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  1. #1

    Default The Ultimate Road Trip/Vacation

    For the past 6 months I've had this nagging feeling that I just wanted (and needed) a vacation after having gone through high school, and now 4 years of college(one year left, that's what happens when you change majors a bunch).....so next summer (2008) I planned on taking about a month off, packing my car and driving to all the places in America that I'd never been to, some that I had been to and all that I wanted to go to. I figured that if I didn't take this epic road trip now I would probably be a long time before I was afforded the time to take a month off.

    After discussing this trip with a few friends they all decided that it was just about the greatest idea that they have ever heard of....and so it began. What started out as a 30 solo road trip morphed into an even greater once in a lifetime event. We discussed the idea of renting a van, or possibly buying something relatively cheap and using that...but that wasn't good enough. Then the light bulb went off over my head....what about a bus?! We'll have more room...a place to sleep and did I mention that we'll have more room? : )

    The search began, I immediatly hit ebay.com...low and behold I came across a former school bus that had been converted into a camper. Fast forward two weeks and me and a buddy are on a plane flying to Kansas, City MO...we then drove to Tulsa, OK and bought the 48statebus. We drove it, the better part of 2 days back to Pensacola, FL and here it rests waiting for our adventure at the beginning of next May.

    By the way, we're not hippies I swear I know that if you think of a a converted bus you get this visual image of a rainbow colored rolling mural full of pot smoking hairy people but that's not us AT ALL...we're just a bunch of college kids that want to enjoy life while we can...after all eventually we'll all be dead!

    If you go to the bus' website, you'll be able to check out a bunch of pictures of the bus and a few of the lucky people able to go on this trip.
    Since we bought the bus we've knocked down 1of the walls to the "bathroom" and threw the porter-potty out. We installed a second futon and switched to a smaller (less stinky) fridge that was more suitable to what we needed. We've now got the 8 people that we were hoping for but the biggest news is the map that we've layed out for the trip. If that map link doesn't work the myspace page has a hyperlink in bright red letters that say "the map"...it'll definitely work that way. That link will show you everywhere we're planning on driving and stopping, but here's the 48 day break down.

    Day 1: Lunch in New Orleans. Drive to Memphis, Tn. It's gonna be a long day

    Day 2: Another long day of driving stopping in Tulsa, OK

    Day 3: Drive almost to Albaquerque, NM on route 66 some parts of the day

    Day 4: Drive to "the 4 corners" that night arrive at Glen Canyon National Recreational Area)this is where it gets good...

    Day 5, 6, 7: Rent a houseboat on Lake Powell...the thing is BAD!

    Day 8: Drive to the Grand Canyon, and then on to Lake Mead which is right next to Vegas

    Day 9 and 10: Vegas

    Day 11: sleep in b/c we'll be out late in Vegas and then drive to San Diego

    Day 12: San Diego Zoo

    Day 13: Drive to LA

    Day 14: LA

    Day 15: Drive to Yosemite National Park

    Day 16: Yosemite

    Day 17 and 18: San Francisco, Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz Tour, Ride the Cable Car

    Day 19: Drive to Winnemucca, NV my friend wants to go Opel farming...whatever

    Day 20: opel farm

    Day 21: Drive to Crater Lake

    Day 22: Crater Lake

    Day 23: Drive to Mt. Rainier

    Day 24: Mt. Rainier/Seattle, Space Needle, Ferry Boat, the Underground Tour

    Day 25: Long day of Driving to Yellowstone

    Day 26 and 27: Yellowstone

    Day 28: Long Days drive to Mt. Rushmore

    Day 29: Mt. Rushmore

    Day 30: Longest Drive of the trip...hopefully reach Chicago or just outside of Chicago

    Day 31: Chicago Sears Tower, Wrigley Field

    Day 32: Detroit, GM center

    Day 33: Cleveland, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

    Day 34: Drive to Buffalo, NY

    Day 35: Niagara Falls, Maid of the Mist, Canada

    Day 36: Drive to Adirondack State Park

    Day 37: Drive to Maine, eat lobster....yum

    Day 38: Drive to New York City

    Day 39-41: NY, all the touristy stuff: Statue of Liberty, Times Square, Central Park, Metropolitian Muesum of Art, Empire State Building and maybe even a tour.

