Driving from GA - Renting trailer, RV, flat bed... Advice?

Ideas, advice, tips, and tricks regarding shelter, shade, tents, and camping. Yes, this includes RV's too.

Driving from GA - Renting trailer, RV, flat bed... Advice?

Postby archeolojust » Fri Jan 08, 2010 8:02 pm

Myself and two others are driving from Georgia this summer for BM. Anyone have experience or advice for driving from the east to the west coast?

We're making the drive for several reasons:

My boyfriend has never left Georgia. This is unacceptable and I want him to see more of the US. Also, I have horrible experience with planes treating my stuff like crap. In addition, we are all 22-23 and I am unsure on car rental procedure in Reno but I have heard you must be 24/25 to rent a car?

Willing to latch everything to a flat bed, would prefer a trailer, and would rather not do an RV unless it truly ends up the cheapest or something. I prefer something at least a little closer to "real camping". I don't really know anything about RV power anyway... (how long it lasts, etc)

We do have a friend in Cali meeting us at BM, so shipping to her is also an option, if rental price of trailer would be cheaper from there. Just trying to figure out what will be the cheapest but also best way to get everything we would like to bring out there, as well as help my man see part of the country.
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Postby motskyroonmatick » Fri Jan 08, 2010 11:12 pm

I guess it depends on what your tow rig is. There is a great thread on towing here. I will go look for it.

I found it!!!
viewtopic.php?t=19853&highlight=towin+trailers
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Postby joel the ornery » Sun Jan 10, 2010 6:41 am

rent a large van.
pack the minimums of everything.
double the amount of cash you have planned for fuel.
observe the traffic laws.
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Postby C.f.M. » Sun Jan 10, 2010 1:18 pm

There's a variety of routes, depending on where you want to go and how long you want it to take.

We went out of ATL up through...I think it was the "40 route?" Chattanooga, Ky., Mo., Ill., Wyo., etcetc.

Nearly 3,000 miles. I think. That might have been the final count, including the return drive.

Terribly scenic. We (eight of us) were on a short bus (a-hardy har har) with a trailer. We took other people's stuff, who flew, so that is another option (driving yourself there, having someone else haul your stuff).

If it is just two of you, the vehicle depends on your space needs. And whether you want it on the playa.

I thought you had to be 25 everywhere, to rent a car.

You really oughta start hanging out with the ATL burners...they have loads of experience! Play in the Hood is most Sundays @ Colaboratory (where Decomp and a NYE show were held this year).

http://colaboratory.net/

http://wiki.freesideatlanta.org/info

ETA: Also, if you drive, be very, VERY prepared to stay nowhere on schedule, and spend a loooot more money than you planned on.

Our trip took almost two days longer, and included (among other delights) a night spent in a tire repair shop's parking lot.
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Postby archeolojust » Sun Jan 10, 2010 2:03 pm

That's why I mentioned the age thing, I figure its the same everywhere for cars.

I drive a little Celica, so....yeah, that won't be going to the playa.

I do work on cars myself, so I'm less worried about car problems.

I figure the trip will take a bit longer than expected. I grew up taking long road trips across the US with my family - very scenic ones.

Also, we are now considering shipping our stuff to California, driving there and meeting our Cali friend who will rent/borrow a trailer and we all head out to BRC together.

And as for Sundays, trust me...I'd love to go, but its hard to get off work weekends when they are the only days I can work with college starting back up monday. I do have Lee (FlameGoddessLee) to talk to, as she dances with me and is a good friend, but I think she stays with theme camps usually.
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Postby Oldguy » Sun Jan 10, 2010 3:19 pm

I traveled crosscountry once when in the military by car. From northern california I drove south to take the I10 route. The first night I slept in Yuma Arizona, the second in Bigsprings Texas, the third outside Nashville Tennesee. Except for a streach in New Mexico the roads were good, but that was in 1973. Things are probably better now.
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Postby shroom » Wed Jan 13, 2010 6:33 pm

Congrats on getting him out of Georgia! (I'm a Georgia girl & love it, but you have to travel!)

