Road trips aren't only about the final destination, but also (and importantly!) about the journey getting there. Don't rush through your drive, make the most of it and enjoy some stops along the way. Whenever Darren and I plan road trips, we always use satellite view and seek out cool spots that are on (or near) our route.
Before leaving Monument Valley, we did just that and looked for interesting locations along the way to Albuquerque. We found a spot called Bisti Badlands - so we wandered off on a desolate, dirt road and drove along until we found what we saw in those photos. Well, we never did find the location we were looking for (no service!), but the road we were on suddenly became so magically lit by the golden hour sun and we were enjoying every moment of that drive.
Sometimes your journey can take you on some unexpected turns, but you just gotta roll with the punches and live in the moment.