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Take a road trip! Do you? How?

Discussion in 'Tilted Life and Sexuality' started by Borla, Jun 3, 2014.

  1. Borla

    Borla Moderator Staff Member

    I have been in the planning phase for a few bike trips recently, and it occurred to me that it might be interesting to discuss road trips in general a bit. Especially for those of us in the US, it is almost part of the culture. Families load kids in the minivan to cart them off to Disney, or Grandma's, or the Grand Canyon, or camping, or wherever. Young people take them to flex their independence. Retired people take them to exercise their freedom of schedule.

    First, are road trips on your 'to do' list, or have they been? How long does it have to be to qualify in your mind for a 'road trip'?

    I've taken road trips for as long as I can remember. My parents didn't have the money to fly us to vacations. In fact, we rarely took what most would call true vacations. Usually it was a road trip to our grandparents' house for a long weekend, or a few hours away for some camping, or a couple hundred miles to visit old friends. We always drove wherever we were going. Back then you didn't have tablets, cell phones, high tech handheld video games, or DVD players in cars. We actually *gasp* talked to one another. Or read. I've always loved to read, so that is what I usually did. Sometimes we would play games.

    Since growing up I've taken many road trips. Anymore, especially considering the amount I drive on a weekly basis for work, it takes a pretty long trip for me to think of it in terms of a 'road trip'. Maybe 350-400 miles as a minimum.

    What road trips have you taken?

    As a kid I was all over the Midwest and SouthEast, with one East Coast trip to NYC that I remember and one trip to TX that I remember. Mostly to visit relatives or friends. As an adult I've been just about everywhere in the Eastern 2/3 of the country on various road trips, save the Maine/NH/VT area. Some of the more notable ones have been to FL, and one great one we took with another couple that covered everything from IL to DC to NY (city and upstate), and back over the course of 10-11 days.

    Are you someone who drives, or is along for the ride? Are you all about the journey, or all about the destination?

    I drive. Period. Where we typically have gone in FL is about 1100-1200 miles. I always drive the entire way down. We've done that trip half a dozen times or so, and I don't believe I've ridden a single mile going that direction. On the way home my wife will sometimes drive 200-300 miles during the middle of the return trip, but often I'll drive that entire way too. On the trip we took with the other couple to DC/NY, of 2200 miles, I drove about 1700. I don't sleep well when I'm a passenger, and I enjoy driving, so I'd rather do that. I also tend towards being a control freak, think I am more aware than most drivers, and I think most people drive too slow. :p Often on longer trips my wife and I will plan to leave in the evening, I'll drive all night, she'll sleep, and then we gain a half day or so the next morning at our destination that we might not have gotten if we'd had to break up the drive. I have no issue pulling an all nighter behind the wheel and it has come in handy many times.

    I am almost always all about the destination. I usually make that 1100 mile trip to FL with only two stops, three tops. My wife sleeps (so she doesn't need bathroom/meal breaks) and I time mine for when the gas light comes on, lol. This I am trying to change a little. I need to enjoy the journey more sometimes. Make it part of the fun, part of the vacation, etc. I've come to this realization after a few of the bike trips I've taken. The trips were purely for pleasure, yet I kept finding myself pushing to get to the next stop on time, or get to the destination without delay. I found myself doing a mental face palm and saying 'the whole reason you are out here is to enjoy the ride dummy!' Slowly I am becoming better about that part, especially when it is truly a trip for pleasure.

    What about you? What is your road trip experience or back ground like? Have any planned soon? Notable stories or experiences?
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2014
  2. Speed_Gibson

    Speed_Gibson Hacking the Gibson

    Wolf 359
    More than a few of the summers in my youth were spent flying to the east coast and driving a rented car around major and not so major sites from the War Between the States. The most significant one was the 125th re-enactment of Gettysburg in 1988 but there were others in there as well.

    edit: missing word that my head said and the board should have known to include somehow.
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2014
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  3. snowy

    snowy so kawaii Staff Member

    My family took a number of road trips when I was growing up. Living out West, things are a little farther apart. My husband and I still enjoy taking road trips, and most of our vacations have been such. We like to combine our road trips with camping. Our last big road trip before we both were preoccupied by graduate school was a trip to Southern Oregon, and we visited two wine regions and Crater Lake on the trip. We've also done the Redwoods and Central Oregon (our favorite road trip destination). One trip we really want to do together is Zion National Park, but I think we need a new car before that trip. We've both done Zion separately, and it's such a beautiful park that we want to go back together. I always drive, unless I'm too tired, or he really doesn't want to get carsick.

    We're hitting the road this weekend for a mini-trip. We don't know where we're going exactly, yet, but we'll figure it out.
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  4. rogue49

    rogue49 Tech Kung Fu Artist Staff Member

    Road trips are both on my to-do list and spontaneous.

    Mostly I do the driving, I don't mind it at all. Even if I'm with someone.
    But it's not an ownership thing, if they want to...go for it.
    It's just that most know I'm very efficient and know where I'm going, so they let me.
    My friends always liked me being driver, because I could find anywhere and deal with anything.