I plan on going to Burning Man next year, this year just isn't making as of right now. When I do go I'm driving!

Just read a lot of the threads here & check out the first timers guide too. That helped me decide what I need to bring.
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Postby viajera80 » Thu Jan 14, 2010 12:19 pm

It should be a great trip! As for the "real camping" aspect. That will be fine on your way out to the Playa, but once you are out here...tent camping sucks. If you can find some way to protect your stuff, bed and body from the dust and heat, DO IT! That might mean sleeping in a vehicle or truck.
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Postby archeolojust » Thu Jan 14, 2010 12:46 pm

I'm not worried about the heat. I'm more worried about the cold. I'm pretty decent at survival.

Also, I feel like RVs are cheating, but that's just me.
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Postby C.f.M. » Thu Jan 14, 2010 2:29 pm

Tent camping's just fine.

It's not "car problems" so much as...exploding tires...leaking fuel whatevers...completely unexpected issues. Not "oops, I shouldn't have driven this Pinto across the country..."

Colab has other events. Shows. Arts n Crafts. /shrug - and the burnATL group I recommended in another thread you started. Plenty of burners have plenty of things going on, from just hanging out for dinner to shows to how-tos to...whatevers.

The cold is just fine. Sure, it's cold, but you're surviving through this past month, right?

Warm feet, hands and head + layers = no problems.

Except trying to pee with all that on. And finding the toilets. And avoiding all the open playa spots others decided were a toilet. :evil:

Aaaaanyways.
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Postby shroom » Mon Apr 19, 2010 9:09 am

I've been looking into the route since it's closer to time now.

Google maps shows a route going through TN, Missiouri, Nebraska, Wyoming, etc & another route through Texas, New Mexico, etc.

I think I'm going one way and coming back another since I've never seen most of those places.

:D excited!
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Postby C.f.M. » Mon Apr 19, 2010 9:11 am

shroom wrote:I've been looking into the route since it's closer to time now.

Google maps shows a route going through TN, Missiouri, Nebraska, Wyoming, etc & another route through Texas, New Mexico, etc.

I think I'm going one way and coming back another since I've never seen most of those places.

:D excited!


Everybody I know in Atlanta who drives takes the upper route, citing "abject boredom" on the route through Texas. Days and days of flat land. And more trouble with the cops.
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Postby AntiM » Mon Apr 19, 2010 9:17 am

Since I road with MyLarry on the truck across all the major interstates, I know the ones I like as far as scenery goes.

Avoid the TA in Amarillo. Heck, avoid Amarillo.
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Postby LostinReno » Mon Apr 19, 2010 9:23 am

AntiM wrote:Avoid the TA in Amarillo. Heck, avoid Amarillo.


I couldn't agree more, that has got to be THE most boring long horrible strech of highway anywhwere. And heck, avoid most TA's! Unless you need a good colon cleansing. :shock:
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Postby Zhust » Mon Apr 19, 2010 9:40 am

archeolojust wrote:I drive a little Celica, so....yeah, that won't be going to the playa.


In 2005 and 2006 I drove a Honda Civic hatchback from Rochester, NY to Burning Man and back. Both years I had a project in back ( http://jasondoesitall.com/bikewith2brains ) and a bike rack; no roof rack, though.

When I was tired I'd stop at rest areas and sleep across the front seats with some pillows. It's a long drive, and with 2 people quite crowded, but if you think about it, it's "really" just 3 days or so. Subsequently, I have a big station wagon and my girlfriend and I drove in 2007. We set it up so we could sleep in the back while the other drove. The way to do this is to make the back seat a bed by stuffing soft things behind the front seats, then putting cargo in the passenger seat. If you pack particularly light, it's entirely possible.
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Postby shroom » Mon Apr 19, 2010 9:43 am

Thanks for the advice on the boredom & Amarillo.
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Postby gyre » Mon Apr 19, 2010 5:12 pm

Go north at least by Memphis and take I-80 across nebraska.
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Postby C.f.M. » Tue Apr 20, 2010 5:40 am

gyre wrote:Go north at least by Memphis and take I-80 across nebraska.


