Sunday, September 20, 2015

Route to Texas Plotted

Although the route to Texas has been plotted and reservations made along the way for a while, I took this afternoon to compose my daily trip pages. They are done and printed. Yay! That’s one more pre-trip item done and dusted.

When traveling from points A to B over several states, I plot our route – the highways, etc. Next, I make reservations along the route. Once the route and reservation stages are complete, I look at each travel day’s route in detail – from start to finish – on Google maps. I make note of where we pick up a different highway, bypasses around large cities and explicit instructions to reach that day’s destination. I then type up all this information including total anticipated miles and the park information – address, phone number, rate, person who took our reservation, confirmation number, deposit, etc. 

Each travel day has its own page. Once complete, I print each page. Once printed, I consult my Allstays Truck & Travel app and the My Pilot app to locate rest areas and fueling locations along the day’s route. I hand write this info on the page for the day.

The page for the day goes in the truck for that leg of our trip. We have atlases (regular and Motor Carriers), of course, and I do have GPS on my phone; however, I find this method to work well. With my trip day page handy to refer to at crucial times, all I have to do is drive, follow my instructions and enjoy the trip.

If we had a shorter rig, it would be easier to get into smaller fueling locations and so forth. Being as it is, I’m not keen on trying to find someplace where I can get this big baby in and out without a hassle, and I like knowing I have a place to land us for the night.

Our upcoming trip back to Texas will be a journey of almost 1200 miles.  We have done mileage-marathon days in the past, but now keep the miles under 250 and sometimes even under 200. We have found we are much more relaxed, have more fun and are less tired with shorter days. This allows us to reach each day’s destination, set up, prepare dinner and chill out. We also build in layovers of 2-3 nights along the way.

The first segment will be only about 90 miles with a 2-might stay. We will have worked the night shift prior to leaving, meaning our shift ends around 6 AM the morning we leave. A short trip with 2 nights off the road will give us a chance to rest and begin the transition back into normal sleep patterns.

Then it’s two 1-night travel days followed by a 2-night layover in Alabama. After that, it’s travel 3 days and then down for 3 nights (the park in Beaumont, TX has a “buy 2, get 3rd free” special). This will set us up to go through Houston on a Sunday (avoiding weekday traffic nastiness), spending one night on the northwest side of Houston and then making our way on the final stretch to our last stop on a Monday.

With that done, there’s just a few last-minute items to do . . . a hair appointment for me this week, a stock-up grocery run and laundry day a couple of days prior to departure and, of course, prepping the rig and truck for hitting the road. I may even sneak in a bath and clip for Maggie.

We should be a bit lighter this trip, having rid ourselves of our dining table and chairs and our mini fridge, which conked out about a month ago. We may replace it when we get to Texas, but we’ll see; we may not need it with our living conditions changed (i.e., not conditions as in New Jersey like stocking up for snowstorms, etc.) and I like having the extra space without it.  My office setup – wee desk and filing cabinet – are not nearly as heavy as the dining set was.

I haven’t been blogging because things here are very routine and I have been working my virtual assistant job quite a bit.  That boils down to not having zilch to report and little creativity, time or energy to get together any sort of blog post.

We did play chess Friday and Saturday nights this weekend, epic matches as usual.

Oh! Dave has the early morning hours of duty, so had been enjoying the brilliance of Venus this week. I stayed up until just sunrise Saturday morning so I could see it, too. It was well worth the all-nighter.  Amazing sight, that.

I am looking forward to our trip. I intend to just enjoy it, take photos, be silly and blog about it!

Thanks for stopping by!

1 comment:

  1. You are quite the planner. Len lets ALL the planning to me. Where we go, what we do, etc etc. He says just point him in the direction he needs to drive. Good idea on the Houston drive through. I HATE that area even though I am not driving. I tow on open roads to give Len a break. We, too, try to do shorter runs now. Bet you are getting anxious to get out of there!


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