The Best Ways to Use 80,000 Chase Points


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In mid-April 2022, Chase revived its once record-breaking offer on the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, raising the introductory bonus to 80,000 points. (If you happened to miss that news, here’s a brief recap: Earn up to 80,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on purchases within the first three months with the Chase Sapphire Preferred, a card that carries only a $95 annual fee but delivers excellent earnings rates, such as triple points on dining, streaming services, and online grocery purchases.)

With many new cardholders coming into a windfall of points, it begs the question: What are the best ways to spend 80,000 points? There are many options, but here are our five favorites.

Redeem points as $1,000 toward relief efforts in Ukraine

Chase points can be redeemed at 1.25 cents apiece with select categories under Chase Ultimate Rewards’ “Pay Yourself Back” feature. Categories typically change quarterly (previous ones have included Airbnb, dining, and groceries) but one that is around until December 31, 2022, is “Select Charities.” At that exchange rate, 80,000 Chase points are equivalent to $1,000 toward charitable giving. Donate directly through the national sites of International Medical Corps, International Rescue Committee, UNICEF USA, and World Central Kitchen, all of which are supporting relief efforts in Ukraine, and days later apply for statement credits through the “Pay Yourself Back” feature. Note: You don’t need to spend $1,000 for the credit. Even the smallest contributions can be erased as statement credits.  

Redeem points as $1,000 toward the travel of your choice

When points are redeemed through Chase’s Ultimate Rewards online travel portal, they are also valued at 1.25 cents apiece. That means 80,000 Chase points are equivalent to $1,000 toward travel. The Ultimate Rewards travel portal works like such familiar travel portals as Expedia, Orbitz, and Kayak. Simply search for the flights, hotels, car rentals, cruises, or vacation rentals you desire, and when you go to pay, choose the points option. It’s that easy! Again, you don’t need to spend all the points at once. 

Transfer points to international airline partners

Chase Ultimate Rewards points are transferable to eight international airline partners at a 1:1 ratio: Aer Lingus AerClub, Air Canada Aeroplan, Air France/KLM Flying Blue, British Airways Executive Club, Emirates Skywards, Iberia Plus, Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer, and Virgin Atlantic Flying Club. 

Though it’s increasingly hard to find great mileage deals using U.S. legacy carriers, it’s typically not as difficult on international legacy airlines. While this may require getting to know a new frequent flier program—and some may find that too advanced at first—it’s well worth the while. Case in point: I recently transferred 88,000 of my own Chase points to Air France/KLM Flying Blue and scored a round-trip business-class ticket between Miami and Paris. How? Capitalizing on a recent promotion of transferring Ultimate Rewards to Flying Blue at 1 to 1.25 ratio, I turned 88,000 points into 110,000 Flying Blue miles. With business-class tickets as low as 55,000 each way between the U.S. and Europe, I found dates that worked with my schedule and voila: I soon had a round-trip business-class ticket between Miami and Paris. Upon booking, the same flight for 110,000 miles was priced at over $4,000. Talk about maximizing those points!

Transfer points to hotel partners

Chase Ultimate Rewards points are transferable to three hotel partners at a 1:1 ratio. These are IHG One, Marriott Bonvoy, and World of Hyatt. The points of each loyalty program can be viewed as different currencies, and the most valuable one here, by far, is World of Hyatt. Point redemptions for the best-of-the-best within Hyatt’s greater portfolio (think: Park Hyatt, Small Leading Hotels, and Alila) max out at 40,000 points per night. Returning to my Paris example, I was able to book two nights at the Park Hyatt Paris at 40,000 points per night. Rooms at this property begin at €1,080 per night. Score!

Transfer points to domestic airline partners

Chase Ultimate Rewards points are transferable to three domestic airline partners at a 1:1 ratio: JetBlue TrueBlue, Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards, and United MileagePlus. Of this trio we find the best value in the programs of JetBlue and Southwest, which are both pegged to approximate cash values of 1.3–1.4 cents apiece. That means that transferring the entirety of an 80,000 bonus (and again you can transfer as much or as little as you want in 1,000-point increments) can yield up to $1,120 in value on JetBlue or Southwest flights. (Advanced tip: Those who took—or take—advantage of Chase’s Southwest credit cards offers and landed—or land—a coveted Companion Pass, can turn this $1,120 into $2,240 as passholders can fly Southwest with a companion for free, besides mandatory taxes.) 

