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Old 08-25-2013, 08:00 PM
Location: Southwest Washington State
22,177 posts, read 14,572,077 times
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Originally Posted by 2nd trick op View Post

I-80 across Nebraska and Wyoming has a number of medium-sized communities dependent largely upon the Interstate (North Platte lives off the Union Pacific (Railroad)). Northern Nevada and Western Utah are a bit less settled, but you're seldom out of sight of a cell-phone tower, or an 18-wheel truck.
This was not our experience regarding cell phone service. We have Sprint. We had no cell service in WY, but could text. I believe our phone service picked up in Utah, but I don't remember where. This was in late June, 2012.
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Old 08-25-2013, 08:02 PM
Location: Southwest Washington State
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Originally Posted by kygman View Post
Just googled your route and, on this part of the country, it's the route I thought it would be. Once you kit Kansas City, you'll have I-64 all the way to Beckley. That will take you through St. Louis, Evansville, In., Louisville and Lexington, Ky. Somebody mentioned getting paper maps. Only map we usually get is to print off the route we google. But if you do want one, the best place is the welcome centers in each state. Good place to stretch yours and the pets' legs, give them some water to drink and get a little info. Many places you'll stop will have a big box of those coupon books for hotels along the interstate. Most of the time the hotels know nothing of those coupons and won't honor them but the books are good for telling you the pet friendly hotels/motels.
If you need it, get a hot spot on your cell phone so, if you need it or just want it to check emails, you can get online with your laptop if you have phone service. And most truck stops and a lot of welcome centers have wifi.
Once you get settled and get a free weekend, you'll only be about 300 miles (still on I-64) from Washington, D.C. and about 265 miles from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee. You could spend a week in both places and not see everything. Have a fun, and safe, trip.
From KC, the route to StL is I 70, not I 64.
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Old 08-25-2013, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by silibran View Post
From KC, the route to StL is I 70, not I 64.
Silibran is correct, however, if you want to take I-64 it branches off from I-70 just west of St. Louis at Wentzville.

Speaking of weather, it's going to be brutally hot in the midwest this week, the hottest week of the summer - mid to upper 90 degrees. It's not supposed to rain all week at least in eastern MO or in Kansas City. You'll not be able to leave your pets in your car for very long at all, maybe 5-10 minutes MAX. Have your windows rolled down as much as possible without your dog being able to get out and keep the kitty in a carrier when you stop. Get 3-4 gallons of water to have on hand in case you do break down in the middle of nowhere.

This might be TMI but we had one of these when the previous house we owned didn't have a toilet in the basement and we had to stay down there because of tornadic activity in the area:
Luggable Loo Seat and Cover | Bass Pro Shops

And, as others have posted, get your car as in shape as much you can possibly afford. Make sure your air conditioning is in good shape. Change the cabin and air filters for maximum airflow. You and your pets will appreciate it.
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Old 08-26-2013, 12:45 AM
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I have not driven with pets but have done long distances by myself. In my opinion you need to stop and stay at a hotel to let your body get a break. Also for your pets too as it is not fair in my opinion to keep them confined for so long.
I really encourage you to get a GPS. They have come down a lot in price. Often there are road closures or detours and it is so nice to just be redirected by GPS. Also a cell phone charger for the car. It is good you have AAA.
Before you leave I would take your car to a reliable place and get oil changed, fluids checked, tires rotated. I am thinking since you are way over your miles in terms of car care you will have some issue going on that needs care so it may cost you more then the average oil and tire rotation.
It is always hard to judge time it will take between construction, accidents, and weather that may delay you. It is better to allow more time as I hate feeling rushed.
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Old 08-26-2013, 07:45 AM
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Good luck adjusting to WV, worst state to live in by far! I should know I grew up there and getting out soon! If you need WV info let me know. About the only two roads you will travel on in WV to get to beckley is I64 and I77S. Want some good advice, don't give up CA for no job, WV isn't worth it!

Other advice, get some work done on your car, esp if traveling alone. Make sure your car is in good shape and ready to go. I wouldn't trust a car with that many miles and little work done. I'd probably hire someone to move me and take the car with them then rent me a decent car to travel with it fly most of the way.
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Old 08-27-2013, 12:30 PM
Location: Sacramento CA
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Man, it sounds like we're in about the same boat! I'm gonna be moving with just the stuff in my car and pets (two cats who reeeeally hate the car) from Louisville KY to Sacramento in a few weeks. I like going through cities more than backroads I don't know so I'm taking the northern route (Louisville-St.Louis-KansasCity-Lincoln-Cheyenne-SaltLake-Reno-Sacramento) which will be about 32 hours-ish if I make good time.

I used this site to plan gas stations along the way. Trip Cost Calculator - Maximize Your Fuel Savings - GasBuddy.com And I plan to keep water in the back just in case. For your kitten, I suggest putting him/her in a harness instead of a collar because they can't get out of them as easily. And don't be tempted to take him/her out of the carrier! It always seems like a good idea until they get wedged under the brake petal and you don't have another human to get them to move. If you want more specific pet info, I'd check the Dogs and Cats sections because they usually have some pet-travel advice that's more specific.

As already mentioned, definitely get that Jetta looked over really well. I have a Versa that's no so great so I've been trying to collect info on what to have fixed before we leave. If you tell the car-repair people that you're going to have extra weight in your car for extended time, they'll be better able to evaluate the tires and such.

And don't be too freaked out about WV. Obviously I live in the neighboring state and I've been there a few times. Sure it's poor but hey stuff's cheap! And the people have always been nice when I've visited. I'm sure you'll get along great! Thanks for posting such good questions too.

Another good thread with driving info: Driving alone from California to Texas

Last edited by matryoshka4811; 08-27-2013 at 12:31 PM.. Reason: new info
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Old 09-01-2013, 10:03 AM
Location: The Northeast - hoping one day the Northwest!
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Originally Posted by yoshimi! View Post
So, my situation is basically- I am moving from Sacramento, CA to Beckley, WV. My job starts on the 9th of September, though I would like to be there 3 or so days before that--the night of the 5th/morning of the 6th maybe. I'm driving my car there (a Jetta, so smallish). I am taking my 50lb dog, my kitten, and whatever fits in the trunk. I am not sure of basically anything at the moment.
If you do end up getting a hotel (which might be good for the dog & the kitten) I recommend LaQuinta. We have 1 dog and 2 cats and whenever we go someplace - we always look for a LaQuinta. No pet fees and a nice hotel chain. Good luck w/ your move!
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