Perhaps it is a stretch to claim, as AirJourney does in promos like what's shown below, that this is a deeply historical commemoration. But I flew much of this route in a small plane nine years ago (start in Minnesota, then down to Nebraska, then west) and to this day recall many vivid scenes, which I also described in my book Free Flight. The incredible breadth of the Missouri River, which in many stretches looked as it might have in the days of L&C. The carvings of Mt. Rushmore outside Rapid City, SD, which from above look surprisingly tiny and netsuke-like. The splaying delta and estuary of the Columbia River at the other end of the journey, at Astoria, Oregon, where it meets the Pacific. And a lot in between.
It's not a "rational" way to spend your time or money, but I've never forgotten the experience or regretted spending time and money in a similar venture. If you're not a pilot yet -- there's just barely time!
James Fallows is a staff writer at The Atlantic and has written for the magazine since the late 1970s. He has reported extensively from outside the United States and once worked as President Jimmy Carter's chief speechwriter. He and his wife, Deborah Fallows, are the authors of the 2018 book Our Towns: A 100,000-Mile Journey Into the Heart of America, which was a national best seller and is the basis of a forthcoming HBO documentary.