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  1. Default 1st TIMER!! From AL to CA to VA in a month

    My boyfriend and I want take a cross country trip in May (late May). We'll be leaving from VA and going to Alabama (birmingham). From there we want to go to L.A. then up to Washington, then back to VA. However coming back we'd like to take a mid section route instead of a northern route (if that makes any sense). We only have a months time to do this in. I don't even know where to START with the questions. I've been reading some tips here and there. We're going to be bringing a cooler with us.. only shopping at grocery stores. We would like to camp our way across - driving only 5-6 hours a day.

    I'm looking for some nice scenic roads going across the country I guess. Some more tips
    Support saying YES you can do this :-D

    Nicole

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,060

    Default The Easy Part: "Of Course, you can do this"

    Quote Originally Posted by nikkibabe224 View Post
    We'll be leaving from VA and going to Alabama (birmingham). From there we want to go to L.A. then up to Washington, then back to VA. However coming back we'd like to take a mid section route instead of a northern route
    Welcome to the Great American RoadTrip Forum! That is going to be a lot of miles -- without charting it out, you need to expect to cover at least 8500 miles in that month and if you are only going to drive 5-6 hours per day, you will need to be on the road at least 26 days. If you spend a few days at various places along the way, you will either need more days or spend more hours on the road. I suspect that you will need to have several (10-15) days of 10+ hour driving days to accomplish this.

    How much $$ are you budgeting for this adventure? Even with camping and eating out of cooler, this is going to be a costly trip. Here are some budgeting ideas.
    And some ideas about reasonable distances to drive in a day.

    The trip is certainly doable -- but it will be a long trip for a couple of first-timers!

    Mark

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

    Default Don't get hung up on your itinerary

    This can often be good advice for any road-tripper but I think it's most applicable to first-timers. Since this is your first road-trip, you really have no sense of your travel style and how long you like to drive, how often you want to be able to stop and explore, how many days it takes for you to "hit the wall" and need to not get in the car at all that day because you're sick of sitting in it, etc. This varies from person-to-person.

    I suggest that you rough out your itinerary but keep it very flexible. If you're driving along and see wonderful things to explore, allow yourself flexilibility to stop for a few hours, or even a few days if you want. There's nothing wrong with changing your destination along the way. Or not even having a destination but, rather, a general direction of travel. If you don't make it all the way to LA or Washington this trip, so what? Do it another trip.

    Like Mark suggested, it's do-able but it means keeping a steady pace to do so. You might love travel at a quick clip. Or you might hate it so adjust as needed to make it fun. It is more important to do a trip you enjoy, not crossing off destinations on a checklist.
    Last edited by PNW Judy; 01-22-2008 at 01:27 PM. Reason: clarification

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