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  1. Default Miami-SF. Whats the timeframe???

    Hello fellow roadtrippers..
    First of all. Thanks for finally finding a great forum with helpful members..

    We're a norwegian couple who wants to make a roadtrip next spring... (a year ahead?!?!? I know...) And before we start to plan this to serious, we want to know if we're beeing totaly lost in dreaming here..

    Because of kids and trouble with long time babysitting, I dont think we have more than about 14 days from arriving til heading back home.. (Maybe we'll squeese in a couple of days or three).
    And before I get on, I have to say that we dont mind killing long average distances daily. We're used to long trips, and we're lovin' it..

    Here we go.. Our dream is to start in Miami, get a glimpse of the everglades. follow south til New Orleans, and hit on to the 66 around Texas.. The canyons, Vegas are on the list, and LA as our destination.. (If possible even squeese in SF?).
    Dear people. We ask you.. Can it be done???? or do we have to find a way to ease grandma the babysitter to buy us some extra days?

    Well. Hope you have some reasonable tips for us. We really want to make this happen..
    And folks.. The trip is the journey.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Keithville, LA

    Default A couple of questions

    Is this roundtrip or one way? If it's one way then you definitely have time to do it all. You won't be able to stop and spend a day in Vegas or a couple of nights in New Orleans, but you can physically do all those things. The total trip if you drove straight from Miami to Los Angeles is around 2700 miles. Not too bad. I'd add at least another 1500 miles for all the side trips you're think about just to be on the safe side.

    This is my story of a trip I took over the summer. I accomplished 4100 miles in 10 days. I don't like to stay in one place too long and tend to go a little crazy when out on the road. But I think this will give you an idea of the pace you'll have to maintain to accomplish your trip.

    However, there are several things to think about. It's more expensive to fly into one airport and fly out of another one. The same applies for car rentals. If that's an issue and you have to start and stop in the same location, then that really puts a damper on things.

    We're a norwegian couple who wants to make a roadtrip next spring... (a year ahead?!?!? I know...) And before we start to plan this to serious, we want to know if we're beeing totaly lost in dreaming here..
    We love to see people planning ahead. And the dreaming about of trip is one of the best parts of the trip.

    Also - check on adding Natchitoches, LA and the Cane River Heritage Areato your trip. It could be on your way when heading from New Orleans to the panhandle of Texas to catch part of route 66. Natchitoches is as old as New Orleans, smaller, more clean, and it's a couple hundred miles inland. It's kind of like what New Orleans would have been like in another era.

    It's also surrounded by forts as well as the plantations. There is an old French Fort in Natchitoches, a Spanish fort in Robeline, LA and an American Fort in Many, LA. Granted none of them have been used in well over 100 years, but it's kind of neat to think that that areas was once a heavily contested international border.


  3. Default

    Thanks for great response laura!!!
    I'm eating tips and advices like candy over here!!!

    It's a one way trip, so I'm glad to hear your thoughts that this is realistic.
    We have a huge US map hanging in our office, and we are filling it with pushpins every day, as new ideas and sights pops into our minds. from there we just have to come up with a route that fits our wishes and timeframe..

    We really want to dig in on both modern and historical sites, so every tip and web link is more than welcome..

    When it comes to car rental.. Book ahead, or search the area for great deals when we arrive?
    And is GPS usually included in rentals??

    I'll cry out questions here if any more will come up, and I believe there will be thousands..

    And by the way. If the guys in of the mighty clutch is on the road, I don't care how far the detour is. I gotta se them in their homecountry...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Keithville, LA

    Default Booking ahead

    I'd book the car ahead of time, personally. You need to make sure that you find a company that will let you pick it up in one spot and drop it off in another and check on mileage limits. Also you can specify the GPS system. I think most rental cars have it now, but I'm not sure. I haven't actually rented a car in several years and don't use a GPS so it hasn't come up.

