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  1. Default San Francisco to Detroit

    I am new to the forum and was having trouble "searching" for information someone may have already posted...how do I do a search?

    I am driving from San Francisco to Detroit at the end of August and have limited time...but I want to check out the points of interest on the shortest route possible.

    Any suggestions. I have 3 days to make the trip.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Easy and Impossible

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America forum.

    Doing a Search is easy. On the second green menu bar at the top of this page, click on 'Search' at the far right and type in whatever terms you want to look for. Then click on 'Go'. The advanced search offers a few more options, but really, the simple search should suffice.

    Getting from San Francisco to Detroit in three days is another matter. That's 2400 miles, or 800 miles a day. You simply will not have time to complete such a journey safely by even the shortest route, let alone check out any points of interest. You really need to find more time for the drive, or consider flying.

    AZBuck

  3. Default SF to Detroit

    how much time should I allow myself to arrive in Detroit from SF?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula
    Posts
    3,318

    Default 42 hours

    Conventional wisdom here at RTA says that if you only do brief stops for quick meals, restroom breaks, gas, etc., without lingering anywhere along the way, that you will usually average about 57mph. Based on that, this trip will take you about 42 hours. About 14 hours per day.

    MS Streets & Trips software says that the trip should take you about 37-1/2 hours. About 12-1/2 hours per day. But this estimate does not include any stops for the types of stuff listed above.

    Either way, unless you can add more days, you're going to be to be driving for longer each day than we can safely recommend. I would say that you need a minimum 5 days to make this trip, and that is still a bit over 8 hours per day in the car.

    If you insist on doing this over 3 days, you might want to plan your first stop for the night in Wells, NV, and your second stop at Pine Bluffs, WY. This will cut your trip into 3 relatively equal legs. Unfortunately, the stops are both in relatively sparsely populated areas where accomodations might be a bit harder to find. I don't normally recommend getting reservations ahead of time but, in this case, it might be a good idea.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,067

    Default A slight tweek

    I think Judy may have made a slight mistake in her calculations on stops for a 3 day trip. While the SF to Wells and Wells to Pine Bluffs would be 600 and 700 mile days, Pine Bluffs to Detroit is nearly 1200 miles and would include your one day where traffic (in chicago) will be a significant factor.

    If you are doing a 4 day trip, which I think would be the minimumn I would ever dare taking this trip even on a speed run, Wells and Pine Bluffs (or perhaps Cheyenne for more lodging options) would be good stops for the first two days, and then break somewhere around Des Moines or Iowa City on a third night.

    If you are going to do a komakazi 3 day run here, I'd think Rock Springs, Wyoming and Omaha, Nebraska would be your target destinations. That would give you about 900 miles (16 Hours) on the road the first day, and a little over 700 miles (13 hours) your next two days.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default Put it in Perspective

    How would you feel about a day trip to Seattle? If that sounds a like it's a little far to drive in one day, what you are proposing by driving to Detroit in three days is to do that drive, get a minimum amount of sleep, do that drive again, get a minimum amount of sleep, and do that drive again. Hopefully, you can see why that would not be considered safe and we cannot recommend it. I would say that at the least you need four days, and I strongly suggest 5. I also agree with Judy that these are the kinds of trips where pre-booking rooms makes sense. It will make sure that your legs are evenly spaced, that you won't be tempted to keep driving when you should really stop, and that you won't waste time looking for places on the road.

    AZBuck

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Washington state coast/Olympic Peninsula
    Posts
    3,318

    Default Thanks, Michael

    I'm glad you found my mistake so I didn't lead someone astray! How the heck did I do that anyway?

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