    I've been all over the US...and into Canada & Mexico.
    I've driven cross-continent at least 6 times.
    When my mom & I moved from San Diego to DC, she drove the truck...I was the "bandit" zipping everywhere to navigate & negotiate for her.

    Hell, I even did a spontaneous road-trip to a TFP get-together once, DC to Chicago. (14 hours)

    I don't need fancy, although I appreciate it too.
    I've even slept in my car overnight, with no issue.

    I love the trip and the target.
    Even if it's bad...those end up being great stories.

    My focus is being productive but casual.
    Comfortable for the drive is also key, but I'm also very aware of idiots & assholes on the road.

    I stop as needed. Each stop is actually interesting to me, even just a simple gas station.

    At the destination, mostly it's about the people.
    I don't really do tours, but at the same time I explore if time allows.
    I also love interesting things.
    Not your typical establishments.

    And food, I love food...it can even be fast food,
    but it really is important to me.

    It's an adventure...and I'm in control. (for the most part, you've got to flex)
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2014
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  5. First, are road trips on your 'to do' list, or have they been? How long does it have to be to qualify in your mind for a 'road trip'?

    I grew up with my brothers and I fighting in the back of the van while our parents threatened to turn the car around during our yearly Ohio to Wisconsin summer roadtrips.

    If you have to stay over night somewhere, I believe it to be a road trip. If you can make it there and back in less than 24 hours, it's a day trip. However, if you do go somewhere that's not that far, but a good deal of time is spent on the road, it could be deemed a road trip. It all depends on the mission, or in some cases, the lack thereof.

    What road trips have you taken?

    Like I said above...Wisconsin every year with the family.

    I've been all over the Midwest with my family or friends. I've even gone on road trips by myself. I love them. The farthest I've driven by myself was roughly 600 miles to visit my brother.

    @cinnamongirl and I made a trek to N'awlins from Ohio once. That was fun.

    Moving from Ohio to Oregon was sort of a road trip since I was with my brother and we stopped at a lot of interesting spots on the way. We had a blast drinking a beer in every state we drove through. We did the I-80 route coming here, but I'd like to do the I-90 route or even the I-40, Lots of ways to get across the country.

    Are you someone who drives, or is along for the ride? Are you all about the journey, or all about the destination?

    I like to drive, but I really like navigating too. With an actual paper map. The GPS is nice, but using the map is so much fun. My daddy taught me how to read a map on those 12+hour trips to Wisconsin. Although after 20 years he knew the route by heart, he still let me navigate. It's a valuable skill to know and I intend on teaching BabySquirrel. When the world comes to an end and all electronics are useless, she'll be able to navigate the world with an actual map.

    Kids these days have it too easy.

    The journey is half the fun. I like stopping at road side attractions. The cornier the better. I think my mother is the reason I love doing that. Although I didn't appreciate it as a teenager, I can appreciate it more now. No more eye rolls from me when it comes to the world's biggest ball of twine. (Never actually saw it, but would love to.)

    Driving on Route 66 across the country is on my bucket list.

    I am looking forward to my first road trip with my little family at the end of the month. DaddySquirrel, BabySquirrel and I are going down to San Francisco. It's about 575 trip taking roughly 9 hours for most people. Since we'll have a baby with us, we'll have to stop at least three times to feed and change her. I am planning tentative stops to take in a lot of sights since I've never been to California before and haven't seen much of Southern Oregon.
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  6. Speed_Gibson

    Speed_Gibson Hacking the Gibson

    Wolf 359
    My biggest drive was from Jacksonville FL to Oregon (Woodburn to be specific, understandably that name does not much mean to most on here) after I left the military. I drove the I-10 route and stopped in Texas and Arizona for several days to visit family along the way.
    All of the trips I have planned in my head these days revolve around what will be good subjects for my cameras. Both my recent DSLR and 40 year old SLR have their strong points.
    I am planning on taking "shorter" trips around the general Palouse region over the next year or so with my FTb-QL and enough TRI-X 400 film to take pictures for at least 1 or 2 coffee table type books showcasing this region in B&W.
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2014
  7. Borla

    Borla Moderator Staff Member

    I agree that navigating is an important skill, and is becoming more rare with GPS capabilities. I have a good sense of direction and could read a map since I was a kid. I love sitting down with an atlas and Google Maps and planning out scenic bike trips or determining routes for longer trips.

    My wife can't read a map and almost never knows which way is north/east/south/west. She can get to places she's been before just fine, or use her GPS, but has ZERO sense of direction on her own. She is constantly amazed that I can usually find my way places just fine with an occasional glance at the map or by just knowing the direction to head.
  8. snowy

    snowy so kawaii Staff Member

    I use Waze a lot to help me get places the first time; after that, I only use it for traffic info/knowing where the cops are. But usually I use Google Maps before we even get in the car to figure stuff out. I come from a long line of map nerds.
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  9. Street Pattern

    Street Pattern Very Tilted

    I can say exactly the same thing.