    And by the way. If the guys in of the mighty clutch is on the road, I don't care how far the detour is. I gotta se them in their homecountry...
    Apparently this is someone I don't know about. Can you fill me in?


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default Relax, You've Got Lots of Time


    I make your one-way journey to be about 3,750 miles (6,000 km), including the Everglades, New Orleans, the Grand Canyon, Las Vegas, San Francisco and Los Angeles. So with 14 day you can actually relax and spend some time at places along the way. Note that Laura's trip was 4,100 (more) miles in 10 (fewer) days. Here's the tale of one I took that was 7,250 miles in 16 days. Yours is downright leisurely by comparison. Look into adding Baton Rouge and Natchez after New Orleans, Taos and Santa Fe in New Mexico, the Painted Desert and Petrified Forest in Arizona, and Death Valley, Yosemite and the Pacific Coast Highway in California. You probably can't fit them all in, but that doesn't mean that any of them is not worthy in its own right. Just pick the ones that suit you best.


  6. Default

    You guys are awsome!!
    I thougt I'd just throw in a post here and check back in a week or so.. But you guys are just right down to it!!!! If this is the spirit we can expect during the trip, then no worries!!!!

    I'm eased to hear that time isn't our biggest challenge, but picking destinations.. Some of these places mentioned are already pushpins on our map, others isn't, so that'll definately call for some surfing on the web. We want to feel the authentic spirit of the places we visits, so
    Thanks again!!!

    And Laura.. I don't know what kinda music your'e into, but this is the rock'n'roll bible.
    Clutch. The worlds most underratet band ever!!! for a little taste, check here.
    Can I expect to find this kind of place along the road? :)
    and this one, beautiful bluesrock with southern style influences:

    I've driven from norway to france in one day just to see them, so, yes.. I'm a roadtripper...

    and velkommen??? do I smell norwegian influences here?? A lot of norwegian emigrants up north from the earlier days, i reacon.. (There's a funny trend here in Norway... When hollywood stars and other famous americans are appearing in media, reporters always has a great ability to dig up this persons history waaay back, and of course.. their grand grand grand mother was norwegian. :) )
    Last edited by AZBuck; 04-10-2008 at 03:46 PM. Reason: Preferred URL format

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default How Many 'Grand's in 1068 Years?

    No joke: As I have mentioned elsewhere on these forums, I am of Norman English descent. As near as we can tell, my forebearers went from Norway to France in 940 AD with Rollo Thorfinn, to England in 1066 with William, and finally to America in 1637.


  8. Default

    That's some impressive family research!!
    well. Maybe the vikingblood running in our veins is the cause of our urge to explore...

    We are more into plannong now, and we have a few questions, and hope that maybe you guys can help us out..

    If we go for an average mid-range standard during the trip (some cheap motels along the way, and maybe some a little more desent rooms in the major cities), what do you think our daily budget (as a couple) on accomodation would be?
    100? 150?

    Car rental.. It turns out that we might get company of another couple, but anyway. If 'we're alone we would like a big car with lots of space. Does anyone have an estimated price on a car that would fit this trip, inluding insuranse and extra driver? And if you have a link to a car rental company with a good reputation, that would be great..

    Mexican food.. Where do I get the best, most authentic mexican along the way?? :)

    this trip will take place late may / early june.. If we pick our timing right, can we expect to come across some good festivals / annual happenings / parades matching our route??

    May / june.. Will the heat kill me in the desert areas at these times of year? And is it places you can stop to cool off in a scenic river or lake or something along this trip? Is sedona a place like this, and worth seeing?

  9. Default Random comments...

    If I may chime in...

    Average Mid-Range hotels/ motels -- If you're not staying in the middle of a big city (where the hotels always seem to be more expensive), my experience is you can usually get good, but not fancy, hotels for 2 people for about $80. Budget $100, and you should be fine. These are usually small to medicum sized motels from a variety of chains.