Takeaways: Mix and match, stockpile, or spend

It’s important to note that Chase Ultimate Rewards points can be mixed and matched among the options above (sometimes in increments of 1,000 or even less) and that there’s no rush to spend them because they do not expire. These are simply some of our favorite examples of the myriad possibilities available to anyone with 80,000 Ultimate Rewards points (or more). We hope this has opened your eyes to the power of Chase Ultimate Rewards points and the power of the current 80,000-point introductory offer of the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

While the offers mentioned above are accurate at the time of publication, they are subject to change at any time, and may have changed or may no longer be available.

>> Next: 5 Credit Cards That Grant Additional Cardholders Free Airport Lounge Access (and More)



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Tips to use those credit card points for travel rewards


AT 11:00. FELICIA: MANY CREDIT CARD USERS RACKED UP A LOT OF TRAVEL POINTS DURING THIS PANDEMIC. TODD: BUYING A LOT OF STUFF AND NOW THAT COVID RESTRICTIONS ARE EASING, MORNING ANCHOR MARK KELLY REPORTS THAT WOULD-BE TRAVELERS ARE ITCHING TO USE THOSE POINTS THAT HAVE PILED UP FOR TWO YEARS. >> I’M FREE AGAIN. I CAN TRAVEL. REPORTER: ONCE COVID RESTRICTIONS LOOSENED LUBA GLICKSON COULD NOT WAIT TO TRAVEL. >> IT HAD ALWAYS BEEN ON MY BUCKET LIST TO GO TO THE BIMOLTRE TO SEE THE ESTATE. REPORTER: GLICKSON AND HER HUSBAND DECIDED TO FLY TO NOHRT CAROLINA INSTEAD OF A DRIVE AND THEY UPGRADED THEIR SEATS TOO. AFTER ALL THEY HAD ACCUMULATED ABOUT 150,000 POINTS DURING TWO PANDEMIC YEARS. >> IT’S A LOT. IT’S A T.LO ONLINE SHOPPING, AMAZON. GETTING SOME FURNISHINGS FOR THE HOUSE. >> WE ACCUMULATED QUITE A BIT OF POINTS. >> DOES IT SHOCK YOU? >> NO. >> YOU SAW THIS COMING. >> Y.EP P.YE YEAH. ESPECIALLY WITH THE PANDEMIC. PEOPLE ARE BUYING HOUSES, SPENDING ASTRONOMICAL AMOUNTONS DECORATING, THEY PUT EVERYTHING ON THEIR CREDIT CARDS. WE’RE NOT SURPRISED AT ALL. AND THEY WANT TO BURN THOSE POINTS AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE, BECAUSE PEOPLE HAVBEENE STUCK AT HOME. >> ANNIE DAVIS IS PRESIDENT OF PALM BEACH TRAVEL. SHE’S BEEN ADVISING HER CLIENTS TO BURN THEIR POINTS. 50,000 POINTS COULD SAVE YOU ABOUT $500 OFF AN AIRLINE TICK.ET BUT SHE SAYS YOU MUST ACT FAST. P>> PRICES ARE RISING, JET FUEL IS RISING, THE PRICE OF LAR ISBO RISING, THE COST OF FO ISOD RISING, INFLATION IS RISING. AND THESARE E TRICKLING ON. MY ADVICE TO YOU AND YOUR VIEWERS IS TO BOOK YOUR TRAVEL NOW. >> IT’S BECOMING A LTLITE TBI HARDER TO BE ABLE TO REDEEM BASICALLY FOR EXPTCEIONAL VALUE. >> LEE HUFFMAN IS A CREDIT CARD EXPERT AND HOST OF THE WE TRAVEL THERE PODCAST. HE EXPLAINS THAT THE LONGER YOU SIT ON YOUR PILE OF POINTS THE LESS VALUE THEY WILL HAVE. >> AIRLINES AND HOTELS HAVE TO ACTUALLY KEEP THOSE POINTS ON THEIR BALANCE SHEET AS FAR AS A LIABILITY FOR THEM. AND WHENEVER THOSE NUMBERS GET TOO BIG, THEY DEVALUE THEMO T BASICALLY ENCOURAGE PEOPLE TO REDEEM THEM AND GET THAT LIABILITY OFF THEIR BALANCE SHT.EE >> AND EVEN THOUGH TRAVEL IS STARTING TO PICK BACK UP, TRAVEL AGENTS SAY IIST STILL A GOOD IDEA TO BUY THAT TRAVEL INSURANCE. >> DON’T SKIP T THERAVEL INSURANCE. THE WORLD IS SO VOLATILE. REPORTER: GLICKSON SAYS ESH WON’T SKIP HER TRAVEL INSURANCE. SHE’S STILL GOT ABOUT 100,000 POINTS TO RNBU. AND ALREADY HAS HER SIGHTS SET ON THE WEST AST.CO >> WE USE THAT ON THE TICKETS TO LOS ANGELES IN SEPTEMB.ER >> MARK KELLY, WPBF 25 NEWS FELICIA: THE CREDIT CARD EXPERT SAYS IT IS BEST TO HAVE AN EARN AND BURN MINDSET. FIRST, DECIDE WHERE YOU WANT TO GO. THEN FIGURE OUT WHICH AIRLINE FLIES THERE EARN THOSE MILES REDEEM AND THAT WILL ENSURE

