Results 1 to 9 of 9

Thread: Longest Road Trips?

  1. #1

    Longest Road Trips?

    I'm guessing there's at least a few long haul road warriors out on this site, so figured I'd see what qualifies as your longest or most interesting road trip.

    My personal record - July of 2005, when I covered a little over 8,100 miles, touching 21 states (every state west of the Mississippi except for Minnesota) in 18 days on a trip from Dallas to Mt. Rainier National Park and back. I also made a conscious effort to stick to the back roads instead of the interstates, which really didn't take much extra time given the wide open spaces (and higher speed limits) out west.

  2. #2
    gail
    Guest

    Re: Longest Road Trips?

    Quote Originally Posted by MeanMeosh
    I'm guessing there's at least a few long haul road warriors out on this site, so figured I'd see what qualifies as your longest or most interesting road trip.

    My personal record - July of 2005, when I covered a little over 8,100 miles, touching 21 states (every state west of the Mississippi except for Minnesota) in 18 days on a trip from Dallas to Mt. Rainier National Park and back. I also made a conscious effort to stick to the back roads instead of the interstates, which really didn't take much extra time given the wide open spaces (and higher speed limits) out west.
    Since I'm a traveling woman - I have many road trip stories to tale. I've just grabbed one here and I'll send others, not in any particular order. Each as a beginning and end.
    Some of them I'm the driver, and some I'm a passenger, all are educational. 8)

    Road Stories: I could tell so many, but I will settle on the one that happened in the desert the summer of 1986.

    I was driving from Salt Lake City, Utah to Escondido, California. I was driving a '74 Toyota Celica. Traveling with me were my two teenage sons and a neighbor's teenage daughter. I left Las Vegas about 4 a.m., so I could drive across the desert before the heat of the day.

    We were surrounded in a deep darkness, not one glow of a light anywhere. It was the kind of darkness that swallows any light, including the headlights of our car. There was an eerie feeling that at the end of my headlights I would drop off into a big hole in the road. Suddenly, we no longer had headlights, and the car was slowing down. No amount of pressure on the accelerator or shifting of gears made any difference. We coasted to a stop onto the shoulder. A 18-wheeler passed by, the wind currents being generated by its size and velocity rocked our little sports car almost to the point of turning us over. Then he disappeared, and the deep darkness returned. I recognized the danger we were in.

    I put the car gear into neutral and instructed these kids to start pushing the car towards a nearby off-ramp. By this time dawn was lightening up the eastern horizon. I could see a gas station on the other side of the Interstate, so we kept pushing the car up and over the overpass into the station?s parking space.

    We discovered when we arrived that the station had permanently closed. It had been abandoned! As if this wasn't enough to add to our situation, we then saw a poster in the window seeking the whereabouts and offering a reward for the person who shot and killed a trucker as he slept in his sleeper in this very spot. Cold shivers ran down my back!

    These were the days before cell phones, and we didn't own a CB, however we noticed that the pay phone had not been removed yet. As luck would have it, the phone had not been disconnected yet either. So, we got together enough change to make a phone call. I called the operator and asked for help. She wanted to know where I was, and I said that I didn't know, "West of Las Vegas," I told her. "Are you in Nevada or California?" I said in near hysteria, "Don't you know where I am?" She replied, "No, we don't have locations of pay phones." I groaned, and asked her where she was, and she told me that she was in Anaheim, California. How could this be happening to me? As the sun rose so did the temperature, the desert?s and mine. The teenagers? Well, to them this was a Field Trip and they were horsing around without a clue about the potential of the danger we were in.

    The operator droned on, "I have to know what state you are in order to contact the police." In frustration, "Connect me with the California Highway Patrol." And, she did.

    As soon as I explained our situation to the Patrol officer, he told me that there were numbers painted on the underbelly of the overpass, for me to go read those and tell him. I did this and he told me that I was indeed in California. He connected me with a mechanic in Baker, California. They sent out a tow truck, 112 miles. My AAA only covered a limited amount, so this trip cost us an arm and a leg.

    It was about noon when they arrived to get us and then the long trip to Baker. No air conditioning and the thermometer was reading well over 100 degrees. Whew!

    We spent the night in this small desert town. In the morning the mechanic told me that my problem was the alternator, and they didn't have one, but they would be glad to tow us to Barstow. This was another hundred miles, and another arm and a leg. I thought I should give up my last born for payment, but he could see right off that wasn?t going to be a good deal at all. So our horror road story continued. Our two-day trip to California ended up taking 4 days. And, you haven?t traveled until you have a bunch of teenagers in tow. Babies are a breeze in comparison.


