Tim's Travel Blog

Day 1.  San Antonio to Hazen Arkansas

    Pretty uneventful day.  I didn't get as far as I had planned today, but that's because I drove slower than usual.  With gas prices what they are, I wanted to try a couple of things to improve my gas mileage and was successful.  In the past, I've only gotten about 8 MPG in this RV, but I was usually driving the speed limit and running the generator while I was driving.  The reason I would run the generator is so Malissa could sit in the back or take a nap and have the AC on and the boy could play video games or watch TV.  Today, since I was by myself, I decided I would drive without the generator (that was a no-brainer since there was nobody in the back), and I would keep my speed down to 60 mph.  Now, in spite of the fact that I love Sammy Hagar's song, with gas still too close to $4.00/gallon, I might be able to drive 55.  I had a definite improvement in my gas mileage, getting 11 MPG!  I know it's sad that I would be happy about 11 miles per gallon, but that's really a significant increase.  At 8 mpg, I would need 360 gallons of gas for my planned 2880 mile trip.  At 11 mpg, I only need 262 gallons.  That's a 28% decrease in the gas I'll use and a savings (at $4.00/gal) of $392.  I'm not sure which contributed more to the savings though.  I suspect not running the generator saved more gas than driving 60, so to test that theory, I drove at 65 since my last fill up.  I won't know the results of that test until I fill up in the morning.  It probably won't matter, though, since a good portion of tomorrow I'll be driving on I-57 through Illinois, where the speed limit for RVs is 55.  I did run the generator some today when I stopped for lunch and dinner.  I don't know that affected my results.
    Here's a thought for Google maps:  If you look up directions, it assumes you'll be driving the speed limit, need to have a way to change that to put in an average speed.
    I had actually hoped to get to Missouri today, but because of the slower speed, I only made it to Hazen Arkansas.  It was getting late and while I was talking to Malissa on the phone, she looked up RV parks on my route and told me the next one I would get to was T-Ricks at exit 193 (I-40 between Little Rock and Memphis).  If all you want is a place to park for the night, they've got paved pull thru's for $19.98 a night.  The place is right at the exit, south of the interstate, as part of a convenience store and gas station.  The girl at the store told me I could have any space except 13 through 20 (I didn't ask why), so I took space number 1.  There's no cable or internet, but I didn't really care.  I hooked up my electric and water, but had a problem with the water.  When I turned it on, water came gushing out from under the concrete slab, so I just filled up my fresh water tank and turned it off.  I'll tell them about it in the morning, but I don't feel like moving now and don't need much water tonight anyway.