Expert tips: Using those credit card points for travel rewards

Many credit card users racked up a lot of travel points during this pandemic. And now that COVID-19 restrictions are easing, travelers tell us that they are itching to burn up those points.”I’m free again. I can travel,” said Luba Glickson, who can not wait to travel now that restrictions are lifting. “It had always been on my bucket list to go to the Biltmore to see the estate.”Take A Look: Impromptu wedding takes flight on Southwest plane after ordained minister offers services on the spotInstead of driving, Glickson and her husband decided to fly to North Carolina, and they upgraded their airline seats, too. After all, they had accumulated about 150,000 points during two pandemic years.”It’s a lot. It’s a lot!” Glickson said. “Online shopping, Amazon, getting some furnishings for the house — We accumulated quite a bit of points.”Annie Davis, president of Palm Beach Travel, said she’s not shocked by the large amount of travel points her clients have accumulated these past two years. “People are buying houses, spending astronomical amounts on decorating. They put everything on their credit cards. We’re not surprised at all. And they want to burn those points as quickly as possible, because people have been stuck at home,” Davis said. Davis has been advising her clients to burn their points. Fifty thousand points could save you about $500 off an airline ticket, but she says you must act fast.”Prices are rising, jet fuel is rising, the price of labor is rising, the cost of food is rising, inflation is rising — and this is continuing on. So my advice to you, and your viewers, is to book your travel now,” said Davis.Good To Know: Your rights if an airline cancels your flight”It’s becoming a little bit harder to be able to redeem basically for exceptional value,” said Lee Huffman, a credit card expert and the host of the “We Travel There” podcast.Huffman explains that the longer you sit on your pile of points, the less value they will have.”Airlines and hotels have to actually keep those points on their balance sheet as far as a liability for them,” said Huffman. “And whenever those numbers get too big, they devalue them to basically encourage people to redeem them, and get that liability off their balance sheet.”And even though travel is starting to pick back up, travel agents say it is still a good idea to buy that travel insurance.”Don’t skip the travel insurance. The world is so volatile,” said Davis.Rossen Reports: 3 tips to rebook your canceled flight fasterGlickson said she won’t skip her travel insurance. She’s still got about 100,000 points to burn, and already has her sights set on the west coast.”We use that on the tickets to Los Angeles in September,” said Glickson.Huffman said it’s best to have an “earn and burn” mindset. First, decide where you want to go. Then, figure out which airline flies there, earn those miles, redeem them, and that will ensure you get a good deal.

Many credit card users racked up a lot of travel points during this pandemic. And now that COVID-19 restrictions are easing, travelers tell us that they are itching to burn up those points.

“I’m free again. I can travel,” said Luba Glickson, who can not wait to travel now that restrictions are lifting. “It had always been on my bucket list to go to the Biltmore to see the estate.”

Take A Look: Impromptu wedding takes flight on Southwest plane after ordained minister offers services on the spot

Instead of driving, Glickson and her husband decided to fly to North Carolina, and they upgraded their airline seats, too. After all, they had accumulated about 150,000 points during two pandemic years.

“It’s a lot. It’s a lot!” Glickson said. “Online shopping, Amazon, getting some furnishings for the house — We accumulated quite a bit of points.”

Annie Davis, president of Palm Beach Travel, said she’s not shocked by the large amount of travel points her clients have accumulated these past two years.

“People are buying houses, spending astronomical amounts on decorating. They put everything on their credit cards. We’re not surprised at all. And they want to burn those points as quickly as possible, because people have been stuck at home,” Davis said.

Davis has been advising her clients to burn their points. Fifty thousand points could save you about $500 off an airline ticket, but she says you must act fast.

“Prices are rising, jet fuel is rising, the price of labor is rising, the cost of food is rising, inflation is rising — and this is continuing on. So my advice to you, and your viewers, is to book your travel now,” said Davis.

Good To Know: Your rights if an airline cancels your flight

“It’s becoming a little bit harder to be able to redeem basically for exceptional value,” said Lee Huffman, a credit card expert and the host of the “We Travel There” podcast.