    Day 42 and 43: Drive to spend a day in Hershey Park riding roller coasters

    Day 44: Philly

    Day 45: Drive to Washington D.C.

    Day 46: Washington D.C.

    Day 47: Drive to my grandparents house in Latta, SC for some home cooked meals and a free place to sleep

    Day 48: Drive back to Pensacola

    We'll be doing more in a month and a half than most people do in their lives! I'm especially excited about the houseboat and the helicopter tour...that should really be amazing.

    So what do you guys think, anything we've left out or that you would change? Is Cleveland not worth an entire day, only 2 of us really want to go to the rock and roll hall of fame, is it worth it?

    Let me know what ya think....

    I don't really know why this was moved from the summer roadtrip section...we are going in the summer and are in the planning stages...so it seemed to fit. Oh well, didn't mean to mess up the order of things, sorry 'bout that...
    Last edited by 48statebus; 06-15-2007 at 12:53 PM. Reason: Preferred URL format; Remove whitspace

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    10,957

    Default Welcome

    Welcome to the RTA forum!

    Its sounds like you've got quite the amazing trip planned out.

    The only thing I might be concerned about is the budget for such an elaborate trip, and how much it would cost to repair a bus if you have trouble on the road.

    I might also look at finding ways that you guys can spit up for some significant time during your trip. It will be virtually impossible to keep 8 people on the same page for more than a month, and giving everyone a little bit of space from time to time will go a long way to a bus-wide blow up.

  3. #3

    Default

    We figure that the trip will probably cost $3000 per person. The break-down is as follows

    11,000 miles---we rounded WAY up to 16,000

    8mpg diesel--we rounded down this time...it actually gets 9-9.5 mpg which doesn't seem like a huge difference but it will definitely add up

    cost of diesel (most places) seems to be about $2.75 per gallon right now, cheaper in the midwest, more expensive on the coasts....we figured it at $3.00 per gallon

    So we've severly inflated the cost of buying diesel
    [(16,000miles/8mpg)x$3gallon ]/ 8 people on the bus comes to $750 worth of diesel

    ROOM & BOARD: [campsites] ($40 x 41 days)/8people = $205 / person
    [hotels] ($180(2 rooms) x 6 nights)/8 people = $135 / person
    =$340 per person to sleep

    again we think that we've over estimated the cost of rv camping in a national park...it should be considerably less than $40, and I doubt that we'll be staying in $90 a night hotels...we'll probably look for cheaper hotels like a motel 6 or something...just so that we have a hot shower

    We figured you can probably eat for $15 per person per day...we plan on packing a LOT of food before we go. So we'll be eating cereal for breakfast, sandwiches for lunch and then a hot dinner at a restaurant.

    That bring the total up to $1810+ spending money

    We've looked at each place we're going, found admission costs and that only added up to $405, 10 bucks here, 20 there really adds up.

    Now add in the cost of the houseboat rental for 3 days, 210 per person and you get $2475.

    Seeing that we each will have budgeted $3000 per person that will leave us with a little over $500 of wiggle room for souveniers and such...again everything has been overestimated in hopes that we don't run into financial trouble. We'd rather overestimate and come home with some money in our pockets than to underestimate and wind up broke that far away from home. If we do happen to break down we'd end up tapping into that $500 per person reserve which will be $4000 between all of us...

    Sorry about the long reply I'm just really excited about this trip, I could talk about it for hours! :)



    edit: Also, on the splitting up issue...we won't really have a way to do that, but at the national parks everyone will be free to go do there own thing. Hiking, swimming etc. and at the San Diego Zoo we probably won't all stay together.

    I wish there was some way to tow a trailer full of mopeds or something but this trip is expensive enough!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    10,957

    Default good plan

    I'd say your budget is pretty good.

    Fuel might end up being a little close, because I'm seeing Diesel Prices above the $3 in plenty of areas.

    Your food budget might be of more concern. Its pretty easy to spend $10-15 on a restaurant meal, so just $15 a day will likely be on the low side.

