Solo Roadtrips

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by OutThere, Aug 30, 2010.

  1. OutThere macrumors 603


    Dec 19, 2002
    I'm soong going to be flying out to pick up a car, and then driving it about 1000 miles back home. I'm going to be by myself and have no firm deadline on getting back home so I'm thinking about taking a couple of detours. I've already planned two stops to visit friends along the way, and I've started thinking about bypassing some of the interstate to take back roads instead.

    I'm not the kind of person who would generally choose hours of isolation, preferring a car full of my buddies when taking a long trip—but the more I've been planning this trip the more I'm drawn to the idea of being in complete control of my own travel. Sounds liberating.

    Anyone else ever take a long haul solo drive? Thoughts?
  2. yg17 macrumors G5


    Aug 1, 2004
    St. Louis, MO
    Yes, I've done a couple lengthy solo road trips. One was from St. Louis to New Orleans and back and the other was from St. Louis to Washington, DC for a couple days, then up to Philadelphia to visit some friends, and back to St. Louis. Those were both around 1,000 miles each way give or take, and I enjoyed them. I've done road trips with others, but there's something liberating about being on your own. Going the route you want, stopping when you want, and taking your time without having to worry about anyone else complaining or needing to use the john only 20 minutes after you last stopped.
  3. latergator116 macrumors 68000


    Sep 30, 2003
    Providence, RI
    Never done a solo road trip but I was thinking of going to Quebec City from Rhode Island sometime this fall. I do prefer time to myself but I think doing so in a new city and on the road will be a whole new experience.
  4. dmr727 macrumors G3


    Dec 29, 2007
    I did something similar in college. It was 1450 miles, from Socal to Austin, done over three days. The freedom of being able to pick your route and stop when you want to is nice, but I got bored pretty quickly. Make sure you have plenty of music, and maybe get some audio books too.

    I'm not sure how old you are, but I stopped for the night at college campuses and always found a group of students to hang out/party with. That made the trip more fun.
  5. hexonxonx macrumors 601

    Jul 4, 2007
    Denver Colorado
    I've done this every vacation I have taken. I don't like spending allot of time in a place either. I spent less then 12 hours in Reno, less than 12 in Vegas, an hour in the Grand Canyon and so on. I like being on the road more than anything and having my XM radio and iPod to keep me company.

    One year, it was the first week of September, I was coming back from Arizona. Turned on 850 KOA on the radio and heard it was snowing in Denver so I took the extra long way home and enjoyed the longer ride.

    One time, I drove straight through to Vegas from Denver (left Denver at 3PM and got to Vegas at 5AM), turned around on the highway in Vegas and headed right back home. Didn't stop in Vegas. :eek: Didn't plan to. Yes I'm a strange one. :)
  6. OutThere thread starter macrumors 603


    Dec 19, 2002
    Yeah I will be loaded out with music, I've got my full library on my iPod and will buy a few new albums for variety before I leave.

    And yes, both scheduled stops are at colleges. I'm 22 and plan on visiting friends who are still in school. [​IMG]
  7. Dagless macrumors Core


    Jan 18, 2005
    Fighting to stay in the EU
    Never done one on my own, but I have been with just 1 friend. That was really good - much easier to manage than a car full of people.

    I'd just stock up on some good music, good snacks and take a fully charged up camera.
  8. macquariumguy macrumors 6502a

    Jan 7, 2002
    Sarasota FL
    I love long solo road trips! It helps to be a self-amusing personality. :)
  9. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

    May 7, 2004
    Sod off
    I used to regularly (say, 3-4 times a year) make the 740-mile trip between grad school up in upper Michigan and my folks' house back in OH, took about 12 hours and was 2/3 highway driving and the rest on two-lane roads. Did it in winter a few times too, it got really treacherous once or twice.

    I also drove to a job out in Nevada three times, that was about 2200 miles. After the second full day of driving it starts to get old unless you stop somewhere for a breather. The last time I did that drive, I did it with a partner and we went all the way, 35 hours nonstop. In the winter. NOT fun at all.

    Next spring I'm doing a 4400 mile drive homeward from Alaska, so that will be my new record-breaker. But that one won't be alone, and I think I''ll turn it into a mini-vacation and take some scenic detours.

    Buy an audio book, or save up a bunch of your favorite podcasts. ;)
  10. Mexbearpig macrumors 65816


    Dec 26, 2008
    Is it considered solo if a bunch of cop cars are chasing you? Try starting a High speed chase. That's always fun.
  11. Xavier macrumors 68030

    Mar 23, 2006
    I have been driving to school and back recently ~5 hours round trip.

    I don't like it very much. After the first hour to 2 hours I turn off music and just listen to the road and or weather.
  12. mbisson macrumors member

    Nov 19, 2006
    Just driven over 12,000 miles round the US by myself. Has been great fun meeting loads of new people along the way.
  13. jav6454 macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2007
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    As yg17 said before. Going solo is liberating. I have to confess the longest solo road trip was from New Orleans to Houston. It was a nice trip at ~600mi in total (going/coming).

    However, after I while I must admit I felt sorta lonely in the car. In any case, it went away as I started really getting into the fact that the road presented it self as an entertainment venue on its own. Weird I know, but it happens.
  14. ohaithar macrumors 6502a


    Jul 29, 2010
    Elk Grove Village, IL, USA
    The farthest I drove by myself was to the Mall of America from my apartment. ( I live in Elk Grove Village, IL) It was a pretty fun drive.
  15. FrankieTDouglas macrumors 65816

    Mar 10, 2005
    I do long roadtrips pretty frequently. In 2008, I drove from Louisiana to Maine to work at some photography workshops. Around 1800 or 1900 miles. Did it in three days... could probably do it in two if I tried. Then I drove back after the end of the summer.

