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  1. #1

    Default Driving NY to CA, question.

    Hi, I'm planning on driving to California probably this summer to participate in a race. Im 18, the longest road trip I ever took was like 3 1/2 hours down to PA with some buddies. I might have to go alone this time. Anyway if the race is on Sunday at 6 am, when should I depart? I want to get there as soon as possible and not spend a lot of cash. Also any tips would be cool.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default What kind of race is this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Juststopit View Post
    Hi, I'm planning on driving to California probably this summer to participate in a race.
    Welcome to the Great American RoadTrip Forum! You should allow a minimum of five days to drive across the country solo. Here are some speed run tips for you.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Tucson, AZ

    Default The Devil is in the Details

    Welcome aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    'New York' and 'California' are rather large targets. Jamestown to Truckee, at just over 2400 miles, all on Interstates, might take you 5 days at a sustainable pace. Plattsburg to San Diego, on the other hand is nearly 3000 miles and would take another day completely. Then of course, there's the nature of the 'race'. If you're just going as a spectator, rolling in the previous evening at 7:00 or 8:00 would be sufficient to get a good enough night's sleep to watch, but if you're a participant, particularly if it's a bicycle or foot race, then you will need to arrive a day or two beforehand to get over the effects of driving across the continent. So you should depart somewhere between Saturday morning a week and a day before the race to Tuesday morning 5 days before in order to arrive at the race at precisely 6:00 am.


  4. #4


    wow 5 days? I was thinking more like 2 or 3 at the most. A friend of mine and his gramps drive down to florida every year and he said it takes 21 hours. For me its going to be about 2500 miles. Also how much monies should I bring? My truck gets 21 mpg highway and I plan on sleeping in the truck and I think I can bring most of my food with me in a cooler and mini fridge. As to what kind of race, Soapbox Derby.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin

    Default A dose of reality

    As you mentioned, the trip you are talking about is about 2500 miles. That's not a distance you can safely do in 2-3 days.

    Your friend probably can make the trip to Florida in 21 hours of time on the road. The distance from NY to Florida is about 1100 miles, so the trip you are envisioning is 2-2.5 times longer.

    And in reality, that's what you should be planning. You need to expect to be on the road for at least 50 hours. That can't physically be done in 2 days, and there is no way that any solo traveler can safely do this in 3 days, much less someone who has never done a trip longer than 4 hours and thus doesn't known their own limitations. 50 hours means 5 consecutive 10 hours days on the road, that is still a lot of time on the road, and is about the limit for what you should try. Even there, you will likely be pretty tired once you reach your destination.

    If your race is first thing Sunday morning, you should be looking to leave your home on Tuesday morning at the latest. Seriously.

  6. #6

    Default yikes

    Well if thats how long it will take... I dont know how Im going to get 2 weeks off of work.

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