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WooHoo

A Long Long Drive

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I am spending the winter in Sarasota ( I come from Scotland) and as invited to spend Christmas with some good friends in Salisbury NC. I asked how long it would be to make the trip thinking they would say two days. They said around 10 hours. WhenI asked others I was amazed to find drining 700 miles in one go was the norm and not the exception.

As it turns out it took ten and a half hours (including fuels stops) and I know that there must be bigger trips done solo. So I want to find the longest non stop trip taken teo categories.
Distance travelled in one continious journey., and
Longest time spend behind the wheel?

Let the bragging begin.

Also if any skydivers in the Sarasota area, would like to hook up for a beer let me know as I am here until the end of April and don't know may folks in the area.

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When I drove from Whitehorse, Yukon to Vancouver, BC I usually stopped to rest in Fort. St. John, BC. That was about 900 miles. I found that much driving tired me out, especially since most of it was not paved. The mountain passes were usually in hmmm challenging condition. The 800 or so miles the next day were usually a breeze.

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Before college, one of my past lives was driving tractor trailers cross-country. I remember once driving from Grand Island, Nebraska to some truck stop in Pennsylvania. About 1200 miles, w/an anemic fleet vehicle, pulling 80K#s against a headwind for much of the way. Oh yeah, & taking back roads through Ohio because the company was too damn cheap to pay the tolls... I don't remember how many hours it took. I dutifully filled in the first eight hours in logbook #1. Then, the next eight in logbook #2. Finally going back to #1 for the remainder. Twas a looong day. You want reverse stories, too? I once had to back up for 2.5 miles on back roads at night trying to beat those same tolls. They closed the [email protected]#^ing bridge, but didn't post it 2.5 miles up the road where everyone turned off for it.

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When I was much younger and much dumber, I was visiting friends in Pensacola Fl. The last night there, I was physically drug out to the clubs and got back at 6am totally shit-faced. I slept for 2 hours and got up still shit-faced and drove non-stop to Reston, Va. I was rushed because this was Christmas Eve and I had to be back to open presents with my GF's family at 4am. This was back when the maximum speed limit was 55 mph. I drove it straight through, stopping only for gas and while the pump was running, I went in and bought coffee. I made it back around 3:30 am. I did take a couple of dexedrines to help take the edge off the massive hangover I had all the way back.

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Well since I don't drive semi anymore I can tell of my illegal trip of 1585 miles in a 24 hour period. I picked up produce from 2 different farms and drove from Homestead Florida to Dallas TX. I was beat! But I made some good money for 24 hours then I was visiting relatives in Dallas for the weekend.
If you find yourself in a fair fight, your tactics suck!

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Trip to a boat race at Lk. Havasu, AZ in 1979. One leg of the trip was Baton Rouge, LA to El Paso, TX. I intended to spend the night in San Antonio but it was still early when I got there so I decided to go on to the next stop. There wasn't a whole lot of stopping places between San Antonio and El Paso. Before that I made a non-stop trip from central Illinois to Tampa. Since then I haven't made any one day driving trips longer than 400-500 miles.

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April, 2000.
Solo trip.
Coast to coast in 4 days, 3,300 miles and change. Sacramento to Nashua, New Hampshire in a disintegrating '83 AMC Eagle with no speedometer, missing rear glass covered in plastic and tape, and a broken rear shock.

Rough trip. I got no more than 4 hours sleep till halfway across Pennsylvania.
The rear diff leaked dry, I figured out what the squeaking sound was 700 miles out of Cali in the middle of Nowhere, Wyoming. Fortunately I had some gear oil aboard and I refilled it in time to prevent the gears coming apart but I never trusted that axle again.

Later near Des Moines the rear main seal let go on the engine, started making enormous cloud of oilsmoke every time I slowed down, lost about a quart every 50 miles, mostly onto the exhaust system.

To avoid becoming an interstate fireball I pulled the check valve and sealed the crankcase breather, thus causing the intake to put the whole inside of the engine under significant vacuum, slurping air in through the oil leak and stopping the oil loss. Then continued the drive.

Finally somewhere in Illinois I lost the headlights due to old age short circuit and made the remainder of the trip on parking lights and the offroad lights I had all over the thing.

Now THATS traveling.
-B
Live and learn... or die, and teach by example.

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OTR drivers routinely drive coast to coast in four days (& less ;)). What makes this remarkable, is that you did it in an AMC :o! Those things were HORRIBLE. You might've been able to wrangle a new one out of them for the positive publicity of your trip (w/some omissions). The new one probably wouldn't have run any better though, anyway... Congrats on a good memory.

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I go back and forth from Omaha, NE to Laurel, MS a couple times a year and its usually 16 hours with fuel stops only. Done it several times through, but bad weather one trip made it closer to 19 hrs.

Thats the most I've done and its really not that bad until about the last 4 hours, then I about go crazy, and almost start seeing things. The last few times I've done it though I do it in two days because I bring the wife and dog. If its just me, I go straight through with the help of one well timed 5 hr energy. More than one of those is dangerous.



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Certainly not bragging, just amazed at my energy back then...

Made the haul solo from Vernon, BC to Eloy, AZ with only fuel/pee stops a number of times. Three round-trippers in just one winter. Grand Cherokee, Sirius Radio, cruise-control, 1610 miles (fastest via central NV and using the Vegas & Phoenix bypass routes). Computer said the ignition was running a total of 23.75 hours. Usually it took about 26.5 hours total clock-time. And it was definitely winter in WA & OR in the passes. And a fair share of speeding tickets in ID and NV, but the Troopers were way cool.

Really, really, really dumb.

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The longest drive I have ever made was from Denver Colorado to the Alberta/Montana border at Sweetgrass MT (which took about 16 hours if memory serves me correct) where I applied for a new TN-1 work visa and immediately turned around and headed back towards Colorado. I didn't make it back to Denver in one stop. I made it to Billings MT where I slept for a few hours before completing the trip back to CO the next day. I believe I drove about 22+ hours straight that day, not counting the 30 minutes I spent at the border getting the new work visa. Ha ha ... I had NHL hockey tickets for a Saturday night Avs hockey game and NFL football tickets for a Broncos game on Sunday, hence the need to make the trip up to Canada and back to Colorado as fast as possible. But in my last years in Colorado myself and some friends made almost weekly trips from Denver to Twin Falls Idaho and back to jump at the Perrine Bridge. Not easy to do, but definitely worth the 14 hour drive each way to jump that bridge. :)



Try not to worry about the things you have no control over

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From Roscoe, South Dakota, to college in Houston 1300 miles non-stop several times, in a car and even on a motorcycle.

Then just a couple years ago I rode a motorcycle again 800 miles from Louisville, Ky to the Hudson Valley of New York, non-stop.
"For you see, an airplane is an airplane. A landing area is a landing area. But a dropzone... a dropzone is the people."

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3 trips come to mind.

1 - Non-stop, Phoenix to St Cloud MN.

2 - Non-stop, New Orleans to Chicago, much of the return trip in a nasty freezing rainstorm, returning from Mardi Gras.

3 - Many, many stops; St Cloud to New Orleans; then back 3 days later. Mardi Gras again.

However, none qualify as the 1st two were with a partner taking turns driving, and #3 was hitchhiked both ways. Grueling, but memorable for the fun and adventure of all 3 trips.

Solo? Drove between St Cloud & Chicago so many times while in colege I can still recognize most of the exits. It's only about 500 miles but it became as casual for me as a lazy afternoon drive.
" . . . the lust for power can be just as completely satisfied by suggesting people into loving their servitude as by flogging them and kicking them into obedience." -- Aldous Huxley

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