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Old 08-24-2010, 12:36 AM
 
Location: New Orleans, United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLnSAV View Post
i find this very hard to believe especially under the conditions you prescribe. I got a friend who has driven from Atlanta to San Diego in 36 hours several times but 24 hours seems impossible.



I should have used a word other than "exactly", but 5 more hours isn't really that much in that scenario.
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Old 08-24-2010, 05:37 AM
 
Location: Texas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLnSAV View Post
i find this very hard to believe especially under the conditions you prescribe. I got a friend who has driven from Atlanta to San Diego in 36 hours several times but 24 hours seems impossible.




Tha's roughly 2100 miles, so one would have to average just under 90 mph to do it. I suppose that's possible, but to maintain such an average would require top speeds of well over 100 mph on stretches of clear, open road to offset having to slow down for major urban areas and heavy traffic.

On the other hand, back in "the day," I would routinely run about the same distance (Dallas, TX to Portland, OR) in 31 to 36 hours in a fully loaded truck and that involved the use of a lot of two lane roads in Colorado and Wyoming. So...if that can be done in a big truck, I guess 2100 miles in 24 hours in a car would be possible too.....though I'd hate to be a passenger on such a trip!
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Old 06-03-2013, 12:16 PM
 
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Default Tennessee to Albuquerque

They did not drive straight through from Bent Fork, TN to Albuquerque, NM. They stayed the night in Amarillo at the Texan Inn.
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Old 06-04-2013, 07:56 AM
 
Location: Victoria TX
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In 1955, 400 miles was a hard-driving 12-hour day. Driving from New York to Los Angeles in four days would mean literally 24 hours a day switching drivers and eating on the fly.
I drove by myself from Mobile to Seattle in 1960, and never stopped to sleep, except to nap for an hour or two, and it took me four nights and three days, about 85 hours, in a Renault Dauphine. I just plotted the route I took (filtering for 'avoid highways' which did not exist then) and it came out to 3,062 miles, requiring 62 hours of actual driving time, even on today's roads in today's cars.

I would say New York to LA in 4 days in 1955 would be impossible to do in daylight driving, even by professional test drivers with a police escort. Google Maps today shows 2,955 miles NYC to LA, routing through Cincinnati and any point in Tennessee, requiring 44 hours of behind-the-wheel driving time, so even on the interstates today, its 11-hours a day driving time for four days.

Someone above said you can drive today from Nashfille to LA in exactly one day, but I serious doubt that that has ever actually been done. It would require an average speed of 83 mph, without accounting for any gas stops. Assuming a 400 mile range and ten minutes to gas up and pay and get back on the freeway, losing an hour there, you would need to maintain continuous highway speeds averaging 89 mph.

Regarding the actual traffic conditions, the traffic was very heavy on US highways, which were only two lanes (one each way), and it was almost impossible to safely pass a slower vehicle, so average speeds were well below the speed limit on rural highway. Even major highways were narrow and often had no shoulder, and sharp 90-degree turns were common where roads were laid out along pre-automobile grids. There were no bypasses -- if you went through Atlanta, you went right down Peachtree Street, with all the traffic that entailed. You also went through every town, with speed limits an enforced 25 mph and sometimes less if it was a speed trap, and there were lots of those. Maintaining an average cross-country speed of 40 mph was nearly impossible anywhere except the open prairies and deserts, where you had to carry water to pour into your radiator to keep from overheating. Driving across the deserts was not a gimme, in a 1940's car.

Even assuming there are ten times as many cars today as there were then, take 10% of all the cars off the Interstate, and put them down on the frontage road, and see what you get.

Last edited by jtur88; 06-04-2013 at 08:41 AM..
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Old 06-04-2013, 08:15 AM
 
Location: Jonesboro
3,874 posts, read 4,693,993 times
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I thoroughly love I Love Lucy & have pondered both their driving route & the timing questions repeatedly over the years.
I eventually came to assume that, though there were just the 4 episodes that dealt with their trip, we were not neccessarily suppose to assume that the trip was made in only 4 days.
On a side point, I have long been aware that they sang "California Here I Come" as they began their trip by crossing the Hudson River via The George Washington Bridge just upstream ffrom New York City.
My brother has insisted that they were crossing the Golden Gate Bridge at that point, probably because of the words "Golden Gate" in the song. Clearly though, the footage is of the GW Bridge & they did not travel to San Francisco in any episodes.
I believe that my brother still doubts me on this & thinks that they drove via San Francisco. Any thoughts?
Sorry if I seem to be hijacking this thread.
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Old 07-02-2015, 12:06 PM
 
2 posts, read 1,787 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by atler8 View Post
I thoroughly love I Love Lucy & have pondered both their driving route & the timing questions repeatedly over the years.
I eventually came to assume that, though there were just the 4 episodes that dealt with their trip, we were not neccessarily suppose to assume that the trip was made in only 4 days.
On a side point, I have long been aware that they sang "California Here I Come" as they began their trip by crossing the Hudson River via The George Washington Bridge just upstream ffrom New York City.
My brother has insisted that they were crossing the Golden Gate Bridge at that point, probably because of the words "Golden Gate" in the song. Clearly though, the footage is of the GW Bridge & they did not travel to San Francisco in any episodes.
I believe that my brother still doubts me on this & thinks that they drove via San Francisco. Any thoughts?
Sorry if I seem to be hijacking this thread.
Yes, it was the George Washington Bridge featured in that episode when they sing "California, Here I Come".
Being a tremendous "I Love Lucy" fan, I planned a trip to California with the Ricardos and Mertz trip in mind.
When I first crossed the Golden Gate Bridge I played in my car the version they sung on the show of "California, Here I Come" because it mentions the bridge-- and I think because of that is why some think it was the Golden Gate Bridge. I thought so, too, for a while.
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Old 07-02-2015, 01:34 PM
 
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This has been a great thread to read, and I'm late to join.