Huffman explains that the longer you sit on your pile of points, the less value they will have.

“Airlines and hotels have to actually keep those points on their balance sheet as far as a liability for them,” said Huffman. “And whenever those numbers get too big, they devalue them to basically encourage people to redeem them, and get that liability off their balance sheet.”

And even though travel is starting to pick back up, travel agents say it is still a good idea to buy that travel insurance.

“Don’t skip the travel insurance. The world is so volatile,” said Davis.

Rossen Reports: 3 tips to rebook your canceled flight faster

Glickson said she won’t skip her travel insurance. She’s still got about 100,000 points to burn, and already has her sights set on the west coast.

“We use that on the tickets to Los Angeles in September,” said Glickson.

Huffman said it’s best to have an “earn and burn” mindset. First, decide where you want to go. Then, figure out which airline flies there, earn those miles, redeem them, and that will ensure you get a good deal.



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Picking a strategy for your small business credit cards — The Points Guy






Picking a strategy for your small business credit cards — The Points Guy



















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Editorial Note: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.



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Each Saturday, we round up the top miles, points and travel news that you might have missed on TPG U.K. this week





Each Saturday, we round up the top miles, points and travel news that you might have missed on TPG U.K. this week




















Advertiser Disclosure



Many of the offers that appear on this site are from companies from which The Points Guy UK receives compensation. This compensation helps pay the costs associated with running our website, and does not result in any additional fees to you. This site does not include all credit card companies or all available credit card offers. Please view our advertising policy page for more information.

Editorial Note: The Points Guy UK is independent; the opinions published here are always those of the reviewer, who has final editorial approval. The information, including card rates, product pricing and fees, presented in the review is accurate as of the date of the review – please check product pages for the most current information.



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Travel tips to help you plan a fun, affordable vacation this summer – The Points Guy


  1. Travel tips to help you plan a fun, affordable vacation this summer  The Points Guy
  2. Save Money on Summer Travel Despite Rising Gas Prices and Flight Fares With These Expert Tips  Travel + Leisure
  3. Tips to make traveling this summer a breeze  liherald.com
  4. Don’t Let Expensive Flights Stop You: 6 Money-Saving Tips to Offset Travel Costs  CNET
  5. View Full Coverage on Google News



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Each Saturday, we round up the top miles, points and travel news that you might have missed on TPG U.K. this week. Here’s what you need to know:





Each Saturday, we round up the top miles, points and travel news that you might have missed on TPG U.K. this week. Here’s what you need to know:




















Advertiser Disclosure



Many of the offers that appear on this site are from companies from which The Points Guy UK receives compensation. This compensation helps pay the costs associated with running our website, and does not result in any additional fees to you. This site does not include all credit card companies or all available credit card offers. Please view our advertising policy page for more information.

Editorial Note: The Points Guy UK is independent; the opinions published here are always those of the reviewer, who has final editorial approval. The information, including card rates, product pricing and fees, presented in the review is accurate as of the date of the review – please check product pages for the most current information.



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76ers’ Joel Embiid Scores 34 Points, Nuggets’ Nikola Jokic Prevails – NBC10 Philadelphia


3 observations after Embiid (34 points), Sixers lose to Jokic’s Nuggets originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

Monday night’s duel between two MVP contenders lived up the hype, but it didn’t pan out as the Sixers envisioned.

Joel Embiid’s Sixers fell to a 114-110 loss to Nikola Jokic’s Nuggets at Wells Fargo Center. 

Embiid had 34 points and nine rebounds, while Jokic posted 22 points, 13 rebounds and eight assists.

James Harden notched 24 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds. Matisse Thybulle tied his career high with six steals.

The Sixers will play the Cavs on Wednesday night in Cleveland. Here are observations on their loss to Denver:

Long-awaited matchup an entertaining one 

Unsurprisingly, Embiid was attacked-minded from the opening tip in his first game against Jokic since December of 2019. 

On the Sixers’ second possession, he beat Jokic with a pump fake followed by a driving dunk. The next time down, he made a three-pointer off of a pick-and-pop with Tyrese Maxey. Embiid sunk two threes before the Nuggets had any. While Denver began 0 for 8 from long range, an Embiid jumper put the Sixers ahead 27-14, fired up the home fans, and inspired Harden to give the big man a firm, celebratory shove.

No NBA game is ever a true one-on-one duel, and that reality had a major impact Monday. Embiid played a bit less than usual in the first half because of foul trouble and DeAndre Jordan’s minutes against Jokic were seriously unsteady. Jordan did block Jokic in the second quarter, but he allowed the four-time All-Star to hit a wide-open three on the Nuggets’ next possession. Jordan (three points on 1-for-6 shooting, six rebounds) also failed to convert several relatively routine short-range shots. 