I really loved driving out through that area - Wyoming especially.

It was gorgeous...it's own type of beauty, but the whole trip made me realize I'm a Southerner...trees and greenery and even...even humidity.
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Postby shroom » Tue Apr 20, 2010 5:43 am

As a Southerner I think I'll enjoy some time with no humidity. 8)
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Postby C.f.M. » Tue Apr 20, 2010 6:00 am

shroom wrote:As a Southerner I think I'll enjoy some time with no humidity. 8)



That's exactly what I thought! What? I can walk around in 90+ degree weather and be dry? THAT SOUNDS AWESOME!!

I'll take shade and a pond to jump in over the relentless, dry desert heat!

If you make it to Transformus, you'll see what I'm talking about. 8)
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Postby gyre » Tue Apr 20, 2010 12:26 pm

You're kidding, right?

The Transformus site has very low humidity compared to where I live, even in the swampy areas.

I would be happy to never see 100% humidity again.
Even the 3% years on the playa are a relief.
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Postby C.f.M. » Tue Apr 20, 2010 12:44 pm

gyre wrote:You're kidding, right?

The Transformus site has very low humidity compared to where I live, even in the swampy areas.

I would be happy to never see 100% humidity again.
Even the 3% years on the playa are a relief.


I'm not kidding. I said,

"I'll take shade and a pond to jump in..."

The shade of the trees and the two lakes of Deerfields.

Which is more north - and in the mountains.

Where I live tops 100 degrees and 100% humidity, day after day, on a regular basis during the summer.
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Postby shroom » Sun May 02, 2010 3:24 pm

Question for any of you who have driven from Atlanta (or close by) and taken either route. How long did it take you? Did you stop a lot or haul ass?

I was thinking 2 days, but 2 1/2 might be more realistic. I know we're going to want to stop and take pictures along the way.

Also, any good campgrounds along the route?

Thanks!!!
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Postby gyre » Sun May 02, 2010 4:40 pm

I went out 40 this year and back by 80.
I would only take 40 again if I had time to sightsee.
But I had to take it last time.

I pushed as hard as I could, because of delays leaving.
Much traffic and construction on 40.
The only thing I had time to see was meteor crater.
Had to see that.

I have always planned to loop the country and take time to see what I wanted.
That still hasn't happened.

I can recommend a good ice cream place on 80, as soon as I find the card.
And nebraska actually has weather displays on monitors in their rest stops.
Came in very handy.
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Postby shroom » Sun May 02, 2010 6:11 pm

Thanks! I'll have to see the meteor crater!
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Postby Elliot » Sun May 02, 2010 8:57 pm

:D
Archeolojust, you might consider buying a school bus. School buses straight out of school district service are the Great American Transportation Bargain. There is a bunch of info around here somewhere -- in the Q & A section, I think; "School Buses 101" or some such.

The bigger ones are usually a better deal than the short ones.

You would register it as a Motor Home. Cheap insurance and no special driver license required for Motor Home.

Of course, I'm biased -- I have a 1992 Blue Bird 40-footer.
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Postby gyre » Sun May 02, 2010 9:04 pm

The No 1 Cabela's is on 80 in nebraska.
Check out the bargain cave, unless you already have everything.


http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templ ... res*042310
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Postby C.f.M. » Mon May 03, 2010 6:31 am

shroom wrote:Question for any of you who have driven from Atlanta (or close by) and taken either route. How long did it take you? Did you stop a lot or haul ass?

I was thinking 2 days, but 2 1/2 might be more realistic. I know we're going to want to stop and take pictures along the way.

Also, any good campgrounds along the route?

Thanks!!!


From Atlanta, with 24 hr non-stop driving, it took....three days. We left Friday night @ 8, got on playa midday Monday. BUT we had some serious issues. So 2-2 1/2 is totally reasonable, in an ideal, perfect world.
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