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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    San Diego, California, United States
    Posts
    4

    Default Road trip from San Diego to New Orleans

    My daughter and I and our dog are headed to New Orleans for Christmas and decided to do a road trip. I haven't done one this long since I was a kid sitting in the back seat of my folk's Buick!

    We want to drive it in 3 days, with 2 quick overnight stops. Any tips/suggestions on places to stay, places to avoid(!). I have some general ideas on where we will stop, but I'm welcoming any comments!

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,270

    Default

    Welcome!

    If you are only going to take 3 days, you don't have time for any sightseeing delays. This trip is 1800 miles and with only normal fuel, food, and bathroom stops you will be on the road for at least 12 hours a day.

    My mapping software suggests the 2 overnights be in Deming NM and San Antonio. Deming has a few affordable hotels, if you don't like the looks of them get back on the freeway and head for Las Cruces, it's about 45 minutes east. I would avoid El Paso due to the border wars, just drive on through on the freeway. If you do get off the freeway in El Paso, use the same caution as you would in San Ysidro. The only border city along your route that I feel somewhat safe in is Yuma.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default Pushing to the limit.

    It would make a big difference if you could spend the morning of day 4 to finish your trip off and get a little more time out of the vehicle on route, the dog could get real cranky without time for a proper run around. By the time you add an hour on your day in the morning to get showered and have breakfast and a couple at night to have a meal and unwind, it's going to make for long day's.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,270

    Default

    Oops - I didn't see the dog! The most affordable pet-friendly hotel chain is Motel 6. La Quinta is also pet-friendly, but more expensive (with more amenities, of course). A lot of so called "pet-friendly" hotels will charge you extra (sometimes a LOT extra) for a dog and/or take a substantial damage deposit.

    Deming, Las Cruces, and San Antonio all have Motel 6's and La Quinta's.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    San Diego, California, United States
    Posts
    4

    Default Thanks!

    I appreciate the tips. Didn't occur to me to avoid the border cities and I will definitely keep that in mind!

    We are leaving Monday night so once daylight hits we can make a few stops Tuesday before we shut down for the evening. We'll be taking turns driving so each of us can rest/sleep. Our dog is a service dog so we aren't too concerned about hotels and their dog policies. And she is used to traveling in the car as we frequently drive to San Francisco from San Diego. That's a trip of about 480 miles and we usually average 7 hrs. Of course, we won't be driving through AZ, NM and TX at the same speed we drive in CA!

    Thanks again!

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

    Default Not Recommended

    Quote Originally Posted by gia0330
    We are leaving Monday night so once daylight hits we can make a few stops Tuesday before we shut down for the evening.
    Sorry. Nope. That means you plan on being up for about 37-40 hour straight and still think that you'll be capable of operating a 2 ton mass of metal at 75+ mph scant inches from other people. Did you never read the warning labels on antihistamines and other drugs that they MAY cause drowsiness and you should not operate heavy machinery while taking them? Seriously, what makes you think you won't be bone tired, heavy lidded, and just downright zonked long before Tuesday evening? A few hours of fitful rest - It simply won't be anything you could even call a nap let alone sleep - is all you can possibly get while scrunched in a moving car. There is simply no substitute for a real night's sleep in a real (motionless) bed. Quite frankly assuming anything less will do is dangerous to yourselves and others.

    AZBuck

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    San Diego, California, United States
    Posts
    4

    Default Appreciate your concern....

    ... but before you assume anything, we plan to sleep most of Monday before we leave. I have done trips like this before - driving 500 miles at night so I can work the next morning (I am a trainer and do 6-8 hrs of classroom training).

    We plan to drive at night so we can make some touristy stops during the day before we settle down in a hotel. I can assure you that I know my limitations and pay strict attention to them.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default

    Do you do this pattern, and then continue driving another 1000+ plus miles over the next 2 days?

    There's a very big difference between doing a sprint and a marathon, and throwing off your internal clock for day one, when you've still got 2 more long hard days of driving is a recipe for a crash regardless of how well you think you know your limitations. If you were a nightshift worker, and were planning to do all of your drives at night, and sleeping during the day, that would make perfect sense, but that doesn't sound like what you are planning here at all.

    Are you planning to stop driving and just site see for a little while before going to bed after you get to the 500 mile mark? Because there is a very big difference between trying to teach a class while a little tired and operating a 2 ton machine at 70 mph while a little tired are two very different things. If you fall asleep in class, you might bore your students to death but that's about it, falling asleep while continuing to rack up miles can and does actually kill thousands of people a year. That's exactly what you'll be doing if you think you can drive all night and continue driving into the following afternoon or evening.

    And please don't tell us that you can do this because you have 2 drivers. In this case it will offer very limited help, because to do this safely, you need both people awake - to make sure the driver is staying alert and focused. The fact is that this is an 1800 mile, which is at the brink of what can be done safely in 3 days, even with 2 drivers, before you start sightseeing. Trying to do more than that is trying to find a way to "beat" nature.

    We are assuming that you are human and have some basic physical limitations (that apply to everyone, regardless of how bulletproof they think they might be after winning a few games of russian roulette), how much are you assuming you know about yourself and your own limitations?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    San Diego, California, United States
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Wow.

    Thanks to Southwest Dave and GLC for the tips. But, I think I'm done here. Was hoping for tips, not advice I would expect from my father...may he rest in peace.

    Thankfully, there are other Road Trip pages out there where posters are not as condescending or presumptuous about my knowledge and abilities when it comes to road trips and driving.

    May the road rise up to meet you, may the wind be ever at your back.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default A puzzle that's bugging me.

    It's a shame you feel that way. The advice given was offered with best intentions to help you make your drive safe and enjoyable, based on experience and backed up by statistics into the many deaths caused by driving when tired.

    The one thing that puzzles me though, is why you would "sleep most of Monday" when you could be on the road and get a normal nights sleep, rather than disrupting your sleep pattern and sleep in the day and then drive all night and next day ? As a class teacher I presume you don't do night shifts ? The only reason I can think of, is it will save you a few dollars on a Motel room. If so, I would consider what price you would put on making the trip enjoyable, and much more importantly your safety and that of your daughter and dog.

    I wish you all the best in your travels.
    Last edited by Southwest Dave; 12-20-2010 at 09:11 AM.

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