With Embiid on the bench, Denver cut a deficit as high as 19 points down to five at halftime. The standout play from the Nuggets’ run was a nifty, in-stride pass from Jokic to Jeff Green for a dunk. 

Denver kept rolling to start the second half, tying the game at 61-all on a Jokic layup and taking the lead on another Green slam. Embiid got good looks on the short roll, but he missed three mid-range jumpers and it was valid to wonder whether the Sixers were worn out from Sunday night’s overtime win in Orlando. But, to Embiid and the Sixers’ credit, they didn’t panic or deviate from what was producing high-quality shots. Embiid made three key jumpers and the Sixers held an eight-point lead when he rested late in the third period. 

A blatant missed travel by Jokic cost them two points, but the Sixers managed without Embiid thanks to productive isolation play from Harden and led by seven points entering the fourth. The Sixers couldn’t capitalize on Jokic’s rest, though. Cousins sunk two threes, knotting the score at 92 apiece, and Denver went up 94-92 on a Bryn Forbes layup. 

Both Jokic and Embiid converted absurd, off-balance shots down the stretch. Jokic gave the Nuggets a 112-108 edge with an unbelievable flip at the hoop that somehow dropped.

Thybulle the ultimate X-factor 

Matisse Thybulle made quite a few positive offensive plays in the early going, a significant development given the Sixers’ continued efforts to force defenses to respect his presence, the team’s recent run of poor starts, and the fact that the 25-year-old played little down the stretch of Sunday night’s overtime win in Orlando.

In addition to slamming home two dunks, Thybulle tapped out an offensive rebound, assisted a transition Tobias Harris three-pointer, and drained a corner three of his own. He finished the first quarter with nine points on 4-for-4 shooting, four steals, two assists, two rebounds and a block.

While much of his success was instinctive, not a byproduct of structured actions, any flickers of Thybulle and the Sixers figuring things out offensively matters in the big picture. If he helps in the playoffs with the occasional put-back layup, fast-break dunk and catch-and-shoot three, that’s great for the Sixers. He doesn’t need to be brilliant offensively to justify a starting spot and heavy minutes.

Thybulle blocked Jokic in the second quarter when he recognized Shake Milton’s predicament on a switch and freelanced for one of his regular defensive highlights. But on Denver’s next possession, he committed a momentum-halting foul on Bones Hyland behind the arc. In third quarter, Thybulle notched his fifth steal with a hard-charging, sneaky double team on an unsuspecting Jokic. 

Picking “X-factors” is a popular exercise ahead of the postseason. We think it’s safe to lock in Thybulle as an important one for the Sixers.

Bones and the bench decide game 

For the most part, Harden made sound decisions against Denver’s aggressive pick-and-roll defense. He found Embiid in promising areas on the short roll and took what the Nuggets gave him.

It sure seems the Sixers will need Harden to be great in the postseason when Embiid sits. He stepped up late in the third quarter as the 32-year-old blocked a Hyland three, drained a step-back jumper and drew frequent fouls. 

Tyrese Maxey didn’t look like a third star, but he was better than in the Sixers’ past two games at decisively picking his spots. Among his best plays were a strong baseline drive and dunk and a pull-up jumper to tie the game at 103-all. Maxey’s demonstrated again and again that he’s a fast learner, and he’s figuring out works for him next to another star. 

Hyland outshined the Sixers’ backcourt during a game-turning stretch in the fourth quarter, though. The Wilmington, Delaware native made three triples that lifted the Nuggets to a 103-97 lead and soaked in every second of the big-game experience. 

Hyland scored 21 of the Nuggets’ 48 bench points, while the Sixers’ second unit shot a collective 4 for 24 and totaled 14 points. 

Danny Green was back Monday after missing two games with a left middle finger laceration. Isaiah Joe did not appear in the Sixers’ nine-player rotation.



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James scores 56 points, Lakers beat Warriors to end skid


LOS ANGELES (AP) — Despite ranking third in NBA history in scoring and closing fast on Karl Malone in second, LeBron James has somehow never been thought of as a pure scorer.

On Saturday night, James showed he is still more than capable of piling up the points in a variety of ways.

James scored a season-high 56 points and the Los Angeles Lakers beat the Golden State Warriors 124-116 to snap a four-game losing streak. It was his third-most points in a regular-season game and 13th time he has had at least 50.