  3. #3
    Senior Member Kwozzie1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Sunshine Coast, QLD, Australia
    Posts
    2,072

    Re: Longest Road Trips?

    Quote Originally Posted by gail
    It was about noon when they arrived to get us and then the long trip to Baker. No air conditioning and the thermometer was reading well over 100 degrees. Whew!
    Baker...I remmeber seeing the temperature on 100F on a tower, when I drove through there in '95. I was in an Volvo 740 which had aircon. I took a photo because when living in NZ, we didn't get those temperatures where I lived, although close to it. Sadly all my photos of that drive from LAX to Maryland have been destroyed by fire.

    A noticeable difference to driving across the USA to driving across OZ where I know live is the multilane highhways the US has... The Nullabor was only sealed/tarmaced/bitumened in the '70's. Servos/Roadhouses are about 200-300kms apart.
    Rex
    On the Sunshine Coast, in the Sunshine State Queensland (QLD), Australia

  4. #4
    gail
    Guest

    Re: Longest Road Trips?

    As I said before -- I have lots of road stories, here is another one.

    April 2005

    Our move from Nashville, Tennessee to Las Vegas, Nevada will be an experience I will always remember. LOL Both the traveling and moving into our new place. We left Nashville in a driving rain storm of near hurricane conditions. We found out from the weather report that night that we were only getting the northern tip of the storm. But since neither hubby nor I were not too savvy about driving a 24' truck and hauling our minivan on a trailer, we decided to hang it up about 5 p.m. We didn't even make it to Memphis the first day on the road.

    We drove I-40 from Nashville, TN to Kingman, AZ. We soon realized that all Interstates are not alike. Arkansas roads were bad, with lots of construction, poor signage, and markings. Oklahoma's highways were worse, and New Mexico's was like driving over a washboard. The trip was so hard on us, that I didn't have the strength to handle the truck at all, and hubby's legs and arms hurt for a week after we arrived. This was from trying to keep the truck on the road.

    We almost bought the farm just west of Little Rock, when the split went into one lane without any notice, and an 18-wheeler was beside us, we had nowhere to go. The rig left the pavement, and for a minute I thought it would tip over, but he managed to get control of it. Then over the CB he started asking if other drivers had seen what had happen, so I got on the 'horn' too. He apologized, saying he hadn't seen any markings or signage, and I said we hadn't either. I told him that I had almost wet my pants, and his partner got on the horn and she said that he did too.

    In New Mexico we went through a very, very bad dust storm. We couldn't see 12 ft in front of us. We were pelted with little red rocks, gusts up to 65 mph. We finally stopped in Gallup about 4 p.m. and fought our way into a motel. hubby had to stand behind me to keep me from being blown over, I kept drifting backwards. When we got inside, we both took showers and brushed our teeth. You won't believe this, but two week later I was still blowing red dirt out of my sinuses.

    Oh, and when we started unpacking - - - red dirt, dust and rocks were over and in everything. I have a little dormitory size 'frig and red rocks was INSIDE it.

    The Ironic part of the Dust Storm is that once again we weren't in the worse of the storm. There were signs on the highway -- BIG, bright yellow signs that read - Sudden dust storms possible, zero visibility without warning, or something to that effect. Now that made me feeling conformable. anyway, the trip ended up taking longer than we had planned. Six nights on the road, instead of the planned four. Also, we only got between 4 and 6 mpg. The good news though is that we saved closed to $3,000.00 by doing this ourselves.

    Another wild adventure coming soon - - -

  5. #5
    Senior Member Kwozzie1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Sunshine Coast, QLD, Australia
    Posts
    2,072

    Re: Longest Road Trips?

    [b]Another wild adventure coming soon - - -[/b]

    You have adventures too!
    Still on my '95 trip across the USA in a Volvo.........Registered in Calfiornia ...I was driving courtesy of Auto Driveaway

    Driving I 70 between Vail and Denver I had to cross over a mountain range and then another via the Jefferson Tunnel. Had lots of orange lights coming on the dash. Stopped and checked the engine bay nothing leaking overly hot. Called into a servo and a kiwi was working there ...told me it happens to all Calirnian cars because of the emission gear...said once I got to Denver next morning all lights would be out.

