The Pan Am Classic Rally 2017
June 14 to July 13, 2017
From the Atlantic to the Pacific on one of the World’s Great Drives – Option to finish in San Francisco (21 days)
The great pioneers who opened up America took months if not years to cross this great continent and thanks to them we can enjoy the best of the USA in just 30 days. From the old colonial east coast town of Savannah we can now drive to the cutting edge west coast without having to look over our shoulder to see who is on the horizon.
We can enjoy the music cities of Memphis, the home of the blues and Nashville, famous for its Grand Ol’ Oprey and take in the stunning pan handles, Blue Ridge Mountains the amazing canyons and deserts that proved such a barrier for the early settlers.
Our Pan Am Classic Rally is mainly a competitive event for cars up to 1978 traversing the Southern United States from Savannah to Durango before heading up the Sierra Nevada’s and Rockies through the old cowboy territory. As we head north we take in the best parts of California before finishing in Seattle. A mix of dirt roads, mountains, country roads and occasional main roads, it explores the trails and tracks normally only known to locals. The route has been created by Roger Hunt, the foremost authority on the byways of the USA. Being a competitive event he will also be the Clerk of the Course. It is also open to those who want to take a more leisurely drive in our Touring Class plus you can finish in San Francisco if the full 30 days is too much. Stage 1 is from Savannah to San Francisco where we stop for the 4th of July celebrations and stage Two is from San Francisco to Seattle.
If you like your competition, you will love this event with its variety of terrains, test and regularity challenges. Coupled with that you will take part in a remarkable journey through the lesser known parts of this great country. We do incorporate some rest days so there’s time to stop and admire some of the great sights, including the Grand Canyon and Yosemite among many. In other words not everything you see will be in your rear view mirror!
Most of us imagine the USA to be connected by long tedious straight interstates and we agree with you that these are no fun, so we have looked for and found the by-ways, the back-yards and the local roads that give you a real picture of America. Stop and eat at a diner, climb mountains, drive the Tail of the Dragon, cross Death Valley, see Monument Valley, admire the great Cottonwood Canyon, follow the Blue Ridge Mountains, see the Antebelem south and most of all enjoy the journey.
Drive 1. Savannah to Spartanburg. Starting in Savannah, a great port on the Atlantic, the rally heads up to Spartanburg on a mixture of tarmac and gravel. 287 miles/459kms
Drive 2. Spartanburg to Knoxville. From Spartanburg we drive the Blue Ridge Mountains on our winding way to Knoxville. 298 miles/477kms
Drive 3. Knoxville to Nashville. On Drive three we cross the state line into Kentucky before returning to Tennessee and staying at Nashville, the legendary home of Country Music. We take a day off here to take it all in. 254 miles/406kms
Drive 4. Nashville to Memphis. Music stays with us for the next few days as we take to the rolling hills of the Bible belt to Memphis, best known for Elvis Presley and his popular tourist attraction Gracelands. 316 miles/506kms
Drive 5. Memphis to Fayetteville. Day five takes us onwards through the Ozarks on empty gravel and tarmac roads. We end the day in Fayetteville. Not far from the legendary Route 66, which, while still romantically linked with the road trip, is no longer the main route north. 347 miles/555kms
Drive 6. Fayetteville to Amarillo. Next up is Amarillo and a flirtation with Route 66. Apart from Amarillo featuring in a number of songs it is the largest city in the Texas Panhandle and the real start to cowboy country. The majority of the roads round here are mainly tar but we will be taking you on some gravel as well. 312 miles/499kms
Drive 7. Amarillo to Taos. From Amarillo we travel to Taos in northern New Mexico’s high desert, bounded by the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Inhabited by native Americans for centuries it is known for its historic adobe (earthen) buildings. 289 miles/499kms
Drive 8. Santa Fe to Durango. We get into some serious canyon country now as well as the deserts of New Mexico. Here the cowboys of legend roamed. Once again we find some exciting gravel to spice up the competition before stopping in Durango. 254 miles/406kms
Drive 9. Durango to Moab. From Durango we head through the Rockies on an original stagecoach route switching between tar and gravel all day. Tonight we stop in Moab, Utah, the Colorado River crossing point of the Old Spanish Trail. 252 miles/403kms
Drive 10. Moab to Page. Today we head from Glenn Canyon and Lake Powell as we drive towards Page in Arizona. Splendid sandstone canyons weathered and sculpted by the wind provide an amazing backdrop to the driving. 333 miles/533kms
Drive 11. Page to Las Vegas. On our way to Las Vegas now in the hot and arid desert where there are more sandstone canyons and gravel roads before arriving in the gambling capital of the world. Drive off to see a show. 369 miles/590kms
Drive 12. Las Vegas to Porterville. Death Valley and the Sequoia forest in the Sierras – deserts to mountains in a day . We cross the Serra Nevada mountains to Porterville and are now heading to the West Coast. 370 miles/592kms
Drive 13. Porterville to Morro Bay. Now into California we have rolling hills and twisting roads. Initially on gravel and then tarmac before we stop at Morro Bay on the Pacific. 227 miles/363kms
Drive 14. Morro Bay to San Francisco. The Big Sur, Monterey and Highway 1 are great highlights as we head north to San Francisco – the city by the bay. 256 miles/409kms
Drive 15. San Francisco to Yosemite. Californian wine country today as we head inland to the Fish Camp just outside the Yosemite National Park. 229 miles/367kms
Drive 16. Yosemite to Lake Tahoe. We head back down the mountains to the hot plains through forests, lakes and mighty trees. Tonight we stop in Lake Tahoe, a major winter resort. 266 miles/425kms
Drive 17. Lake Tahoe to Eureka. A change of scenery again as we circle great volcanoes and traverse the mountain roads to once again stop by the Pacific Ocean at Eureka. 359 miles/575kms
Drive 18. Eureka to Galice. Quiet and scenic forest roads today as we once again find the lesser travelled routes to Gaice. Roads mainly tar with gravel sections. 225 miles/360kms
Drive 19. Eugene to Florence. Forest roads and little used tracks today take us to our overnight halt at Florence, USA. Delightful spot. 180 miles/288kms
Drive 20. Florence to Canon Beach. More great roads as we drive through Oregon state into Washington. 218 miles/348kms
Drive 21. Canon Beach to Seattle. The last leg through Washington forests and a run in to Seattle on a mix of tarmac and gravel provide a fine end to this event. 236 miles/378kms
While you may feel that the USA is a wide open plain, it is in fact one of the best driving countries in the world with a huge variety of surfaces and terrains which can be challenging and exhilarating at the same time. During the day we make sure you have a great drive in the evening we choose appropriate accommodation with ample parking. Breakfast is included and so are most of the evening meals.
We will provide the mechanical back-up and will be taking a doctor for those little ailments.
All roads have been checked and the route is completely open. However, many of the roads are unmade dirt rather than tarmac.
June and July are the ideal time to go across the whole route. In the centre and plains it will be hot during the day but cooler at night.
Competition all the way
Most evening meals
Hotels and breakfasts
Our experienced team
Classic Country & Western locations
Photographer and Video
Daily results service
Roger Hunt route
The Sierra Nevadas