Our 33 Day, 6731 Mile Road Trip–part 13 Recap

>> Sunday, July 22, 2012

As the title says, Connie and I were gone from home for 33 days (and 32 nights).  We drove nearly 7000 miles, by actual odometer readings it was 6731 miles.  We crossed or drove through a portion of 17 states.  Including Kentucky, where we started and ended up, we drove through Kentucky, a corner of Indiana, across Illinois, Missouri, a small corner of Iowa, across Nebraska, Wyoming, part of Utah, across Idaho, through much of Oregon, into and back out of Washington, down through California, across Arizona,  New Mexico, Texas, Arkansas, and half way across Tennessee before getting back to Kentucky. 

Of the 32 nights we were gone from home we spent 10 nights at our son’s home, 8 nights with friends, 1 night in a motel and 13 nights we slept in our van.  9 of those nights were spent in the auto parking lot at “truck stops” or as they are called most often now, Travel Plazas.  1 night was spent in a Wal-Mart parking lot and 3 nights in campgrounds.

If we use the amount spent for a motel for the one night as an average figure the 13 nights spent in the the van saved us almost $1000.00.  I mentioned in part 1 that we tried to figure all the ways we could cut expenses.  One way we did that, in addition to sleeping in the van, was to invest in an America the Beautiful Senior Interagency Pass available for those over 62 years of age (and it is good for a lifetime).  The pass is $10.00 plus a fee of $10.00 when ordered by mail, as I did.  With the pass we were able to visit the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center and the 3 national parks for free.  Two of the campgrounds we stayed in were in national forests and we got 50% off of the normal fee.  By my calculations we saved about $85.00 after deducting the cost of the pass.

I had mentioned that gasoline would be our big expense.  The lowest price we paid was $3. 299 a gallon.  Most was in the $3.50 to $3.65 range.  It was much more expensive in California and parts of Oregon and Arizona.  The most we paid was at a station just outside of Yosemite National Park, and I only bought $20.00 worth.  Regular gasoline there was $5.099 a gallon.  When I figured everything up on our return I found that we paid an average of $3.82 a gallon.  Our van performed well and we averaged 24 miles per gallon for the trip.  I felt this was quite good considering we were driving 70 miles per hour on most of the interstates and we were driving in the mountains for many of the miles.

We thoroughly enjoyed our road trip but perhaps the most beautiful thing we saw was this.


Yes, home sweet home.  (This photo was taken last Fall so we didn’t have the color change of the leaves greeting us on our return.)


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