“I felt pretty good with my game tonight, every part of the floor, and I was able to make a couple plays to help us win,” said James, who had a career-best 61 for Miami against Charlotte in 2014.

While James downplayed his 19-of-31 shooting, including 6 of 11 from 3-point range with three consecutive to put the Lakers up 100-97 in the fourth quarter, friends and foes were more than willing to praise his performance.

“He was phenomenal tonight,” said Lakers forward Carmelo Anthony, who had 14 points. “The way that it came, in the rhythm of the game and the flow of the game, us making that comeback and him being a big reason for us coming back and making that run that he did. He just put us on his back tonight.”

“He’s obviously such a handful coming downhill, and then when he gets his 3-point shot going like he did in the second half, makes it pretty difficult to try and guard him,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “He was brilliant tonight. LeBron was amazing.”

Anthony completed a three-point play to give the Lakers a 114-112 lead with 3:29 to play, and Malik Monk hit a 3 to extend that lead to five after Austin Reeves stole Curry’s pass. James then threw down a thunderous alley-oop from Monk, who stole the inbound pass after a Los Angeles turnover.

Stephen Curry cut it to 119-116 with 1:06 left, but Reeves grabbed the offensive rebound and Anthony hit a corner 3, allowing the Lakers to see it out.

Curry had 30 for Golden State, and Jordan Poole added 23. The Warriors have lost four straight to drop to third overall in the NBA, a half-game behind Memphis and 8 1/2 games behind Phoenix.

“There’s more games coming, so we’ve got to do this ourselves. We got to dig out of the mud, and nobody’s going to help us,” Kerr said.

Golden State ran over Los Angeles with 42 points in the second quarter to take a 67-62 halftime lead. Poole and Jonathan Kuminga each had eight points, Curry added seven, and the Warriors made 69.6% of their shots from the field (16 of 23) and 75% from 3-point range (6 of 8). But they let the Lakers close the half on a 11-2 run, and Kerr lamented the inability to maintain separation.

“This has been a pattern during this bad spell for us,” Kerr said. “We’re not stepping on teams when they are down. We’re making mistakes and allowing teams to hang around, and when you do that in this league you’re dead.”

EQUAL SHOWING

James had 26 points in each half. It was his 24th straight game with at least 25 points to extend the longest streak of James’ illustrious career.

“When he has it going like that, there’s really nobody on their team that can do anything about it,” said Lakers guard Russell Westbrook, who scored 20. “Tonight, he forced his will and had his hands on the game at all levels. It was really big, especially tonight in games like this where we needed to win.”

WORK TO DO

Klay Thompson labored for the second straight game following his return from a non-COVID-19 illness, scoring seven points on 3-of-13 shooting in 31 minutes.

“Klay’s pressing,” Kerr said. “I feel like the sickness probably affected his conditioning and his timing, so he’s struggled the last two games. And he’ll get it back.”

STAY BACK

Kerr said Curry, Thompson and Andrew Wiggins would be among several Golden State players that will not travel to play at Denver on Monday.

TIP-INS

Kuminga finished with 18 points. … Lakers G Avery Bradley returned after missing five games because of a right knee injury. He did not score in 16 minutes … Lakers G Talen Horton Tucker had two points in 18 minutes after not playing against the Clippers on Thursday because of a sprained left ankle. … Super Bowl-winning QB Matthew Stafford of the Los Angeles Rams watched the game from courtside seats with his wife, while longtime Lakers coach Phil Jackson took it in from a suite.

UP NEXT

Warriors: At Denver on Monday night.

Lakers: At San Antonio on Monday night.

___

More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/nba and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports





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A Guide to the Highest Points in Minnesota and the Surrounding States


Black Elk Peak in South Dakota
Black Elk Peak in South Dakota

Travel South Dakota/Chad Coppess

There are groups for just about any interest and activity these days—but I still get some strange looks when I say I’m a member of the Highpointers Club. It’s a simple concept: Members try to climb the highest natural elevation point in each state. They also share their tips and successes in online forums and in a newsletter appropriately called Apex to Zenith. Those who have summited all 50 states are celebrated as “Completers.”

What started out as a family weekend road trip to our first state highpoint nearly a decade ago has turned into an ongoing adventure as we zigzag through the U.S. on various travels, making detours to visit highpoints. While I’ve only completed five states so far and my daughter only three, my husband and son have summited 11. They plan to hit more soon, too, with a trip to the Appalachian Mountains where a number of states’ highpoints are clustered.

