Since the title of my blog is AdventureChris I thought that I would start posting some adventure posts. So I have decided to do a weekly “ How to Survive” post, in which I give advice on how to survive various situations involving travel and adventure. Now, these posts are not intended to be humorous so please refrain from laughing.
How to Survive the Road Trip
In 5 Easy Steps
Step 1: Bring snacks.
Sure deep fried chicken wings, greasy cheeseburgers and super stuffed-grande-burritos are delicious but let’s face it, you’re going to be sitting in a car for hours and even days and there’s not much room for physical activity. Although, you could make “fit-pit” stops as I like to call them. A fit-pit stop is pulling over at a rest stop or safe location (not the side of the highway) and getting in a quick ten to fifteen minute workout. It should be enough to stretch the muscles, burn some calories and get the blood flowing. This sounds like a good idea but if you’re like me and sweat like a turkey on thanksgiving, no one will appreciate your “aroma” in the car; especially driving through the desert. If you have room in your vehicle pack a cooler with healthy snacks that won’t perish too fast, such as sandwiches without mayo trail mix or beef jerky and granola bars. Make sure to bring plenty of water too. Do yourself a favor and save some time and save your waistline.
Step 2: Sleep.
So there I was, miles above the Earth’s surface traveling at mach 2 speeds in my F22 stealth fighter. Enemy bogies were fixed on my location and coming in hot! The enemy fighter plane at my six had achieved radar lock and fired one of its missiles. I had no time to think and instinct kicked in. I pointed the nose of my jet straight down and barrel rolled careening towards the mountain range below, when suddenly, a semi-truck appeared directly in front of me! What was a semi-truck doing in the sky? I thought to myself. Oh that’s right, I’m driving in my car so this must be a dream. I shouldn't be sleeping, I should be driving! This terrifying Top-Gun tale was meant to stress the importance of planning rest stops on your trip. Call ahead and book reservations at hotels and lodges along the way. If you feel sleepy while driving, pull over and let someone else man the helm for a while. Even professional truckers aren’t supposed to drive more than eleven hours in one day. Be smart and get ample sleep.
Step 3: Music. Lots of it.
I once spent over ten hours in a car on a road-trip listening to the ENTIRE ( not by choice) Sherlock Holmes Mystery series on audio-book. When we arrived at our destination I found myself unknowingly speaking in a British accent for at least two days! Unless your car has satellite radio, good stations get harder and harder to find, especially as you head into more remote areas. Make sure to bring an ample amount of CD’s or update your playlists to be sure that you don’t get bored on the trip. Be sure to keep the music lively and upbeat to help prevent dozing off at the wheel. Also make sure there is at least one loud classic rock mix available for those moments when someone wants to talk about feelings or the funny thing their cat did the other night.
Step 4: Pimp Your Ride.
Everyone has electronic devices, whether it’s an e-reader, a net-book, or a cellphone and we all bring them with us. Consequently these devices need to be charged and most vehicles only have one or two AC outlets. Furthermore, thanks to a particular fruit based company not everyone’s device uses the same charger anymore, thus leaving the option of sharing chargers out. Don’t be the one with the most LTE coverage anywhere in the United States and a dead phone. I’d urge you to pay a visit to your local electronics store and pick up a multi-port/USB car charger. This will ensure that no one feels the shame of getting left out of the electronic “watering-hole”.
Step 5: Roadside Service.
It’s a good idea to make sure at least one of the people on the trip has emergency roadside service. Sooner or later, if you take enough road trips, eventually you might find yourself stuck on the side of the road, halfway between the Texas Chainsaw Massacre and The Hills Have Eyes; we all know how those situations turned out…
Now you should have all the tools you need to have a fun, safe and successful road trip. Happy travels!