A young Australian family living in Canada is finishing the trip of a lifetime as they visit all 50 U.S. states in just five months, and potentially smash a world record in the process.
Harper Yeats, born April 22 of this year, is slated to break the Guinness World Record for the youngest person to visit every American state, as she and her parents race to reach Vermont by Oct. 18, their 50th and final destination.
"I can't see any better opportunity where both parents get to be with the kid, making up the rules as we go," mom Cindy Lim told ABC 13 News Now of their journey. "We get to see how we operate as a family, see how we want to raise her. What we want to show her and teach her, we decide on the go."
Cindy and her husband Tristan Yeats are both natives of Australia, but recently relocated to Canada, where they welcomed their first child. As both Cindy, 31, and Tristan, 34, receive paid new parenthood leave, they wanted to do something epic during their time off with their new little girl.
"We have a pretty simple lifestyle where we don't buy a lot of things, we really value experiences," Cindy said.
The unique opportunity and the couple’s mutual passion for travel inspired their decision to purchase a Jeep Cherokee, pack the essentials – including some must-have baby gear – and hit the road, ABC 13 reports.
According to Good Morning America, Cindy and Tristan together previously visited 19 states, and long dreamed of seeing all 50. Realizing that baby Harper could become the youngest member of the All Fifty States Club, they committed to the adventure and kicked off their journey in June, just a few weeks after their precious baby was born.
In the months since, the family has documented their travels on Instagram, where they share a photo of Harper at each state line for their following of nearly 15,000.
Beginning in Maine, traveling south through New England, and stopping everywhere from Harvard to Washington, D.C., Texas, California – even hopping to Alaska and Hawaii – the busy new parents say that they’ve gotten grief from some critics for traveling with a newborn baby on a long-term, cross-country road trip.
Cindy and Tristian, meanwhile, say they’re taking it one day at a time and the experiences they are enjoying as a family are worth all of the trouble.
"We were in North Dakota and we were in the park, and she was just laughing so hard. That kind of stuff is really memorable,” Cindy told ABC 13.
"She did her first roll in Iowa. So all of these places in America, we're never going to forget them because she's hit so many milestones across the country,” she added.
Though the baby girl will not remember the marathon trip, her parents say they hope the quest will inspire her as she grows up.
"We hope she'll get some type of sense of adventure and the travel bug we've got," her mom said.
The record for the youngest person to visit all 50 states is currently held by Ethan Connor from Northern Ireland, who won the title at age 2, according to Travel Goal Getter.