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Old 02-03-2017, 12:56 PM
646 posts, read 781,610 times
Reputation: 249


Originally Posted by Meemur View Post
My boombox takes 6 C batteries. That wasn't a huge expense and they lasted through the move and about a week beyond. I listened to 3 audio books before I had to replace them.
Thanks. I'm leaving tomorrow. I actually got an inverter and the other things I need to use the cigarette lighter receptacle. But I also have the batteries as a backup. At no cost will I be stuck w/o music and audio books on this voyage.
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Old 02-03-2017, 04:59 PM
Location: Des Moines Metro
5,048 posts, read 5,970,897 times
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Have a safe trip! Update us when you can!
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Old 02-09-2017, 12:26 PM
646 posts, read 781,610 times
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Made it in! That was grueling!!! Took about 59.5 hours to get from Silver Spring, Md. to Auburn, CA, where I stopped at a hotel for the night before getting up and driving to Sacramento the following morning and moving in.

Although I had the mattress on boxes in the back, it was too cold to lie down back there. Also, I just didn't feel safe, not least because if someone shut the door you would be trapped. So I slept for about 4-5 hours in total sitting straight up in the cab. I would park at a rest stop, turn the truck off, put a jacket on over a hoodie, put ear plugs in, and pull a blanket over my head like a ghost. It wasn't easy, but kept me from falling asleep at the wheel.

Listened to some mixtapes and "Into Thin Air" by Jon Krakauer, the latter of which freaked me out as I was driving through the mountains as I listed to it. I was also at peace with my thoughts for a considerable amount of time.

I agree with the poster/s who said that it's unsafe to take I-80 through the Rockies in the winter. Even though the weather was good for winter standards, I ran into some really strong crosswinds in the Rockies, especially Nevada. Then, in Reno, right before I got to Donner Pass, it started raining hard. I didn't think anything of it, and was enjoying the scenery as I started going up the Pass toward the checkpoint. Little did I know that the rain was going to turn into perhaps the strongest snow I've ever experienced when I got to a higher elevation. I was stuck in blizzard-like conditions for 1.5 hours. Then, some traffic patrol personnel kicked me off the freeway because I didn't have snow chains. So, in treacherous conditions, I had to take a dark mountain road to a gift shop and buy snow chains. Then I had to drive back up the road in heavy snow, get back on the freeway, and drive 40+ miles in ever-accumulating snow with limited visibility. It was probably the most hazardous thing I've ever done, and an eye-opening way to end a long road trip across the Rockies. I honestly don't think I'll ever do that in the winter again.

Getting gas every .5 tank was a great idea. I-80 through Wyoming, Utah, and Nevada is so remote and gas stations can be few and far between. I actually had a little more than .5 tank in Reno, but I still filled up just in case. Proved to be a shrewd decision, as I was already under enough stress up there and didn't need to worry about running out of gas on top of that.

For the most part, my cheap flip phone did not have reception from Central/Western Nebraska to the Central Valley of California. I did get a signal in Salt Lake City and Reno. I also got it at the lower elevations in Donner Pass. That was problematic, and an issue for which I'll have to plan ahead if I ever take this trek again.

Finally, I took 70 W to 68 W to 79 N to 70 W to 74 W to 80 W. Although you can take 70 W straight to 80 W, I did not want to pay the tolls on the Pennsylvania Turnpike.

Even though the truck had a CD player, the inverter trick worked great for charging my cell and plugging in the GPS at the same time.

That covers just about everything. Many thanks for the help. I feel like you guys/gals told me essentially everything I needed to know. You all are life savers.
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Old 02-09-2017, 01:16 PM
Location: South Florida
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Glad you made it safely!!!
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Old 02-10-2017, 04:35 PM
Location: Des Moines Metro
5,048 posts, read 5,970,897 times
Reputation: 9429
Wow! What a trip! Thanks so much for the update. Good luck on your new adventure.
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