    Of course, my wife is left-handed, and left-handers often have difficulty with wayfinding.
  10. snowy

    snowy so kawaii Staff Member

    Say what?

    I'll admit to being directionally dyslexic with right and left, but I have no difficulty with my cardinal directions, and always functioned as the family navigator (my mother is a landmark person, not a map person).
  11. Street Pattern

    Street Pattern Very Tilted

    I said "often", not "always". And this comes from her -- someone with pretty deep knowledge of neuropsych.
  12. snowy

    snowy so kawaii Staff Member

  13. Borla

    Borla Moderator Staff Member

    That's me anytime I'm headed somewhere I'm not familiar with. My wife will ask why I don't put it in my phone's GPS, or how I don't need a map. I'm like 'because I already memorized the route!' Same thing with my riding buddies. We stop for gas or the bathroom and they are all checking their phones for texts or messages. I'm on mine plotting out the next 100 miles of backroads and where our next stop is.
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  14. Charlatan

    Charlatan sous les pav├ęs, la plage

    Another lefty here. I have a great sense of direction and rarely (very) get lost. It's to the point where one of my friends calls me Magellan.

    I have never heard of lefties having issues with wayfinding.

    As for road trips, I am a map geek. I love to look at maps. I will plan multiple routes to the same destination, just to see something new. Google Maps? One of the best things ever.
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  15. snowy

    snowy so kawaii Staff Member

    Seriously. I can spend hours farting around on Google Maps, and often do.

    For those of us in the States, here's a website I love and use with some frequency to plan trips:

    Road Trip - Discover Your America with Roadtrippers
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  16. Borla

    Borla Moderator Staff Member

    Two other great things w/Google Maps.

    One, street view. I use this a lot when going to a place in the city (or any large city really) I'm not familiar with. It helps you know what building or storefront to look for, in case it isn't well marked. It also gives you an idea of how parking is in the neighborhood, and sometimes even how safe.

    Two, I love it for the 'search nearby' feature and just zooming in on areas and seeing the icons for local businesses. I used that recently on a bike trip to find an epic dive bar with fantastic burgers. All by complete random searching of an area I knew we'd be in.
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  17. Stan

    Stan Resident Dumbass

    First, are road trips on your 'to do' list, or have they been? How long does it have to be to qualify in your mind for a 'road trip'?

    Always done them, I'll continue as long as I can. My family always took driving vacations, I've extended it a bit. We frequently look at the weather maps for CO and decide on the spot. No real distance minimum in my mind. Steamboat Springs, RMNP, Aspen, or Vail are very doable motorcycle day trips and are in different directions. Molly and Jackson prefer camping, which will be on hold this year; but we're buying a camper that meets with their approval. Really looking forward to using the hell out of it.

    What road trips have you taken?

    You name it. Maine, Alaska, Western Canada ... I'm not fond of heat or crowds. I've visited the Grand Canyon and Washington, DC; but quiet, cooler places in the mountains or along a coast are preferable. We're really, really fond of Glacier National Park and have visited it 7-8 times. It's probably the first place we'll take the new trailer.

    Are you someone who drives, or is along for the ride? Are you all about the journey, or all about the destination?

    100% destination; though we aren't opposed to having several destinations on a trip. My wife is willing to drive and I take her up on it; but logistics and route finding are mine. I own a gps, it looks really pretty on my BMW. I'm very adept with maps and use them religiously. I'm also competent with topographic maps, compass, and magnetic declination, if necessary.

    I'm in the process of special ordering an RV for our retirement. It's a major purchase and life decision for us. For us, retirement will be a series of road trips with a home base in the mountains.
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  18. My sense of direction has gone downhill in recent years. Could be because I'm getting older. Might be because of the MS. Probably all the brain cells I killed with copious amounts of booze.

    Meh....if the sun is out, I can find my way around. Never been able to find that pesky North Star. Thought I found it one time, but it was a plane.
  19. cynthetiq

    cynthetiq Administrator Staff Member Donor

    New York City
    Last year I drove from NYC to PA, PA to TN, TN to SC. It was an awesome trip.

    I met up with 1 other roadster Sunday night in PA. We drove to meet up with 2 others in King of Prussia. From there we drove to West Virginia and stayed overnight so that we could tackle Blue Ridge Parkway in the morning. We drove BRP down to TN and then took refuge a few miles from Tail of the Dragon. The following morning was us doing 2 Dragon runs and then heading to our final destination in SC. SC was meeting up with 100 other roadsters and driving in the mountains. We left on Sunday afternoon. It was a week of daily driving and driving hard. :)

    I can't wait to do it again this year but this time all in PA.
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  20. MeltedMetalGlob

    MeltedMetalGlob Resident Loser Donor

    Who cares, really?
    I adore road trips, and take them whenever I can. I'd go into detail, but I'm better with visual aids. ;)

    Two vids that show sights from the road:

    (Yeah, I posted these elsewhere, but nobody watched them in that thread anyway.)
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