Long Days on the Road

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Long Days on the Road

Long Days on the Road

There are times when you work while traveling full time that it is necessary to make long distance moves. For us this was going from the Northern California Redwoods to SW Texas. Our normal goal is about 500 miles a day. I know that the average full timer recommends 350 miles as a max but since Jim and I both drive and rarely stay at a campground when doing long distance moves we tend to drive farther. Our driving habits have evolved since we began this journey three years ago. We used to get up at the crack of dawn and drive until dark but have since adjusted to taking a little more time in the morning to enjoy our routine of drinking coffee, cooking a couple of eggs, and taking the dogs for a bit of a walk (and ourselves). This seems to help us not be as sore or cranky. We then drive in 2 1/2-3 hour shifts, stopping to walk the dogs when we trade out spots.

Related Read: Moving Day

There are a few tools we have found helpful when not staying at campgrounds and driving until dark. First is a great app for anyone who drives a diesel pusher. For us we are 42 feet plus 18 feet of trailer so getting in and out of gas stations requires a bit of driving room. We also have a 150 gallon fuel tank so prefer trucker pumps that have higher volume delivery. We started using an app called Trucker Path which not only shows us the big rig stations on our route but the most current fuel prices. We have seen as much as a .26 cent difference between two exits and when putting 100 gallons in this adds up. We also love to use Next Exit, in paperback, for figuring out where the next rest stop is. This is where we make our driver swaps and walk the pooches. When driving on back roads that do not show up on Next Exit we usually rely on Google Maps with satellite view and will start searching overhead for good pull offs.

Another important thing to do while moving is to watch the weather both where you are going to be short term and the upcoming days. We have adjusted when we left a park and how long wedrove a day around weather systems that would be adverse to drive thru. For our CA to TX trip we had to dodge rain, thunderstorms, and ice storms. We had hoped to take a day to explore the Grand Canyon but an incoming snow storm nixed that. On our second night we had pulled over for the night at 7pm but when I looked at the future cast for our trip a powerful thunderstorm system was developing and so we ended up airing back up the bags and driving an additional four hours to get us past the worst. When we got up the next morning and looked at the radar we were really glad we pushed through as there were some really strong winds and heavy rain that we dodged. I can not stress enough how important tracking weather patterns is.

For weather planning I tend to use a few tools as sometimes weathermen do not agree on future weather. One of the apps I use is Weather the Trip and another is AccuWeather. I will often google the area we hope to stop in and see what their local weathermen are predicting and then compare what everyone agrees on.

Related Read: Staying Safe When the Rain Comes Down or Weather Turns Severe

After a little over three days of hard driving we completed our 1596 mile journey and are now enjoying the beauty of Alpine TX.

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Cindy & Jim Boyd-Snethen

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Cindy & Jim Boyd-Snethen

We are living the dream! Traveling from Florida to Alaska with our two dogs in an RV, pulling our jeep. We sold our home and hit the road full time. We love to jeep, mountain bike, horseback ride, photography, kayak, hike, explore new towns, meet new people, learn new things, and live every minute of life. We still work to pay the bills but found a great job with Southeast Publications that allows us to travel and earn money at the same time. Check out our personal blog page HERE.

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