    Car Rentals -- your best bet for sizes and prices would be to check the web sites of several of the major national chains. All have a pretty good reputation, and include some assistance along the way in case you run into car trouble. These are companies like Hertz, Avis, National, Budget, Enterprise, setc. They should have a menu that should allow you to price different sized car options. Check to see if they have a drop off charge, and if your home car insurance covers rentals in the US (else you may have to take a daily insurance cost as well -- a few bucks, but it adds up.). Some organizations have a discount option with some (or all) of them; for example the UK's equivalent of the AAA used to have a small discount option.

    Mexican food -- *Grins* What type of Mexican food do you want? Mexico is a large country, with tall mountains, beaches and bordering on 2 oceans. There are numerous regional Mexican cusines -- and you can get several along the way I'm sure. I'd recommend a couple -- going through Texas, you want to get Tex/Mex cooking. Lots of beef, chiles (the stew) and pretty good. There's also Mexican seafood down along the gulf coast -- shrimp, fish and the like. Very good. In New Mexico there's "New Mexican" style -- blue corn, very spicy, black beans, and very good. In Arizona/ California its more Sonoran style -- enchildas, refried beans, tacos and the like. Although like everywhere else, you can look around and find different varities based upon who's going the cooking. If I had to pick a spot, I'd pick a smaller mom & pop style mexican restaurant instead of a chain, and just pick a place that's clean and not empty. I've seldom been disappointed...

    Heat along the way in May/ June. Yeah it can be warm, at different places along the trip. Through the south and along the gulf it *can* be hot and humid. In the desert southwest, it may be in the 90's. Make sure you have sun protection and drink *lots* of water. And I mean liters per day... It won't "kill" you since most of the standard stops along the way are air conditioned inside, but if you're not used to it or familiar with dealing with it, it can surprize visitors. Tens of Millions of people live and work in this heat year around, so its very doable to visit and do activities, but take a note from the locals, if it's very hot. (It may just be very nice weather too..)

    If you're looking to add some historical and modern places to stop.. just for grins I'd throw into a random list (and this is just for about 3 states in the southwest...)

    - Santa Fe, old historical capital of New Mexico
    - Glorita Pass, on the Santa Fe Trail, east of Santa Fe. This has been called the "Gettysburg of the West", and was where the Union and Confederate Troops fought for control of New Mexico. Union won, Confederates retreated down the Rio Grand River and back to Texas.
    - Albuquerque, with the Old Town plaza and its places to wander around.
    - Gallup NM is the largest town near the Navaho Nation. This is one of the best places in my opinion to look for excellent Navaho silver work, turqouise jewelry and textiles
    - Indian Pueblos -- you've got to visit one, Hopi or Zuni or Pueblo. Several to chose from.
    - Some amazing potential scenery stops -- Canyon De Chelly, Monument Valley, etc. All this before the Grand Canyon.
    - Petrified Forest/ Painted Desert
    - Meteor Crater
    - Winslow Arizona as in "Standing on the corner in Winsolow Arizona..."
    - Grand Canyon
    - Hoover Dam
    - Las Vegas
    - Mojave National Preserve
    - Kelso Dunes
    - Amboy Crater
    - Harvey house in Barstow California
    and at this point you're coming into LA...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Keithville, LA

    Default Food

    I always ask the locals and/or the hotel staff where I'm staying. I've found some wonderful food that way and some restaurants that just defy logic (who builds a hamburger joint/auto dealership?). But I've never gotten bad food that way. Just have the tums ready and be up for an adventure. I never would have thought that the Honduran version of Mexican food that I ate in Raton, New Mexico would have gone into my book of places to try to find again.

    Weather - it will be hot and humid that time of year on the gulf coast. Especially as you get into late May. It's not the hottest time of the year, but you will see temperatures mostly in the low 90s with a fair amount of humidity. But the breezes should still be cool, so it's not too bad. I have to reiterate drinking water, though. It helps a great deal.


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