    Was really tired arriving in Denver so stopped at the first motel. This place seemed ok.....from the outside then having paid and opened the room I had serious misgivings.....I notesed a broked windopane with just cardboard in place. Manager gave me another room and when I tried to move car, found the key had broken.. I rang unmet cousins whom I was to visit the following day. They arranged for AAA to come to my aid. I had reciprocal rights with NZ's AA. The guy unlocking the car asked why I was staying at tthis motel. I told him I was tired. He said lets get you going and get out of here, this is a rough part of town...I know as I used to live nearby. The AAA guy said it was known for criminal activity. I had noticed that the Volvo was likely the most modern car there. Once mobile again I thanked the AAA guy and followed my cousin to the Holiday Inn in Aurora. There the staff kept an eye on the car overnight as it was unlockable
    Following day AAA guy came, installed new lock and gave me keys and I went to stay with my cousins for 2 nights.
    I have to say I was glad to be out of the dodgy motel!
    Rex
    On the Sunshine Coast, in the Sunshine State Queensland (QLD), Australia

  6. #6
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    The Land of The Edentulites
    Posts
    22,890

    Re: Longest Road Trips?

    Quote Originally Posted by MeanMeosh
    I'm guessing there's at least a few long haul road warriors out on this site, so figured I'd see what qualifies as your longest or most interesting road trip.

    I've done the cross-country thing three times (twice, virtually non-stop except for pee/coffee breaks and cramped naps by the side of the road. The "trucker speed" you used to be able to get at those all-night choke and pukes by the side of the highway helped a lot, but I was also younger and more determined in thos days!)

  7. #7
    gail
    Guest

    Re: Longest Road Trips?

    On my last day at work for the State of Utah the bureau that I worked for threw a ?Going Away? party. It was March 1, 1989. I was living in Salt Lake City, Utah and I had been working in Water Pollution Control. Hubby had already accepted a job and moved to Knoxville Tennessee, the movers would arrive early Friday morning on the 3rd. I planned to drive across country with my 16-year old son.

    The weather had been beautiful. The weather had been warm and pleasant as often the case just before spring. The radio told of a late winter storm moving into the region. I figured if I could get out ahead of it, I could make tracks before it hit. Ah, but the best laid plans of men and mice -- the movers didn?t show up until noon. As the day went on and the temperatures dropped and the skies turned dark, I started to feel nervous. By 6 p.m. I decided to leave everything in the hands of the movers and we were in the car and took off at 6:20 p.m.

    I took I-80 Weather starting to turn bad, but I kept thinking that I could out run it. My son and I were in a merry mood at the prospect of our adventure, and I kept thinking that I could outrun the storm, but as I headed east the weather seemed to be getting worse - almost as if I was going into the storm. Well, never mind, I thought, I had lived in the high country of Colorado for 15 years and Utah for 5 years, and I was an accomplished winter driver.

    As I was driving a van passed me, there was an overpass and a curve, as I came around the curve the van was on its hood. No cell phones in those days. I stopped and gave some of my supplies: a blanket, and flares. Another vehicle said that they would go for help and another yet said that they would stay with them. So we drove on. It was only about 9 p.m., but the accident unnerved me and I decided that we should find a motel. I felt that morning would be better.

    I can?t remember the name of the motel now, I think it was the Norman Bates Motel, but it was in Echo, Utah. I got the chills and hair stood up on the back of my neck. We went into a postage stamp size room with twin beds. I told my son that this was right out of Psycho, except the register was a blond woman. My son happily told me that in Psycho II there was a woman at the desk - it was Norman in a wig. Oh, geez, he could have talked all night and not tell me this.

    By morning we were all but snowbound. I?m thinking maybe we should have driven on the night before. But we had breakfast, climbed into the Chrysler and took off. As we came I into Wyoming there was a digital sign with snow advisory and requiring chains. I didn?t have chains and didn?t want to put out the money, so I disregarded the warning. We had bumper stickers in Colorado that read ?Chains required, Whips optional?

    Oh merrily, merrily the foolish folly. I stopped again in Wamsutter, Wyoming for gas. It was blizzard conditions, but nowhere to stop. I had seen a RV slide sideways into an 18-wheeler. The highway was glare ice, and you couldn?t see the end of your hood. I was so fatigue at this point from trying to keep my car on the road; my eyes were crossing from starting so intently into the whiteness of the blizzard. I decided to stay for a while at the gas station and nap.

