Friday, April 12, 2024

England vs. Idaho

Don stumbled upon a map of England depicting a cross-country trip across the length and breath of England. The trip lasted fifteen hours and doubled back and forth, zigzagging across the nation.

He got to wondering how such a trip would compare to Idaho, so he pulled up a map of the state and tried to recreate a journey of the same length, staying strictly within the boundaries of the state.

You'll notice the road is more of a backwards "J" shape rather than the zigzag. That's because there are many remote parts of Idaho that don't have roads, notably the massive Bitterroot Mountains in the central part of the state that straddle Idaho and Montana. There are very few passes bisecting these mountains.

So how does Idaho compare to England? Here are a few stats: 

England:    51,320 sq. miles
Idaho:        83,546 sq. miles (about 1.6 times larger)

England:    56,500,000 (almost 29 times more people)
Idaho:        1,950,000

England:    1,124 people/sq. mile
Idaho:        24 people/sq. mile (most of whom are concentrated in the larger cities)

As you can see, Idaho has a lot of catching up to do. On the other hand, it doesn't have the phenomenally rich history of England either (I'm an English history buff). Here in Idaho, a house that's 100 years old is ancient. England has homes dating back centuries and even millennia. How cool is that?

Lots to be said for both sides of the Atlantic!


  1. Back in 1974 we moved from Illinois to Texas. I noticed that there were not many old homes down here. Back in Illinois most were from around the civil war, down here not much from before the 1950's.

    1. We are in Texas, too. Seems that the hot/humid environment takes a harsh toll on buildings. The wood rots fast. Homes that are brick or stone last longer, which must by why England has so many old, old homes. They were built out of longer lasting materials.

  2. I would have tacked on the Magrudor corridor running through the Frank Church river of no return area but it does end up in Montana.

  3. Have you ever visited the oldest building in Idaho? It's an old church not far from Wallace, built cheaply by Jesuits and natives.

  4. I used to watch a program called " Back to the Country" which was a program where they showed old homes around the English countryside mostly, to prospective buyers. It was fun to watch and see those homes, but I couldn't see going there. A lot of the rooms and doorways were very low. Taller men just often didn't fit places they might otherwise have liked.

    To compare England and Idaho, Idaho is somewhere I would have liked to visit in younger days. It's beautiful. The way things are in our country today, I may never go anywhere again. Not because of destinations. But God knows what mess you might encounter en route. Oh well. I'm not very adventurous.

  5. As an English person, i can not comprehend why this route takes in the M25- unless it is as a warning. on a bad day, you could spend ten hours simply trying to travel this horrendous road.

  6. Lets HOPE Idaho NEVER catch's up with the UK.