    Did the same drives in 2009, too.

    Then in May of 2010, I drove 4000 miles across America and Canada on a photography road trip tour. Over 18 days, I went from Louisiana, to Missouri, to Iowa, to Minnesota, to Chicago, to Ohio, to DC, to Maryland, to Manhattan, to Boston, to Vermont, to Montreal, back to Boston, then to Maine.

    Then after the summer, I drove from Maine to Maryland in a day. Stayed a few days, then drove from Maryland to Louisiana. 1200 miles. Then a week later, I drove the 1200 miles back to Maryland.

    I enjoy the drives, though. They're quite peaceful. Maybe I just like traveling? I will say that if I never drive through Virginia again, it will be too soon. Nothing personal, it's just a long, monotonous state that feels like it never ends. The view never changes. You're constantly traveling alongside 18 wheelers on two lane interstates. Just... no. I'll go through Kentucky and around if I have to next time.
  16. OutThere thread starter macrumors 603


    Dec 19, 2002

    Those sound like some cool trips. I'm also glad you mentioned photography because I was planning on taking my camera gear. I'm going to be passing by a lot of rust belt areas so I felt I might have some interesting post industrial landscape to shoot.
  17. chrmjenkins macrumors 603


    Oct 29, 2007
    Sweet molasses why?!
  18. Tanglewood macrumors 6502a


    Jun 7, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    Longest solo trip I've done was from San Diego to Lake Powell which is about 600 miles one way. Some of the detours I did were to the north rim of the Grand Canyon and to Red Rock area outside Vegas.

    Though the longest traveling by myself was when I was backpacking through Europe from Milan, Italy to London, UK for about 2 weeks. Its really fun waking up, pulling out a map and saying, "where do I want to go today?"
  19. garybUK Guest


    Jun 3, 2002
    I recently did a 1100km trip (about 690miles) from Manchester to Frankfurt in my car on my own to go for a Interview.

    I stopped off at a couple of places along the way, I stopped in Dunkerque to re-visit where I went for a school trip, then stopped in Brussels and Köln, I stayed overnight in a gorgeous little town called Bad Goddesburg then up in the morning for my interview.

    I did a little 'Top Gear' Challenge on the way home, I filled the car to the brim in Frankfurt and got all the way back home (Stalybridge) on the same tank and that's doing a couple of 220kmph stints on Der Autobhan!

    I am planning to go again for a bit of a break, maybe onto München and to Romania then back up via Berlin then onto Bruges and stop over a bit more.

    Its fun though really fun and quite liberating on your own.

    My trusty Macbook Pro provided internet and I used the fantastic Ovi Maps navigation to get me round.

    Some hairy bits though were trying to navigate through towns in a Right hand drive car and also leaning over to get to barriers was a nightmare.
  20. glocke12 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2008
    In my early 20's I drove back and forth from eastern PA to western MT 4-5 times, all solo. I was not, and did not need to work at the time, so the rules may have been a little different for me.

    Going solo on a road trip has alot of advantages (especially if its your first time), and some disadvantages.

    Here is what I liked about it:

    you can spend as much time as you want in places. The first time I drove out west it took me two weeks. There were places that I visited that I spend 2-3 days at a time in.

    You can take any route you want.

    There is alot of time for personal reflection.

    You can change your plans at any time...

    The list goes on, but you get the idea...going solo gives you alot of freedom you would otherwise not have.

    Ive never taken an extensive (500 or more miles) road trip with someone, but I have done shorter trips (300-400 miles) with people, and spent days at a time backpacking with people so know what it is like to spend alot of time with one or very few people.

    Its not bad, but the downside is that you cant be as spontaneous when someone else is present, also depending on your personality another persons company can get old real quick.

    Also, one thing to be aware of is that going solo can be dangerous. There were a couple of times that I stopped at a rest area in a remote place where I encountered creepy strange people....Just be aware of your surroundings.

    My suggestion is to keep it as a solo trip, do some exploring on your way back, and enjoy your solitude!
  21. Dagless macrumors Core


    Jan 18, 2005
    Fighting to stay in the EU
    Driving through Stalybridge is a challenge on its own ;).

    My dad does a similar drive through Europe every couple of years. Gorlice (in Poland) to Uppermill. Takes around 3 days if you dawdle. I keep meaning to go on one.
  22. RITZFit macrumors 65816


    Sep 16, 2007
    In my Corner
    I'll take any kind of road trip (especially if I get clear blue skies and open highways ;) ). but yeah, bring LOTS of good music!
  23. kellen macrumors 68020


    Aug 11, 2006
    Seattle, WA
    Drove from seattle to Philly 2 times. Good times. I would suggest satellite radio, it made the trip fun. I was on a timeline so no stopping for me for the sights, just slept in rest stops.

    Have fun and be careful.
  24. RedReplicant macrumors 6502a

    Mar 31, 2010
    I ride solo loops of ~500mi a week... always refreshing to go hit up my nice twisty filled loop. :)
    I do carry (concealed is legal in Az), I do have a SPOT device that I update every 1/2 hour, and I do let people know where I am going and when to expect me back.

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