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Old 04-05-2016, 01:18 PM
 
Location: Miami
29 posts, read 14,659 times
Reputation: 10

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Good afternoon all, I have been wanting to go out on an adventure for quite some time now and I will be going on vacation sometime late August.. I want to make the drive to Los Angeles. 2700 miles and a little over a week to enjoy it. I want to see what some of this country is about and I personally love California so I want to enjoy at least three days or so there. I will be traveling with my one year old Belgian Malinois.. My work place gives me pretty good benefits on car rentals, so I plan on renting a small gas efficient crossover to make the trip. I have never made this journey by myself and I would like some input from people who have.. Is it enough time to not feel pressured completely? I have a friend who made the drive twice and it took him under two days. I also don't want to underestimated it and take longer than I initially expect.. I want to know what there is to see along the way, what my best route options are, and realistically if a week and two days or so is enough time to make a good worthwhile trip.. I love the west coast and the weather is has to offer. Would rather spend the airfare money on fuel and get a tour of the southern part of the country.. Any and all advice will be appreciated ... Looking to start organizing myself for this!!
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Old 04-05-2016, 01:35 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
18,081 posts, read 22,924,480 times
Reputation: 35201
That sounds crazy to me. You wouldn't have time to stop or sleep, really.

I guess if you're really young, you'll survive it. But, you'll be driving for most of your vacation. I don't think you'll have time to stop and see anything.

I'd suggest you do a tour of the south, if you never have. Go see New Orleans and other interesting southern towns.

I've driven from CA as far as TN, and while living in TN, we drove to the Destin area of FL. Honestly, most of the drive once you get out of TN or AR, is super boring, flat desert with some oil pumps here and there. That's on I-40, which would be your most direct route. It will also be insanely hot in August.

I guess you could go that way, and on your way back, take the northern route I-70/670. You'd see a bunch of states that way.

I've also driven from WA to TN through Wyoming, and down through Kentucky, etc. Even going that way, it's not very interesting most of the way. The middle of the country is flat and boring for the most part.

I guess I'm getting too old for marathon trips. I'd rather drive a day to get somewhere and then just explore that area.
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Old 04-05-2016, 01:40 PM
 
12,264 posts, read 18,393,933 times
Reputation: 19082
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parkedem1 View Post
Good afternoon all, I have been wanting to go out on an adventure for quite some time now and I will be going on vacation sometime late August.. I want to make the drive to Los Angeles. 2700 miles and a little over a week to enjoy it. I want to see what some of this country is about and I personally love California so I want to enjoy at least three days or so there. I will be traveling with my one year old Belgian Malinois.. My work place gives me pretty good benefits on car rentals, so I plan on renting a small gas efficient crossover to make the trip. I have never made this journey by myself and I would like some input from people who have.. Is it enough time to not feel pressured completely? I have a friend who made the drive twice and it took him under two days. I also don't want to underestimated it and take longer than I initially expect.. I want to know what there is to see along the way, what my best route options are, and realistically if a week and two days or so is enough time to make a good worthwhile trip.. I love the west coast and the weather is has to offer. Would rather spend the airfare money on fuel and get a tour of the southern part of the country.. Any and all advice will be appreciated ... Looking to start organizing myself for this!!
Are we talking 9 days up and back? That's doable but you won't leave much time for siteseeing at all. Most of the driving will be on interstates which get extremely boring seeing the same tree lined multi-lane path with exits for the same chain gas stations and McDonald's every 10 miles. Once you get to west Texas the geography gets interesting. Your dog also complicates things.

If your idea is to just take a drive across country with really no stops anywhere, this is fine. Some people find long drives relaxing. If it's your idea to really site see on the way - up to Grand Canyon, explore New Orleans, up to Memphis, down to Phoenix, over to the four corners - most of those sites you will have to take a day just to detour to see them unless they are directly on your route. It will be tough to schedule much site seeing.
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Old 04-05-2016, 01:52 PM
 
Location: Miami
29 posts, read 14,659 times
Reputation: 10
I understand it may sound crazy, but I am 23 and still haven't done anything like this. It's important for me to be realistic, but I don't get much opportunity to do this kind of thing with work/school .. I know I can do it, but who has a comparable story?
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Old 04-05-2016, 01:54 PM
 
Location: Miami
29 posts, read 14,659 times
Reputation: 10
Also, I am really eager to take myself somewhere rather than just pay a boarding pass and fly somewhere. I would have much more time, but the point is for the experience. I guess I just have it on my bucket list.
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Old 04-05-2016, 02:00 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
18,081 posts, read 22,924,480 times
Reputation: 35201
Well, I did it more than once when I was young. And you're right, if I hadn't done it, I wouldn't know what it looks like first-hand.

