1. Feeling squinty? The 2003 Large Scale Road Atlas features maps 32 percent larger than standard atlases. Includes special codes to punch into www.randmcnally.com for up-to-date news on road construction, traffic conditions, and other trip-planning information. $19.95 from the Rand McNally Map and Travel Store at Tysons Corner, 703-556-8688, www.randmcnallystore.com.

2. Reminisce about road trips from a bygone era with John Steinbeck's "Travels With Charley: In Search of America" (Penguin, $9) and life along rural back roads with William Least Heat-Moon's "Blue Highways" (Little Brown, $29.95). Before planning your next adventure, try Jamie Jensen's "Road Trip USA: Cross-Country Adventures on America's Two-Lane Highways" (Avalon Travel, $25). Once on the road, let Jane and Michael Stern's "Roadfood: The Coast-to-Coast Guide to 500 of the Best Barbecue Joints, Lobster Shacks, Ice Cream Parlors, Highway Diners and More" (Broadway Books, $17.95) take the guesswork out of pit stops. Leave the passport at home and still see Europe (sort of) with Carol Rudisill's "Drive to Great Britain Without Leaving America" (Northam Publishing, $12.95, not pictured).

Text and gift research by Anne McDonough -- The Washington Post