    But you seem to be in good shape everywhere else, your lodging expenses should be quite a bit lower that you are planning, and you've got a decent amount of pad.

  5. #5

    Default

    I think the fuel prices should be alright after all, we're probably gonna end up driving 3 to 4 thousand miles less than what our "estimate" is so it should all work out.

    And whoever edited my links and made them hyperlinks is totally awesome, I don't know how to do that so it's very much appreciated I'm sure it makes it easier to read that way

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    9,503

    Default National Parks could be a problem

    Quote Originally Posted by 48statebus View Post
    again we think that we've over estimated the cost of rv camping in a national park.
    I doubt that you will be able find a national park campground that can accomodate a former bus-nee-RV. Here is some information about other types of campgrounds and here is some information about boondocking.
    So we'll be eating cereal for breakfast, sandwiches for lunch and then a hot dinner at a restaurant.
    The size of your ride is going to make that plan difficult -- you will need to be able to prepare most of your meals, including dinner.
    Seeing that we each will have budgeted $3000 per person that will leave us with a little over $500 of wiggle room for souveniers and such...again everything has been overestimated in hopes that we don't run into financial trouble.
    The $3000 per person is about right -- but I don't think you really have sufficient funds in the bus repair fund unless one of the eight adventurers is also a heavy engine mechanic.
    Also, on the splitting up issue...we won't really have a way to do that
    Well, you still might have everyone take this quiz and ensure that all eight of you are envisioning the same kind of roadtrip!

    Mark
    Last edited by AZBuck; 06-15-2007 at 03:48 PM. Reason: Added link for RV limits in National Parks

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Editor View Post
    I doubt that you will be able find a national park campground that can accomodate a former bus-nee-RV. Mark
    I'm not sure I understand why they wouldn't be able to accomodate us? We just need an electrical outlet to plug into. Our bus is no larger than most RVs' and is certified on the title as an RV....?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2000
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    9,503

    Default Most have a size limit

    Quote Originally Posted by 48statebus View Post
    I'm not sure I understand why they wouldn't be able to accomodate us?
    I would bet that the length of your rig is at least 48 feet and most national park campgrounds limit the RV to 35 feet, some are 32 feet.

    But you need to do your own research -- check each park's campground information -- it is listed on the NPS site.

    Mark

  9. #9

    Default 48statebus part 2 (we leave in 38 days!)

    A LOT has changed, for starters diesel went from $2.75 to $4.00/gallon...plus we had 4 people bail on our little trip. So we've had to drastically change the make up of the 48state/48 days road trip. Below is a list of all the days and dates for the trip and some of our reserved activities are in there too!

    Day 0 May 8th Thursday: Leave Pensacola, Fl at about 7pm…drive through the night

    Day 1 May 9th Friday: drive all day, Memphis by lunch get to St. Louis by night time

    Day 2 May 10th Saturday: St. Louis all day, drive to Tulsa, OK by night time

    Day 3 May 11th Sunday: All day along Rt. 66, spend the night near Mesa Verde state park

    Day 4 May 12th Monday: spend some time at Mesa Verde State
    Park and get to 4 corners monument by 4pm local time….get to the Grand Canyon at night*****campsite already reserved******

    Day 5 May 13th Tuesday: wake up at 3am to hike the Grand Canyon, get back to the rim by nightfall…drive to Hoover Dam sleep near there

    Day 6 May 14th Wednesday: Hoover Dam tour in the morning…Vegas the rest of the day and Cirque de Soleil "Zumanity" at 10:30 at night

    Day 7 May 15th Thursday: Las Vegas all day

    Day 8 May 16th Friday: Leave Vegas til noon…drive to San Diego****Apartment reserved, staying with a friend****

    Day 9 May 17tth Saturday: San Diego****Apartment reserved, staying with a friend****


    Day 10 May 18th Sunday: San Diego all day…then drive to Los Angeles******Staying the night at a different Friend's house*****

    Day 11 May 19th Monday: Los Angeles******staying with friend #2 again*******

    Day 12 May 20th Tuesday: Los Angeles*****staying with friend #2 again*******

    Day 13 May 21st Wednesday: Six Flags Magic Mountain all day…drive to Yosemite that night****Campsite already reserved****