Some sites are simple to summit—just drive up, park the car, and look for a sign or geological marker to prove you were there. Other highpoints require advanced hiking skills, special gear, and months of planning for permits or permission. Some are on state-owned land or national parks, while others are on privately owned properties only open to the public a few times a year. Many include a log or journal tucked away from the elements where visitors can write their names and where they have traveled from as well as words of encouragement. Some people bring small trinkets or donations. My son has started leaving a pebble or small rock at the summit to make it an even taller highpoint.

If you’re looking for a getaway with great views or a challenging hike to put on your bucket list, these six Midwest highpoints may make you want to join the club. While I’ve only completed four of the six, my husband and son have completed them all. I have listed them here in order of ease.

Hawkeye Point in Iowa
Hawkeye Point in Iowa

Iowa Tourism

Iowa

We were looking for a family adventure years ago when we decided to jump in the car on a snowy weekend for this three-and-a-half-hour drive from the Twin Cities. We weren’t sure what to expect of this new adventure of highpointing, and, to be honest, driving up to this site in the middle of a corn field is very anticlimactic. Hawkeye Point, along the Minnesota/Iowa border, is called a point instead of a mountain or peak for a reason: It’s technically the highest elevation in a very, very flat state. At 1,670 feet above sea level, Hawkeye Point ranks 42nd in U.S. highpoints, but is still higher than Florida and Ohio (which we also have visited).

Highpointers should thank the Sterler family for donating this land to the county in 2006 with the stipulation that the area be turned into a park. Before that, highpointers would ask the family individually for permission to visit the site. When we arrived, we were the only visitors and spent about 30 minutes checking out the informational markers highlighting the Sterlers, the various license plates from all U.S. states, and the signs pointing to other highpoints around the country with their distances from Hawkeye Point. 

In hindsight, I’m glad we started with this easy landmark that was a fun, educational journey but not too strenuous or taxing for the kids. It sparked their interest to continue visiting other highpoints, which was the main point. While there’s not a big sense of accomplishment summiting a mountain, as with some of the other sites, it can make a decent day trip with stops along the way, such as Minnesota’s Worthington or Sioux Falls, S.D., about an hour away.

Charles Mound in Illinois
Charles Mound in Illinois

Illinois Office of Toursim

Illinois

I feel fortunate that we’ve been able to cross this state’s highpoint off our list because it’s only open a few times each year. Charles Mound is located on private property, but the owners allow visitors the first weekend of June, July, August, and September. (According to Summitpost.org, the owners have added a winter date over Presidents’ Day weekend in February, but the gated road remains unplowed.)  

We wanted to make sure to follow the property owners’ strict rules of no pets and no climbing after dusk, so paired our visit with a stay at my parents’ house in La Crosse, Wis., over a Fourth of July weekend several years ago. From the Twin Cities, this highpoint is a five-hour drive; from La Crosse, we could make it in three, so set out early for a day of climbing and an evening return. The nearest large town is Galena, 30 minutes away, if
you want to stay there or plan to eat nearby.

This highpoint is only a quarter-mile from the Wisconsin border in the Driftless Area. At 1,235 feet above sea level, it’s technically lower than Iowa’s highpoint (and technically lower than the tip of Chicago’s Willis Tower by about 500 feet, but that’s not a natural highpoint). I’m listing it after Iowa, however, because this site requires you to park along the road and walk about a mile along a dirt path and through a field to reach. Finding the exact point is the toughest part of the visit, too, because there are no signs along the road. Because of its limited access, however, there are usually several other cars parked nearby to tip you off.

The site has a nice marker where you can take your selfies and a gorgeous lookout point. We found a log of previous visitors and enjoyed reading how far some people travel for this kind of adventure. It was quite hot that July afternoon when we visited, as well, making the hike a good workout for all of us.

Timms Hill View
Timms Hill View

Travel Wisconsin

Wisconsin

Timms Hill in north-central Wisconsin is our neighboring state’s highpoint and is 1,951 feet above sea level. It is a three-hour drive from the Twin Cities, with the cities of Tomahawk about 30 minutes to the west and larger Wausau about an hour to the south. The site is confusingly also called Timm’s Hill, like nobody wants to make the official call on using punctuation. 

My husband has his private pilot’s license, so our visit to this highpoint was a unique experience about seven years ago. We flew as a family in a Cessna 172 from the Anoka airport, where he has a membership in an airplane-sharing club, to the Prentice, Wis., municipal airport for the day. Most small airports have a courtesy car on hand for people like us who just want to explore the area for the day and leave their planes near the hangar. But the Prentice airport didn’t have one on hand when we called the airport manager, Dale Heikkinen. Aviators are a friendly bunch, and Heikkinen offered to meet us the next day at the airport to drive us the 12 miles to Timms Hill County Park and act as our tour guide for the day. His knowledge of the area and enthusiasm charmed us all. 

