TopNoodles New Reader
4/16/19 3:42 p.m.

A rare occurrence is happening where multiple members of my family will be in one place at the same time. I will be driving from Omaha, Nebraska to central Oregon to meet them. I'm planning to camp on the trip because I can't afford much else right now. Plan is to leave one week before Memorial Day and return home two days after, hopefully dodging the worst traffic. After searching prices online I'm leaning toward just tent camping at KOA because it's next to the interstate and not really more expensive when you take park entrance fees into consideration. I will be doing all my sightseeing in Oregon so I will be skipping most parks on the way there to save time. I will also be skipping I-80 through Nebraska if I can get around the flood damaged roads. After driving the entirety of South Dakota, Wyoming, and Idaho in 2016 I still rank I-80 through Nebraska as my least favorite stretch of interstate. Return route will be the same.

This will be the furthest I've taken the Miata and the furthest I've driven solo, but not my first Miata camping trip and not my first drive to central Oregon. Last summer I drove the Miata 8 hours one way so I'm using what I learned to hopefully get me through two 9 hour days.

This is my planned route as of right now. Breaks up the driving to 3 reasonable days, and allows me to pass through Grand Teton Park without adding much time. Overnight stops are Casper and Twin Falls. Tips and route advice are appreciated, and I'll post some pictures once I get underway.

thatsnowinnebago SuperDork
4/16/19 6:58 p.m.

Boneyard Brewing in Bend is absolutely delightful. In fact, it's my favorite brewery there. 

corsepervita HalfDork
4/16/19 8:31 p.m.

Don't think my Jalpa will be back up by then, but I'm in Redmond.  Would still be rad to get a beer with another GRM'r.

TopNoodles New Reader
5/19/19 10:37 p.m.

Car is packed, I will depart early tomorrow morning. I've adjusted my route due to weather and I will be following I-80 all the way through Wyoming. Might still get a chance to go through Jackson on the return trip. I'll try to post updates if I'm able.

Stefan MegaDork
5/19/19 11:40 p.m.

I’ll be in Bend the 26th-29th.  So if there’s a chance to gather briefly for beverages and foodstuffs on the 27th/28th I could probably make it.

TopNoodles New Reader
5/20/19 6:03 p.m.
Stefan said:

I’ll be in Bend the 26th-29th.  So if there’s a chance to gather briefly for beverages and foodstuffs on the 27th/28th I could probably make it.

It's likely I will be in the area. I go back home the 29th.

First leg if the trip complete. I-80 is more tolerable on an overcast weekday when the sun isn't trying to cook you before traffic does. I guess I don't hate it, but I was right that the traffic is what usually makes it such a chore.

The whole drive was overcast and raining. Can't really complain, there are no bugs on the car yet. Dodged a winter storm through Laramie and made it to a motel in Rawlins. Tomorrow I leave for Twin Falls, and arrive sooner than anticipated due to the route change. For some reason the drive seemed less punishing, but stopping frequently helps alleviate soreness and stiffness. Just stepping out of the car can buy another 30 minutes of relative comfort.

TopNoodles New Reader
5/21/19 8:09 p.m.

Woke up to this:

Snow wasn't accumulating yet so I booked it out of there. Didn't have any problems with traction but I was expecting it. About an hour drive through dense blowing snow, roads were very wet but not frozen. When the snow finally turned to rain things actually got worse. Suddenly all the truckers put the pedal to the metal and in order to not get rock blasted I had to drive faster then them. The snow was light and didn't stick to the glass, but once the trucks started kicking up water visibility would drop to 0 if I got too close.

Eventually I cleared the storm and rolled into Utah.

After 900 miles I put the top down, and had to put it back up after about 20 minutes. I planned to spend some time in Salt Lake City but the rain caught up with me. I didn't want to be caught in rain and traffic again so I took off for Idaho. Weather was mostly clear through Idaho and I made it to KOA in Twin Falls. Not the prettiest campground but I'll be out of here early for the last leg of the trip.

This car hasn't been driven much in the past 20 years, but I'm doing my part:

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