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  1. #1

    Default LA - Washington DC next June/July. Please look if my route is okay

    Hi all,

    I've been reading a lot of posts on this site but can't really find any recent LA to east coast threads.

    I have created a rough route and would love some feedback as to what I should change. It looks good to me, but what do I know!?

    This will be my third road trip in the USA, first time coast to coast. The reason for the route is I'd like to chase some storms during the journey!

    One way car hire has been sorted.

    DAY FROM TO
    1 Home Los Angeles
    2 Los Angeles
    3 Los Angeles Las Vegas
    4 Las Vegas Bryce
    5 Bryce Torrey
    6 Torrey Moab
    7 Moab
    8 Moab Grand Junction
    9 Grand Junction Denver
    10 Denver Fort Collins
    11 Fort Collins Custer
    12 Custer
    13 Custer
    14 Custer
    15 Custer Mitchell
    16 Mitchell Sioux City
    17 Sioux City Omaha
    18 Omaha
    19 Omaha Kansas City
    20 Kansas City
    21 Kansas City St Louis
    22 St Louis
    23 St Louis Indianapolis
    24 Indianapolis
    25 Indianapolis Columbus
    26 Columbus
    27 Columbus Pittsburgh
    28 Pittsburgh Lancaster
    29 Lancaster Philadelphia
    30 Philadelphia Washington DC
    31 Washington DC
    32 Washington DC
    33 Washington DC

    APOLOGIES for the bad formatting, it looks fine when I type the post but it all squeezes together for some reason :(
    Last edited by jarz85; 06-07-2015 at 07:41 PM. Reason: Formatting

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Looks good.

    Welcome back.

    The trip laid out above shows you have put your experience from your last trips into practice. Do you per chance have an atlas or some maps taken home from your previous trips? That would be a great help. I have not checked the distances between your destination, but at first glance it looks good. I'd be inclined to drop the car when you get to DC. It is a place where a car is really not needed. Good public transport goes to all the attractions, parking is hard to find and expensive.

    If you have the ability to order storms on command, I am sure that your talents will be highly valued. Suffice to say, the chances of actually coming upon a storm are rare indeed. I have often heard the warnings on the radio, as I travelled across country, but have never really seen a storm. Not that I would head into it. I value my life.

    Lifey

    Edit: Are you aware that your South Australian automobile club membership gives you access to free tourist information and maps from the AAA, all across the US? I make good use of it every trip. Nothing like having good maps with many of the attractions and all the options for routes on them.
    Last edited by Lifemagician; 06-07-2015 at 08:51 PM. Reason: add information.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,545

    Default

    In that time frame, you probably have a good chance of chasing one storm. Late last June, we were approaching Indianapolis when our cell phones went off -- we had driven past a tornado and didn't even know it.

    Looking at your itinerary, nothing jumps out at me as being too long a drive for one day. Just the opposite, as a matter of fact -- we've routinely driven from St Louis to Columbus OH in one day. However, it's a more relaxed trip when you're not trying to push 600 in a day.

    Other than Bryce, Canyonlands and Arches and storm chasing, is there a focus for your trip? You're passing by some very historical and beautiful areas, which is why I ask.


    Donna

  4. #4

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Lifemagician View Post
    Edit: Are you aware that your South Australian automobile club membership gives you access to free tourist information and maps from the AAA, all across the US? I make good use of it every trip. Nothing like having good maps with many of the attractions and all the options for routes on them.
    For reals!? On my last trip I paid for maps whilst in the USA.... I will definitely look in to this! As for the storm chasing side of things, we are starting or trip in the first week of June so I am quietly confident I will see something!

  5. #5

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DonnaR57 View Post
    In that time frame, you probably have a good chance of chasing one storm. Late last June, we were approaching Indianapolis when our cell phones went off -- we had driven past a tornado and didn't even know it.

    Looking at your itinerary, nothing jumps out at me as being too long a drive for one day. Just the opposite, as a matter of fact -- we've routinely driven from St Louis to Columbus OH in one day. However, it's a more relaxed trip when you're not trying to push 600 in a day.

    Other than Bryce, Canyonlands and Arches and storm chasing, is there a focus for your trip? You're passing by some very historical and beautiful areas, which is why I ask.


    Donna
    Basically we have covered most of the NP's during our last two trips (Monument Valley, GC, Zion etc etc).

    We just want to drive cross country, most people thing the open Plains of the USA is boring... but we have plenty or attractions and roadside stops planned.

    I agree I could probably cut a few nights off the trip, however, I am planning on booking flexible hotel rates so if we need to stay somewhere a night longer (due to a storm :P coming in) then we can change hotels no problem

  6. #6

    Default

    US 50 goes straight from Sacramento to Ocean City, Md and passes through Washington DC. It covers some really cool areas of the country including "The Loneliest Road in America" in Nevada. Could be an interesting route for you. Just take 5 North from LA and get on 50 in Sacramento.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Maps and more

    Did you bring your maps home? That would be very useful during this planning. Each time I arrive in the US I get all my maps updated at the AAA. By the date on the back, I can tell which ones have an updated version. Then I go of and buy a Rand McNally road atlas, in which every evening I hilight each and every road on which I travelled that day. This then becomes my trip souvenir. In a couple of years time it can be difficult to remember exactly which route you took, so I like to have that record - along with my trip report. Then at each State Welcome or Visitor Centre I pick up a free State map. It is interesting how often one finds something on one map, which is not on the other two.

    US50 is a lovely route, but be aware it takes a lot longer than travelling on the interstates. I would have a good look at the maps, and interchange the old US highways (such as 50) with the interstates. On the other hand, if US50 through NV is on your route, I would highly recommend you take it. It is a great drive. Just be sure you start with a full tank.

    As for the middle of the country, over the plains, there is so much to see and do, and think about as one traverses the area, there is no time for a dull moment. Each time I cross States like Kansas I see that TV series about the dustbowl in the 30s, all over again.

    Lifey

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,545

    Default

    Basically we have covered most of the NP's during our last two trips (Monument Valley, GC, Zion etc etc).
    Did you know there are 59 national parks in the US, and 114 national monuments? It sounds like you got to many of them in the southwestern US.

    Another thought is to read up on the areas you are traversing through. On the backs of the AAA Triptik maps, they always give little blurbs about the cities or areas being passed by. If I'm carrying the AAA Tour Book for that state, I might pull that out and look up a smaller town. It does give you something to think about instead of "am I ever going to drive out of this corn/grain field?!"


    Donna
    Last edited by DonnaR57; 06-10-2015 at 06:00 AM. Reason: fixed quote html markings

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Maybe - maybe not.

    On the backs of the AAA Triptik maps, ...
    I'm not sure that tripticks are available with a foreign club membership. I always understood it was maps and tour books. But you can research all that information for yourself, anyway.

    Lifey
    Last edited by Lifemagician; 06-09-2015 at 11:44 PM.

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