From the parking lot of Timms Hill County Park, we walked a paved path a short distance to the lookout tower that is the official highpoint. The view that summer afternoon was clear and pristine; we could see Rib Mountain to the south and other Wisconsin landmarks. Timms Hill Trail is connected to the Ice Age Trail, which stretches 1,200 miles across Wisconsin and can easily be included as a stop for hikers working on completing that milestone. At the end of our hour-long round-trip hike to the top of the tower, we returned to the airport to fly home and marvel at the highpoint from a different vantage point: the sky.

White Butte in North Dakota
White Butte in North Dakota

State of North Dakota

North Dakota

White Butte is North Dakota’s highest point and a strenuous climb to the top at 3,506 feet above sea level. My husband, son, and I completed this summit a few years ago as we drove out to Bozeman, Mont., for a tour of Montana State University. The climb—and the visit—were both successful, and my son now attends college there. 

From the Twin Cities, it’s an eight-and-a-half-hour drive to a desolate location in the Badlands within the boundaries of the Little Missouri National Grassland. Theodore Roosevelt National Park is 30 minutes to the north if you’re looking to camp or combine this trip with a visit to some national parks. The name comes from the white hue of the bentonite in the rock and soil, even though it looks like it’s snow from a distance.

We arrived at the parking lot at about 2 p.m. on an unseasonably hot May afternoon, dusty from the drive and glad we had stocked up on water and snacks. I wore a lot of sunscreen and a sunhat but wished I had a walking stick as well.

From the parking lot, it’s a mile walk to the trailhead past the cows in the fenced pasture that seemed amused by our visit. We saw several cars in the parking lot, but only six other hikers during the four-mile round-trip hike to the top that took me about two hours to complete. 

The trailhead is flat at the beginning but gets challenging quickly. By taking my time and several breaks, I finally did make it to the top and marveled at the magnificent views. I spent about 20 minutes exploring the area, and when we got back to the car, I was covered in sweat and dust but satisfied I had completed the challenge.

South Dakota

I’ve had the chance to climb South Dakota’s highpoint, Black Elk Peak (previously called Harney Peak), in the Black Hills National Forest a few times but haven’t completed it yet. The first time I visited this area about 10 hours from the Twin Cities, I was solo and decided I wanted to climb it with my family. Silly me, because the second time I had the chance, we were returning from our Montana visit but arrived at the site late in the day. I wasn’t sure if I would make the challenging round trip in under two hours. I started the climb but my husband and son went ahead without me and reached the peak as the sun was setting. That made for some amazing views—they claimed they could see seven different states from the lookout turret at the top—but they did have to return in the dark by flashlight and pass several others on the trail. 

At 7,242 feet above sea level, it’s the 15th highest U.S. highpoint and listed by the Board on Geographical Names as the highest summit in the U.S. east of the Rocky Mountains. I love this area of South Dakota and could easily spend several days exploring nearby Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse Memorial, and Rapid City. As they hiked, I walked around the beautiful Sylvan Lake Lodge grounds and took photos at the Needles Highway Scenic Overlook. Maybe a third visit will bring me luck and I will be able to cross this highpoint off my list, too.

Eagle Mountain in Minnesota
Eagle Mountain in Minnesota

Justin Meissen

Minnesota

Finally, our own state’s highest point is last on this list. That’s because it, too, is one of the more difficult summits—and one I have yet to make. At 2,301 feet above sea level, climbing Eagle Mountain is a workout! It’s a three-and-a-half-mile hike up that takes about five hours to complete round trip, so plan for a full day of activity. About a four-and-a-half-hour drive from the Twin Cities, the closest town to the Eagle Mountain trailhead is Grand Marais, about 30 minutes away. 

Much of the trail is within the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, so it is maintained as a wilderness trail, without stairs and with overgrowth. It also requires a day permit to hike.

My husband and son completed this hike in the summer of 2017 with our dog and said it was one of the most challenging hikes of their highpoints so far. It was also mosquito-central, but offered incredible views at the top, including the shoreline of Lake Superior. For this trip, they camped at Tettegouche State Park, setting out on the trail in early morning to beat the heat—but not the bugs. If I were to try this one, I would like to train for it and give myself enough time to enjoy the journey and possibly combine it with a portion of the 310-mile Superior Hiking Trail. If I’m able, it may become the highlight of my highpoints.





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How I saved thousands of dollars on travel by buying 310,000 points






How I saved thousands of dollars on travel by buying 310,000 points





















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