What the heck. Take some good tunes, your cell phone, charger, tons of water for you, the dog and the car, if necessary, and enjoy the cruise.

Take your dog's food, so he doesn't get sick and resist giving him a bunch of chicken nuggets - which are easy to eat while driving - sans sauce :-)

Some rest areas are sketchy, especially at night. If it's dark or it just looks sketchy, I stop at a McDonalds to use the restroom and let my dog out.

If your dog likes to get wet, you might look at where you can take a quick detour to a river. It's been a long time, but I think you can do this at the Colorado river at least. Not remembering which state that was. Look on Google maps.

Also, take a blanket, or at least a space blanket, in case you end up stranded in the desert at night. It can get cold, even in summer.
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Old 04-05-2016, 02:01 PM
 
Location: New Mexico
6,550 posts, read 3,653,233 times
Reputation: 12301
In August? Do you sweat and does your dog shed or drool? This reminds me of summer trips with a collie dog. Not very enjoyable as you will be covered in dog hair and drool as will the rental car. Of course the dog will want to have its head out the window unless you use a crate. Maybe find a friend to care for the dog.

Trying to drive that distance alone in only 2 or 3 days is a challenge and the view from the interstate is not very inspiring. My suggestion would be to not take the dog, fly one way then rent a car for the land route back and see things along the way. Whatever you decide, enjoy your trip.
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Old 04-05-2016, 02:09 PM
 
Location: Hougary, Texberta
8,565 posts, read 11,065,012 times
Reputation: 10280
There's no chance you can do it there and back in a week, never mind having three days in LA, if you've not had some significant experience doing long distances.


So 2700 miles each way. Google says 40 hours, each way. So, 80 hours return, and that's before adding gas/food/fuel/sleep/doggy break stops.


Even if you took two weekends and your week, so 9 days, that's nearly nine hours a day EVERY DAY driving. Totally can be done, but don't think that you're going to have time to do anything.


You want three days in LA, no problem. You're now doing 80 hours in six days. That's about 13.5 hours driving each day. Again, that doesn't include breaks or stops. So you're looking 18 plus hours every day on the road. Sleep for six and do it again. Easy to do for a couple days, maybe three, but you start having diminishing returns after about 5 days. Especially doing it alone.


Sounds like a blast, but I'd try Austin and back in a week, or do some smaller trips to test your limits a bit.
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Old 04-05-2016, 02:10 PM
 
Location: Miami
29 posts, read 14,659 times
Reputation: 10
That is an alternative, anybody dealt with a rental car going one way? I'm pretty sure there is a hefty fee associated with brining a California car to Sfl or vice-Versa. The dog doesn't HAVE to come, but I would like to bring her. She is pretty well behaved and I would like to be able to say I took her with my instead of stashing her at home with a babysitter. I know the challenge is really getting much done in 9 days. But I still have some time to decide.. An ideal trip would be fly one way and drive back, depending on the associated rental fee for bringing a car back..
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Old 04-05-2016, 02:13 PM
 
Location: Hougary, Texberta
8,565 posts, read 11,065,012 times
Reputation: 10280
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parkedem1 View Post
That is an alternative, anybody dealt with a rental car going one way? I'm pretty sure there is a hefty fee associated with brining a California car to Sfl or vice-Versa. The dog doesn't HAVE to come, but I would like to bring her. She is pretty well behaved and I would like to be able to say I took her with my instead of stashing her at home with a babysitter. I know the challenge is really getting much done in 9 days. But I still have some time to decide.. An ideal trip would be fly one way and drive back, depending on the associated rental fee for bringing a car back..
You want a real experience, go to transfercar, get an RV for free, take the 9 days to drive across the country, drive it to LA and fly home. Space, and room for the dog, never mind the ability to sleep about anywhere.
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