    When I woke up from my nap, I was feeling pretty good. The wind seemed to have settled down somewhat, thus the blizzard wasn?t so harsh either. I wanted to get to Laramie before I quit for the night. I pulled out onto the Interstate and got up to speed - reasonable or so I thought. I felt a slight twinge of the steering wheel, but felt that I had control of the car. Suddenly without warning the car started to fishtail, and then slid sideways, the car started picking up speed in spite of the fact that my foot was NOT on the accelerator, the car whipped around and I was traveling backwards. As I started to leave the highway, I had this surreal sensation of being on a Disneyland ride, namely Peter Pan where as the boat takes off for the skies a voice announced ?Here we go!? and those were my exact words. I braced myself for the worse and told my son to do the same, especially our heads - before air bags and only a lap belt. It was if a hand -- my guardian angel? -- had reached out and stopped the car. We didn?t leave the highway, nor did we hit anything. I was very shaken, when I looked up an 18-wheel driver had blocked all traffic and was motioning me to go on in front of him. I really wanted to just sit there and cry, but I bucked up and took back to the roadway.

    We found a motel in Rawlins. What a relief to get off the road. We went swimming, sat in the hot tub, got dressed and went to dinner - steak and lobster to celebrate life.

    By the time dinner was over we both were in good spirits and went to get a change of clothes out of the trunk of the car for tomorrow. The locks were frozen. We called a lock smith to come do their magic. Then I went out and paid $70.26 for chains. I carried those chains in my vehicle until I sold it in 1992 and never used them.

    The rest of the trip was really enjoyable. We followed the Mormon trail and visit some of the sites along the way. We finally arrived in Knoxville.

  8. #8

    Re: Longest Road Trips?

    Quote Originally Posted by gail


    We spent the night in this small desert town. In the morning the mechanic told me that my problem was the alternator, and they didn't have one, but they would be glad to tow us to Barstow. This was another hundred miles, and another arm and a leg. I thought I should give up my last born for payment, but he could see right off that wasn?t going to be a good deal at all. So our horror road story continued. Our two-day trip to California ended up taking 4 days. And, you haven?t traveled until you have a bunch of teenagers in tow. Babies are a breeze in comparison.

    My family had a similar nightmare roadtrip story, also on the way to California. I was only 6 at the time, so naturally I wasn't driving, but we were on my way from East Texas to Berkeley, California to drop my sister off at college. I guess it's because of all the stuff we had to take for my sister, but we decided to drive her out there, and we did so in our '81 Cadillac Sedan de Ville diesel (or "Crapillac", as we liked to call it, as it was your typical GM diesel P.O.S.). We probably should have guessed something was up based on the loud knocking coming from the engine compartment the day before, but we didn't know well enough to get it a thorough check-up before leaving.

    Well, to make a long story short, about 10 miles west of Gallup, New Mexico on Interstate 40, right around midnight, the engine kicks the bucket. We manage to limp into a motel parking lot somewhere just across the Arizona state line (of course, no room at the inn, since it was 3 a.m., so we had to sleep in the car). Luckily for us, a mechanic saw us crammed in the car the next morning and offered to help; the car got a tow to a Caddy dealer in Gallup, and we rented a car and went on our way (we had to abandon the Caddy in Gallup, though we had to return 3 months later to retrieve it). But, to add insult to injury, the rental car started acting up, too! It ended up developing an overheating problem a little ways outside of San Francisco, so we had to exchange it for yet another one to get back home.

  9. #9
    DonTom
    Guest

    Re: Longest Road Trips?

    Quote Originally Posted by MeanMeosh
    I'm guessing there's at least a few long haul road warriors out on this site, so figured I'd see what qualifies as your longest or most interesting road trip.

    My personal record - July of 2005, when I covered a little over 8,100 miles, touching 21 states (every state west of the Mississippi except for Minnesota) in 18 days on a trip from Dallas to Mt. Rainier National Park and back. I also made a conscious effort to stick to the back roads instead of the interstates, which really didn't take much extra time given the wide open spaces (and higher speed limits) out west.
    My longest one day trip was from the Big Bend of Texas to Salton Sea, CA. On my brand new 1971 BMW R-75/5 motorcycle that I purchased right after I got out of the army. I still own this bike (as well as several others) , runs fine.

    -Don-

Similar Threads

  1. Hi from the road
    By Frosts08ultra in forum On Two Wheels
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 06-17-2010, 11:33 AM
  2. Longest I've owned a car
    By chiph in forum Motor Mouth
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 12-05-2008, 01:09 PM
  3. More off-road fun.
    By Ken in forum On Two Wheels
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 08-23-2008, 07:20 AM
  4. Have you seen all these on the road?
    By TC in forum Motor Mouth
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 05-08-2007, 12:10 PM
  5. Replies: 3
    Last Post: 01-14-2007, 12:40 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •