2,700 mile road trip report

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Spent the past week at a family gathering on Anna Maria island in Florida. Made the 1,200-mile drive each way straight through in my 108,000 mile 2011 Ford Fusion SEL 2.5. Friday - Left New Haven CT area at 8pm. Me driving, wife napping, 11yo daughter watching Harry Potter movies on her phone. 9pm. George Washington bridge traffic 930 - Cleared traffic and speeding south along the NJ Tpke. 2am - Driver change/fuel stop. Theoretically this would give me a chance to sleep, but the wife sees driving as some kind of moral crusade/battle of wills and she argues incessantly with the female voice on the gps. Oh well. 6am - Fuel up at Waffle House. Got gas (for the car). 7am - Torrential rain in South Carolina. Pedro is quite sad. Noon - Free oj at the Florida welcome center outside of Jacksonville. 5pm. Six mile traffic jam getting onto the island. The extended family has the beer cold and poolside grill hot when we arrive. 5:01 pm Saturday - Thursday : Beach/pool/margaritas. Saw a manatee in the wild. Saw lots of sea turtle nests but no turtles. Lots of seafood from local beachfront shacks. Lots of heartburn from beachside seafood shack dinners and margaritas. Played mini golf at a place where you can feed live alligators. Shot a 7-over 45. Friday - Harry Potter World of Wizardry with the daughter. Mom bailed due to heat/sunburn/hatred of crowds. Really hot. Really humid. Really expensive. Daughter forced me to wear a Hogwarts robe in 95-degree heat. Daughter drenched me activating a magic rainstorm with a ($50) interactive Hermione wand. Awesome day. In a few years when she doesn't want to hang out with Dad on vacation I won't miss the $$$ but I'll treasure the memories. Saturday 10 am return trip departure. 2pm. Georgia gas station has hot boiled peanuts? What delicious non-driving-friendly snack deviltry is this? 7pm. T-storms AGAIN in South Carolina. (Dammit Pedro!). 45-minute rest area nap at 2 am. Drove through NYC at 65mph. Home at 9am Sunday. Car ran all 2,700 miles without a hiccup. Didn't burn any visible amount of Mobil1 AFE 0w20 but I did go through a full gallon of RainX bug cleaning washer fluid. Averaged just under 34mpg for the trip with a career best 548-mile fuel run through virginia and the Carolinas. Highway runs at 75-80 averaged over 35. The air conditioning's Auto setting stayed at 68 the entire time. Never touched it. Wife and daughter did use fleece blankets to sleep. Audiobooks helped pass the time. Listened to The Witches about the 1692 Salem hangings (17 hours) and A More Perfect Heaven about the Copernican heliocentric revolution (9 hours). Daughter has decreed that she picks the books next time. Would definitely do it again, as long as someone else is paying for the beach house rental again.
 
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pbm

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I have that same 2.5 in my 16' Escape and it's gone from NY to Florida and back twice already. It gets approx. 30 mpg doing 70+ most of the way with AC on. The 2.5 is a solid, long lasting engine and we're very happy with it. I avoided higher trim levels because I wanted this engine rather than one of the turbos. What kind of ATF maintenance have you done in the 108K? Have you had any issues with the power steering in your 2011? ( I ask because the 2010-2012 list PS as a trouble spot and I am considering looking for a used one from that generation). Thanks.
 
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Great trip impressive mpg, we did the trip from Manalapan NJ to West Palm beach in an A4 quattro with a 2 liter turbo and got same 34mpg. I guess in real world not much of a difference. Although I believe the Fusion is a little larger
 

AlienBug

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I had the power steering reflash done after t acted up twice. Both times I shut the car off and the power steering reset and was fine when I restarted. Has not acted up since the reflash. I have only owned the car since March so have not done any transmission service. Factory recommends 150,000 service interval, which makes bitoggers break out in a cold sweat. I may get it serviced sometime in the next year.
 
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Great write up , and thanks for the audio book titles . I listen to audio books screwing around in garage . The witch trials are very interesting part of American history . I had a grandfather on the jury in the Connecticut with trials which was well before the Salem trials , so I have done alot of reading on them .
 
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That's a lot of straight through driving. Why is that I-95 always is a PITA no matter where you drive? Did you have a beer at Slim's bar on AMI? Owner is a big Eagles fan. If you're a Pats fan, I guess you didn't go there.
 
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If your a history buff and the kid likes high fantasy you can probably compromise with Dune or The Lord of the Rings on audiobook.
 

AlienBug

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Originally Posted by NormanBuntz
That's a lot of straight through driving. Why is that I-95 always is a PITA no matter where you drive? Did you have a beer at Slim's bar on AMI? Owner is a big Eagles fan. If you're a Pats fan, I guess you didn't go there.
I'm a Giants fan. So...yeah. We did hit the Doctors Office, Rod n Reel for the fried grouper. Feast for the hogfish. Got a burger at Harry's. Tried to pick up dinner from the Ugly Grouper but they cut off takeout orders at 5pm, which makes no sense to me but we went to Rod n Reel instead. Ridiculously cheap drafts while we manatee-watched and waited for our food.
 

JTK

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Sounds like a good trip! I can't do them straight through anymore. My max time in the car is maybe 13-14hrs and that's with some brief stops. Our last trip to FL from Buffalo took way longer than expected due to traffic stand stills.
 

pbm

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Originally Posted by NormanBuntz
That's a lot of straight through driving. Why is that I-95 always is a PITA no matter where you drive? Did you have a beer at Slim's bar on AMI? Owner is a big Eagles fan. If you're a Pats fan, I guess you didn't go there.
I've done I-95 NY to Florida many times but lately I've been doing I-81 to I-77 and stopping in Charlotte to visit my daughter....it adds a few miles (maybe 80) to the trip but there are no tolls and little traffic (except near Charlotte)…..I-95 around Washington has become a PITA traffic wise.....
 
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Originally Posted by AlienBug
7am - Torrential rain in South Carolina. Pedro is quite sad.
crackmeup LOL
Originally Posted by AlienBug
2pm. Georgia gas station has hot boiled peanuts? What delicious non-driving-friendly snack deviltry is this?
To be eaten whole....
 

AlienBug

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Originally Posted by JLTD
Originally Posted by AlienBug
2pm. Georgia gas station has hot boiled peanuts? What delicious non-driving-friendly snack deviltry is this?
To be eaten whole....
Is that seriously how you're supposed to eat them? I feel like this could just be something you tell the yankee boys so you can laugh at us when we do it. OTOH I was wondering how the heck the truckers manage to eat them while driving. I was one-handed cracking them, squeezing the meat out then stuffing the shells in an empty coke can
 
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I just did a similar trip from Seattle down through Northern CA, back up to and across I-80 through SLC and Omaha, then up to chicago, and then down to Orlando for Universal Studios. One way it was ~4.5K miles. I passed 100K somewhere east of the desert. It was an awesome trip - 63 hours driving time, average speed on the trip computer was 64.6 mph, only 21 MPG overall, but that isn't bad for an older Nissan V8 SUV. I don't know that I would do it again, but it was definitely great to see so much of the countryside with the kids.
 
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Originally Posted by AlienBug
Originally Posted by JLTD
Originally Posted by AlienBug
2pm. Georgia gas station has hot boiled peanuts? What delicious non-driving-friendly snack deviltry is this?
To be eaten whole....
Is that seriously how you're supposed to eat them? I feel like this could just be something you tell the yankee boys so you can laugh at us when we do it. OTOH I was wondering how the heck the truckers manage to eat them while driving. I was one-handed cracking them, squeezing the meat out then stuffing the shells in an empty coke can
Yup....boiled peanuts, shell and all. I didn't believe it either when I first heard it! Not for everyone, some like it with hot sauce.
 
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OP, are you certain you are husband and father? Or were "they" imaginary? In Texas we have some Interstate that allows 75-80 mph travel given that traffic volume is low enough to accommodate that. I doubt the upper limit was that high where you were. At speed, were you EVER within 300' of another vehicle? Was there EVER a situation where you were jammed in with others in the passing lane trying to get around slower traffic? If so, you're a [censored] fool. Failed at first responsibility of a man as the protector of his wife and children. It's the literal (and moral) equivalent of being a drunk 13-year old with an automatic weapon. A vacation needs a plan. Guess your Daddy didn't much like you either. As you'd have understood risk. 1,200-miles straight through? Ha! Firearms and motor vehicles. To have a long life simply avoid ever being shot or in a car wreck. No other causes need apply. Not smoking, obesity or whatever. It's these two. You're not alone, FWIW, as stupidity is America's new clothing. It's todays norm. Not at all the way Americans drove up until 20-years ago. Cross that off your list of titles as well .
 
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AlienBug

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Originally Posted by TheTanSedan
OP, are you certain you are husband and father? Or were "they" imaginary? In Texas we have some Interstate that allows 75-80 mph travel given that traffic volume is low enough to accommodate that. I doubt the upper limit was that high where you were. At speed, were you EVER within 300' of another vehicle? Was there EVER a situation where you were jammed in with others in the passing lane trying to get around slower traffic? If so, you're a [censored] fool. Failed at first responsibility of a man as the protector of his wife and children. It's the literal (and moral) equivalent of being a drunk 13-year old with an automatic weapon. A vacation needs a plan. Guess your Daddy didn't much like you either. As you'd have understood risk. 1,200-miles straight through? Ha! Firearms and motor vehicles. To have a long life simply avoid ever being shot or in a car wreck. No other causes need apply. Not smoking, obesity or whatever. It's these two. You're not alone, FWIW, as stupidity is America's new clothing. It's todays norm. Not at all the way Americans drove up until 20-years ago. Cross that off your list of titles as well .
Awww. Did someone miss their nap time and feeling cranky? Or just PMS?
 

Pew

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Originally Posted by TheTanSedan
OP, are you certain you are husband and father? Or were "they" imaginary? In Texas we have some Interstate that allows 75-80 mph travel given that traffic volume is low enough to accommodate that. I doubt the upper limit was that high where you were. At speed, were you EVER within 300' of another vehicle? Was there EVER a situation where you were jammed in with others in the passing lane trying to get around slower traffic? If so, you're a [censored] fool. Failed at first responsibility of a man as the protector of his wife and children. It's the literal (and moral) equivalent of being a drunk 13-year old with an automatic weapon. A vacation needs a plan. Guess your Daddy didn't much like you either. As you'd have understood risk. 1,200-miles straight through? Ha! Firearms and motor vehicles. To have a long life simply avoid ever being shot or in a car wreck. No other causes need apply. Not smoking, obesity or whatever. It's these two. You're not alone, FWIW, as stupidity is America's new clothing. It's todays norm. Not at all the way Americans drove up until 20-years ago. Cross that off your list of titles as well .
Ummm....are you sure you're in the right thread?
 
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DANG!!! What crawled up his butt and died???? I make trips like that ALL THE TIME. Except, I do the driving, OP at least had help from the wife. Driving in Texas, outside of DFW/Austin-San Antonio on I 35, is a breeze. The Austin turnpike, speed limit is 85 along most of that stretch, but it's a toll. You can get from Georgetown to east San Antonio in about 2 hours.
 
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