickname from places where the trees on either side have grown together overhead to form a canopy that you cruise beneath. This ride is especially beautiful in the fall when the colors on the trees are popping in bursts of red, orange, yellow and green. It’s a relaxing ride with brief glimpses of Lake Michigan with a few places to stop along the route. Plus, as a special bonus, you can jump on the ferry to Mackinac Island at the end of the tunnel to spend a quiet weekend exploring the island.

The triple nickel area drive map
number 4

The Triple Nickel - Ohio

Similar to the Tail of the Dragon in North Carolina, this winding, 34-mile route is perfectly suited to the Slingshot R, whether you have the intuitive AutoDrive transmission with paddle shifters or the sporty 5-speed manual transmission. The Triple Nickel is an isolated and challenging drive that follows Route 555 through Ohio. It’ll throw plenty of twisties at you to keep your attention as you travel through rolling hills, rural stretches of farmland and the picturesque Wayne National Forest. You’ll need to manage your gears, acceleration and braking as you navigate this beast.

Rock River Run area drive map
number 5

Rock River Run - Illinois

Considered to be one of the favorite routes among scenic lovers in Illinois, this 42-mile stretch of asphalt follows the winding Rock River. It serves up pleasant curves to accelerate in and out of. Along the way, the Rock River Run will treat you to beautiful river views and quaint stretches of farmland. This relaxing ride offers several places to unwind, including two state parks. Be sure to check out the Blackhawk statue and the great overlook in Lowden State Park.

More Can't Miss Scenic Routes

Take in the beautiful scenery with a road trip along any of these Midwestern roadways. Head out.

Midwestern roadways map
number 6

Needles Highway - South Dakota

Plan accordingly, because this route through the ruggedly beautiful Black Hills region is only open from April to October. Needles Highway is a must-see road trip, taking you through Custer State Park on State Highway 87, featuring sharp turns, beautiful views, granite spires and narrow tunnels—including the Needles Eye Tunnel, which is a mere 8 ft. 9 in. wide. If you’ve got some extra time, be sure to take a few scenic detours to visit Mount Rushmore, the Crazy Horse Memorial and Sturgis.

number 7

Route 66 - Illinois, Missouri, Kansas

Head down this iconic highway carved out of the heartland of America’s storied past. It all starts in Chicago’s Grant Park on Lake Michigan and meanders its way into St. Louis with a must-stop at the Gateway Arch, before motoring on to Tulsa, Oklahoma. Nicknamed “the Mother Road,” U.S. Route 66 offers small towns, roadside diners, historical markers, fields of corn, the mighty Mississippi River and the Ozark mountains among its must-see attractions. Those looking for a longer ride are welcome to continue all the way to the West Coast.

number 8

Ohio River Scenic Byway - Indiana

This 302-mile pleasure drive has Slingshot written all over it. If you’re looking for a relaxed trip with plenty of places to get out and explore along the way, don’t miss this drive through the heartland. The Ohio River Scenic Byway will take you past farm fields and incredible river views with potential stops to visit the river caves and caverns, camp under the stars, canoe the river or visit local wineries. You can even hit up a casino along the way to try your luck.

number 9

Killdeer Mountain Four Bears Scenic Byway - North Dakota

Take in one of the most picturesque areas in Western North Dakota. This scenic byway will treat you to an open road that offers the rugged Killdeer Mountains, vast prairies and breathtaking views of the Little Missouri River as your backdrop. Along the way you can learn about Native American history at the Three Affiliated Tribes Museum and snap a picture or two atop the Crow Flies High Butte Scenic Overlook.

number 10

385 Gold Rush Scenic Byway - Nebraska

This might be one of the most scenic and historic roads in the nation—its 131 miles bore the burden of gold diggers at the peak of the gold rush. An ideal setting for a drive, this scenic byway features panoramic valleys, rolling plains, pine-covered canyons, soaring buttes, and of course, gold mines. Four must-see-sights along the way include Chadron State Park, Carhenge (a classic car version of Stonehenge), Dobby’s Frontier Town and the majestic Courthouse and Jail Rocks.

There's No End To The Amazing Places You Can Go

This country of ours was simply made to be taken in by road trip, with so many routes, highways and byways full of scenic views, historic stops and the occasional roadside oddity. So, start planning your next adventure to anywhere. There’s nothing like it, especially when you’re experiencing it all from the open-air cockpit of a Slingshot. Enjoy the ride.