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Discussion Starter #1
The trip is still 7 months away, but my wife and I are trying to figure out if we should drive or fly to California. We'll be traveling from TX to San Francisco, and if I remember right, we'll probably need to go through the Rockies. Anyone have driven their Insight through this route? If so, any advice, stories? It'll be two of us and luggauge. My wife and I together weight about 275 lbs. I think the luggauge would not be more that 75 lbs.

We don't have to drive, of course, but just considering it an option at the moment.

Charles
 

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By all means............Drive. Airplanes are for people in a hurry. Take the Insight and enjoy the scenry, people and places. "Stop and smell the Roses".

I've crossed the USA every year since 01 with the "little Red Rocket" and have enjoyed every minute of the trips. You will meet a wide varity of people and see things so much different after the trip.

I've been across the Rockies and up and down California includeing the dreaded Grapevine numerous times. Your mileage might suffer a little but the "CHALLENGE IS THERE".

Post your trip and meet the INSIGHTERS along the way.

IT IS A BALL...............
 

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I have driven my Insight cross-country once on I-10 and once on I-80. So we skirted the Colorado Rockies both times, but I wouldn't hesitate to do it.

You didn't say where in Texas you would be coming from. It's a big state! I-40 will drop you off in Barstow and the road up to San Francisco will take you past a number of Insighters around the aforementioned GrapeVine. Or take I-10 (which is frankly quite desolate) and you can meet Arizona Rick. Hopping up to I-70 seems a bit unlikely for a way to go, but it would take you through Colorado and Utah and from there I-80 will go right into SF.
 

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If I would be given a choice between flying and driving. I'd drive.
I'd drive anywhere on the North American continent just for the sake of it. Here in Europe you just can't get out of the hustle and bustle of city-life. It's so crowded everywhere not comparable to the rural suthwestern States of the US.
Or Canada..... I'd love to drive the Alaska Highway up to Whitehorse then follow the road up to Dawson City and turn right before that and drive the 730 miles up to Inuvik at the end of the Dempster Highway. It would be a dream come true to do that with an Insight 8)
To cross the arctic circle here in Europe is too expensive as the Scandinavian countries ARE too expensive to travel through and the scenery isn't as nice as I remember the Canadian Territories :wink:
 

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Jacksonville to Phoenix

Just picked up my blue Insight; flew to JAX and made it to Crowley, LA the first night; then drove clear across Texas in one day; El Paso by sundown; second night in Lordsburg, NM and then into Phoenix area. Mileage was about 45 with mucho A/C and CVT and driving 70 to 90 mph. Drove great and very comfortable :lol: :D Very Happy with purchase; had it up to 110 at one time. about 2000 miles in 2 and a quarter days. Impressive car. I am 65 years old and hope it is last car I have to buy. :D Now dodging SUVs here in SUV land.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Hi:

Thanks for the responses.

Tell the truth, we have no clue as to the route we would take if we drive. Three days and two nights is the most we can afford to get there from Dallas, TX to San Francisco. The return trip would be about the same, but maybe an extra day.

The reason why driving is an option isn't as much about vacationing, but to figure out a best way to balance cost and conveniences when we spend the month in SF. This is going to be a work-related trip. We have relatives in SF, but the wife will be working some kind of elective at Stanford (I don't really know all the details). The most convenient way to spend the month at Stanford is to stay at a hotel at a long-term rate... you can imagine how expensive that is going to be. We could stay with the relatives in SF and commute. We probably can do BART and CalTrain, but if the commute is more than 1.5 hours each way, that's going to be a problem if she has to show up at work at 6am daily. So finally, if we drive, she can have the option of driving to Standord from SF, as long as she can afford or find parking...

Right now, as part of research, I'm mainly trying to find out if the route to SF would involve some kind of uphill climb that Insight would not be able to make (it probably could, but don't want to be surprised). If I take the safer route, I'll have to make sure we have enough time to make it.

