1 / 10

America's most thrilling roads

The Airline Road (Maine)

Maine's Route 1 from Brunswick to Ellsworth is simply a spectacular drive. The famous route hugs the hardy Maine coastline like a rubber band hugs a lobster's claw, and does have very challenging stretches. However, when the masses descend upon the region in July and August, Route 1 can become a parking lot of rabid tourists looking for nautical antiques. Time to head toward Airline Road, a more demanding alternative just a few miles to the north. Route 9 stretches from Bangor to Baring, over 50 miles of well-paved road, high-speed sweeping turns, and blinding s-curves. Traffic, what little there is, moves quickly – very quickly mid-week. Keep an eye peeled for moose and pie stands by the side of the road.

(Photo: Alamy)

America's most thrilling roads

The speed and agility of modern cars are wasted on too many roads. In same way that off-road vehicles can't be tested by peastone driveways, souped-up sedans can't be pushed to their limits on suburban cul-de-sacs. In order to drive – truly drive – a car, modern commuters have to head out of their way to one of the rare stretches of American asphalt designed to push vehicles to their limits. These winding, curving sections of tarmac give great cars a chance to show off their muscle and great drivers a chance to remind passengers why the American road was once considered the purest embodiment of freedom.

More from Men’s Journal:

8 Essential Road Trip Rules

50 Great American Places To Visit

25 Best Adventure Trips to Take Right Now