    Day 14 May 22nd Thursday: Yosemite****Campsite already reserved****

    Day 15 May 23rd Friday: Yosemite****Campsite already reserved*****

    Day 16 May 24th Saturday: Skydive Monterey Bay…continue to drive to SF, sleep near SF

    Day 17 May 25th Sunday: San Francisco all day, Night Tour of Alcatraz reserved

    Day 18 May 26th Monday: Driving hwy 101 to Crater Lake

    Day 19 May 27th Tuesday: Crater Lake

    Day 20 May 28th Wednesday: Driving to Mt. Rainier

    Day 21 May 29th Thursday: Mt. Rainier

    Day 22 May 30th Friday: Seattle, dinner at the top of the Space Needle

    Day 23 May 31st Saturday: Long days drive to Yellowstone****Campsite already reserved*******

    Day 24 June 1st Sunday: Yellowstone*****Campsite already reserved*****

    Day 25 June 2nd Monday: Yellowstone****Campsite already reserved*****

    Day 26 June 3rd Tuesday: Leave Yellowstone, drive to Custer State park*****Campsite already reserved*****

    Day 27 June 4th Wednesday: Mt. Rushmore/Crazy Horse
    Memorial….then drive almost all the way to Mall of America

    Day 28 June 5th Thursday: Finish driving to Mall of America

    Day 29 June 6th Friday: Mall of America

    Day 30 June 7th Saturday: leave Mall of America, stop in Milwaukee…then drive to Chicago

    Day 31 June 8th Sunday: Chicago

    Day 32 June 9th Monday: Drive to Cleveland…. Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

    Day 33 June 10th Tuesday: Drive to Niagara Falls….Maid of the Mist tour…maybe cross into Canada

    Day 34 June 11th Wednesday: Drive to Adirondack state park****Campsite already reserved*****

    Day 35 June 12th Thursday: Whitewater rafting Adirondack state park****Campsite already reserved******

    Day 36 June 13th Friday: Leave Adirondack, Lobster lunch in Maine, then eat dinner at the Cheers bar in Boston

    Day 37 June 14th Saturday: drive to NYC, first night in NYC hotel****Hotel already reserved*****

    Day 38 June 15th Sunday: NYC****Hotel already reserved****

    Day 39 June 16th Monday: NYC****Hotel already reserved**** Avenue Q tickets already bought

    Day 40 June 17th Tuesday: NYC****Hotel already reserved****

    Day 41 June 18th Wednesday: Six Flags New Jersey all day

    Day 42 June 19th Thursday: Hershey Park all day

    Day 43 June 20th Friday: Philadelphia all day

    Day 44 June 21st Saturday: Drive to Washington DC****Campsite already reserved******

    Day 45 June 22nd Sunday: Washington DC******Campsite already reserved********

    Day 46 June 23rd Monday: Washington DC*****Campsite already reserved******

    Day 47 June 24th Tuesday: Leave Washington DC, sleep in Latta, SC*****Grandparents house already reserved****

    Day 48 June 25th Wednesday: Leave Latta early, spend the afternoon in Atlanta, GA…and then finally head home ****Finally sleep in our own beds******


    The first 2.5 days are pretty hectic but other than that we really should only have 1 other crazy day and that would be the Yellowstone to Mall of America day which is going to take ALL day...
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 03-31-2008 at 10:44 PM.

  10. #10

    Default

    As a few of you probably remember me and 3 friends were organizing a 48 state/48 day roadtrip around the USA. I got back from the trip about a month and a half ago but I'm just now getting around to posting pics for you guys.

    We left on the night of May 8th, and drove through the night....and then 48 days later we returned home to Panama City Beach, Florida with 12,500 mileson the car and 2 less people on the trip:)

    So here are some pics and 2 links to youtube videos I made...ask all the questions you want and I'll try to answer them all for you.

    The night we left...

    Crawling underneath an unlocked bridge at the Arkansas state border

    The St. Louis Arch


    Route 66


    Mesa Verde



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