I remember taking a trip with family from L.A. to Vegas, and how hard it was for the compact to travel up the steep hill. I just want to be sure that if I travel on roads with similiar environments , we won't be stranded. :oops:

Charles
 

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If you are the kind of person who sticks to the interstate and like to "make good time", take the plane. If you are kind who gets out the atlas and starts looking for interesting places to see, who plans a different route for the return trip, then enjoy your insight.

The Rockys won't be problem that far south, but the Sierra Nevadas might be. Be ready to drop to 3rd gear alot and use the slow lane. It won't really be a problem. I drove I-70 through Colorada once in an old 3 cyl Geo Sprint.
 

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Travelling is cheap if you stay at campgrounds.
 

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"I'm mainly trying to find out if the route to SF would involve some kind of uphill climb that Insight would not be able to make..."

No. To the best of my knowledge, there is no such climb, at least that's paved :) I live on the east edge of the Sierra Nevada, and drive them all the time, without problems. (And I think I recall someone here writing about taking their Insight up Pike's Peak.) As for slow lanes... well, I'm not the fastest one on the road, but neither is it anywhere close to the slowest.
 

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Bill Clark, congradulations on your purchase! At the rate you are going you will have 300 thousand miles on the car in 1 year! Dogone, your resilience is inspirartional. 110 MPH, 65 years young, yes I'd say you found the perfect car. :)
 

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I drive up and down the Grapevine every day. 60,000 so far and no problems keeping 65 to 70 mph all the way. I do have to move to "S" mode briefly (a CVT thing) but I never slow down.

I have also made the trip from Oklahoma City to Bakersfield on I-40. There is a long (and I mean loooong) uphill portion from Meteor Crater in AZ up to Flagstaff. The car handled it well. The downhill part from Flagstaff to Kingman was GREAT! I think I used like a quart of gas for that whole stretch.

If you take I-40 to Hwy 58, past Edwards AFB, through Mojave, Tehachapi, Bakersfield, then 99 north to west Hwy 46 to Paso Robles, then SOUTH on the 101 back to Hwy 46, west to HWY 1, then up the coastline through Big Sur, Monterey, Santa Cruz and up to SFO...you'll love it. Or, if you really want a challenge, get off Hwy 58 at 395 North up the back side of the Sierras, through Lone Pine, Bishop, Mammoth, Lee Vining and then through the Tioga Pass (Yosemite area)...Wow.

However you get there, enjoy the hell out of it.
 

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cross country trip

Thanks for the kudos!! My wife likes the car also; I notice people trying to pass/race to the next light or cut in the lane I am in. Oh well, let em. I look for a spike in gas in the next year. My commute is 52 miles one way and doing about 42 to 45 mpg with ac and 70 to 80 mph. Looking for better gas mileage in the winter.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Skypig said:
However you get there, enjoy the hell out of it.
Thank you for the great tips. We're still looking into requesting more time for us to have more traveling time on the road, then we can finalize our plans.

So now that it seems the Insight can go just about anywhere, and I'm getting such good advices on places to go... does anyone know of an URL that's a good guide/tool for planning trips like this? I think a lot of commercial sites mainly concentrate on major cities, and fuzzy on the rest.

I'm also thinking about getting a GPS+Map Software (USB) add-on for my laptop. Are there any recommendations? I researched about them a few years back, and it seems that the add-on sector of the GPS market has not mature yet. I own an older version of "Streets & Trips" and been wondering about the new GPS version of the software. I think the handheld GPS units like "Streetpilot" are nice, but it's not something that I'm going to use enough to justify the expense ($500-$1000) while USB GPS add-ons are about $150 range.

Thanks for all the great advices (please keep them coming) :wink:

Charles
 

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If you go through Nevada a friend of mine has recently emailed me stories of the UFO Highway there, and the few places where you can go.

There's so much to see in Arizona, too...note the thread on Sedona. The desert is so beautiful there, it's surreal.
 
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