To further this some, we all agree and know its a fictional comedy show for entertainment-- and brother, was it ever entertaining! The greatest show of all time in my mind.

Something else to keep in mind is that although some drives would seem to fit into a four-day trip we have to take into consideration the timeframe within the show. I hope some of you can find this of value and entertaining:
- "California, Here We Come"- The Ricardos and Mertzs leave shortly before 6:00 p.m., as revealed by Fred who sarcastically tells Ricky after long delays that he wanted to leave at 6 (am) and they can just about make it.

- The next episode entitled "First Stop" (one of my personal favorites for the highway scenery) shows them on Ohio Route 48: a real stretch of road that runs from Dayton to Cincinnati. That drive today would take about 10 hours from New York to the Dayton area. Therefore, it would be around afternoon when they arrive at this location if it is indeed their first stop. Although hard to tell in black and white, it appears to be evening. It is revealed that they have been driving for a long time. They are eating from what is likely the same basket of food Ms. Trumbull gave them as they left at the end of the previous episode. The sandwich left is stale, which you could interpret as being the next evening. This is my speculation since we're all having fun here. When Fred asks to stop to eat Ricky says "we've got to get more milage today, Fred" as a result of their late start I would assume. Ricky finally consents and after some time they arrive at George Skinner's cafe to eat and ask about a room for the night, further adding to the it being evening. We know this is closer to Dayton, because he says his place is "the only thing clear to Cincinnati" (as if that is a long drive from there). Taking all of this into account, I definitely believe the is the next evening from the previous episode, whether they stopped before or not. They leave in the middle of the night to continue their trip.

- Next we see Lucy driving the group into a rundown gas station in Tennessee in "Tennessee Bound". She is very lost as it appears she has been traveling on old logging roads, according to the gas station attendant. In the previous episode it was revealed that they have been through Pennsylvania, in Ohio, and on their way to Indiana. So Lucy has gotten them really, really lost! They are outside the fictional town of Bent Fork, Tennessee. There is a place called East Fork Bent Creek in Hawkins County, near Morristown/Russellville. The nearby Knoxville has a Bent Fork Bike Fest annually. Based on that, I believe this to be the location- and that's a five-hour drive from the Dayton area to there. That timeline would seem perfect to be the next morning/early afternoon- and so too is the daylight. They leave after a brief jailing.

- The next episode "Ethel's Hometown" opens with the Ricardos and Mertzs in Amarillo, Texas the morning after staying at a motel there. The drive from Morristown to Amarillo is about 18 hours today, so with it being known that Ricky is pushing hard to get a lot of miles in a given day, it is very likely that the drove that day after leaving Tennessee to stay that night there. That would make this the morning of the third full day in my speculation. They drive to Albuquerque, New Mexico, which is about a five hour drive and arrive in daytime, again fitting into the timeframe. Ethel gives a performance there the next night.

- The next episode, "L.A. at Last" they arrive in daylight in Los Angeles. The drive from Albuquerque to Los Angeles is about 12 hours today. We know Ricky likes leaving at 6:00 a.m. and assuming they stayed a second night in Albuquerque this would place them there that evening. However, it appears that they are arriving at morning as Ricky asks Lucy what she is going to do all day. So, it would still fit that they left right after Ethel's performance that night and drove through the night. Therefore, with the timeline of the episode placed into their route, the earliest they would have arrived in L.A. would be six days in my figuring. It certainly would have been possible for their characters to have made more stops not part of the episodes and not have such a hard drive. But, the hard drive does fit within the continuity of the episodes.

Again, this is all my speculation using the episodes and locations as my guide. If I have made an error, or you see it differently, please post! I hope this helps and was fun to read. It was fun to finally be able to hash it out!
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Old 07-03-2015, 08:31 PM
 
Location: WA Desert, Seattle native
9,398 posts, read 8,863,546 times
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By the 1950's, many of todays major freeway routes had a primary U.S. or State highway either in the exact same place, parallel or very nearby. Not everyone, but many of todays two digit freeways did. I have old maps from 1950-52 to prove it! True, you had to drive through almost every little town, but as someone put it earlier, traffic was nothing compared to what it has become today.
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Old 07-03-2015, 10:09 PM
 
862 posts, read 1,196,187 times
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On the flip side of this thread..that train trip the Ricardos & Mertzes took from California back to New York, wonder how long of a trip THAT would had been back in those days ??
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Old 07-03-2015, 10:15 PM
 
Location: Texas
44,254 posts, read 64,332,595 times
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I don't think that it was necessarily all in one day driving.
Where did they say that?
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