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  1. #1

    Default Need Help! Raleigh, NC to San Francisco, Ca

    Hello, and thank you in advance for your time.

    I am planning a cross country road trip that I will taking next Wednesday 4/21/21 from Raleigh, NC to San Francisco, CA. I am finally getting to move the love of my love home to wine country so we can live together and have our forever happiness!

    I am looking for to plan a route that highlights some of the “worlds biggest” items, and other quirky roadside attractions along the way. Taking pictures at the road signs as we enter each state along the way. We don’t have any particular places we want to see aside from the Grand Canyon for some beautiful views, maybe Graceland. New Orleans?

    We have never done a long distance road trip like this, and we could use all the help we can get in planning a memorable trip of a lifetime! Seeing many places that we would otherwise never have a chance to see.

    I am flying out there on Wednesday 4/21/21 and we are driving back kinda as fast as we can, while still maximizing our experience. I’m trying to be back in California on Sunday evening 4/25/21 so I can make it to work Monday. But if I need to take more time off work, I should be able to swing it.

    ThNk you all for your help, and I greatly appreciate this forum for all the help it has already provided me!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    10,089

    Default

    Welcome to RTA!

    You are not allocating enough time for this trip, even before considering sightseeing. This drive would take 5 full days with no diversions, taking I-40/CA-58/I-5.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    10,070

    Default No

    Welcome Aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    There is no way that you can safely drive from Raleigh to San Francisco in four days. Period. Having two drivers (if you in fact do) is no help. You would still have to cover over 700 miles a day. No! Not possible. And that's before you add in any detours to New Orleans or the Grand Canyon or anywhere else, let alone stopping at 'The World's Biggest' anything. Find at least another day if you want to make this trip at all.

    AZBuck

  4. #4

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by AZBuck View Post
    Welcome Aboard the RoadTrip America Forums!

    There is no way that you can safely drive from Raleigh to San Francisco in four days. Period. Having two drivers (if you in fact do) is no help. You would still have to cover over 700 miles a day. No! Not possible. And that's before you add in any detours to New Orleans or the Grand Canyon or anywhere else, let alone stopping at 'The World's Biggest' anything. Find at least another day if you want to make this trip at all.

    AZBuck
    Thank you for your reply! I do have another driver that will help drive. And I am not opposed to adding needed time for sightseeing. Thank you for your help!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    11,640

    Default

    It's not a case of adding time to sightsee, you need to add time purely to do the drive safely. So how much time are you prepared, or able to take to make it an enjoyable and safe experience. To get your "Forever happiness" you first of all need to get there safely, which is something we all want.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    5,620

    Default

    I'm going to chime in with a "they're correct!" here. Raleigh to SF is 2840 miles, give or take a few on each end depending on exactly where you're starting/ending. That equates to about 5-1/2 days on the road without sightseeing.

    A commercial driver is limited to 600 miles or 10 hours on the road per day, whichever is less. Then they must take a mandatory 8 hours off - any time sitting in the front of the cab is like driving - they must be in the back of the cab (if they have a driving partner) or (if solo) must pull over and sleep (or at least get off the road and rest!). That's why you may see truckers in rest areas, pulled over on the sides of exits, or even along the freeway in huge wide spots put there for just that purpose.

    My husband is an ex-trucker. We follow that guideline, for the most part. We find that pushing it much past that 600 mile mark means we're extra tired, which is not a good thing to be on the road. If you are a beginner, you should keep it to 500-550 miles per day. Those miles are ONLY for days when you aren't stopping to sightsee. If you want to stop and see something, you add more time.

    Another hold up that Google Maps and the like don't always take much into consideration, is construction. I just came down I-40 in the past 2 weeks. There was horrible construction westbound on 40 west of Albuquerque all the way to the NM/AZ state line. We were going eastbound and saw lines and lines of traffic going the other way - no accidents, just construction delays. (We went home via another route to avoid being part of that!)

    Grand Canyon is experiencing horrific delays at the one and only Rim entrance that is open at this time. The South Rim entrance at Tusayan is open - the eastern entrance to the South Rim is closed down. You have to allow for that, plus time to try to park, catch the shuttle bus to see various viewpoints. Call it at least a full day.

    I can't think of any "world's biggest" along the I-40. There are three things in the Panhandle of Texas along I-40. One is the giant cross at Groom. Another would be Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo. Bear in mind that this is in the midst of a construction area. If you like western flavor and steak, Big Texan in Amarillo is good for a lunch or dinner. It's actually easier to approach from the east, I'm told. Here is a discussion of the Big Texan rules for the 72 oz steak that you will see on billboards approaching Amarillo.

    I'd really give serious consideration to extending your westbound trip by at least 3 days, if you want to fit your dreams in, not to mention the safety that others have mentioned.


    Donna

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    10,089

    Default

    Donna - the Grand Canyon East Entrance reopened April 8.

  8. #8

    Default

    If you or the special one in your life is dying then my heart goes out to you. Just no need to speed up the process in attempting to make a cross-country dash. Assuming you are reasonably youthful, as you are still working, you and your loved one will find plenty of opportunities in the future to see the grand ol' USA. Be careful and mindful along the way.

  9. Default

    2800 miles could take you 56 hours of driving, not the 40 that travel apps will tell you.

    Almost immediately, you’ll be falling “behind schedule” as you are delayed by traffic, accidents, construction, lowered speed limits in cities, and stops for gas, food, restrooms etc. I always plan on AVERAGING 50mph even though I might be driving 75 or 80. (Where legally posted). I usually beat that average but seldom beat 60.

    In your situation, you’ll be constantly falling behind and will suffer from a severe case of “hurryupitis” which is unfortunatey sometimes fatal.

    You need to drastically change your plans to safely make it there with NO side trips.

  10. #10

    Default

    Thank you all for your help in this matter! We have decided to change up our plans. Given all your wonderful input, and factoring in all associated costs, we found a vehicle shipping quote for a cheaper amount. So we decided to ship the vehicle and change the one way flight to her one way flight to SF.

    She still has family in Raleigh that she will want to visit, so we will have another opportunity to pace ourselves on a cross country road trip. This time we’ll have the opportunity to do a round trip road trip! So I can only hope that means we could maybe see two different routes each way!

    Thank you all again for your wonderful help. And I will certainly turn to you again when I need some experts!

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