Mitchell and I chose to drive to Los Angeles from Indiana, partly because we knew we couldn’t fit all of our stuff into a compact space to fly. We also were freaking BROKE and needed a way to get there both cheaply and—honestly—still kind of in a fun way. I had never been out west, so I knew that driving to LA was going to be both exhausting and full of landscapes I had never seen before. So we decided to road trip our way there. In three days. With a cat. And a car full of everything we needed for the next two weeks.
Here’s the thing, we used a U-Pack system to pack all of us stuff from Indiana to LA. They basically drop off a cube on your driveway, and you have to pack your stuff. Then they drive it on a truck to wherever you’re moving. This was a great idea for us (it was cheap and we’re pretty strong and able to move large objects ourselves).
I was also super impressed with how much stuff we were able to fit in there. We had a sofa, desks, like ten boxes of books (mine). This is the video that made us believe that we could actually pack all our crap in a little cube.
The problem was they kind of…picked up the crate a day earlier than they were supposed to. So we had a lot of stuff we had to jam into the car and drive with. So not only did we have our cat Dany with us, but we also had to wrangle her out of the suitcases, blankets, and other various objects so she wouldn’t get smooshed. Eventually she found nice spots like in the space between the driver’s back and the chair.
We ended up using a service called Hip Camp (https://www.hipcamp.com) which is basically like a Air B&B but with camping out in someone’s yard. I was a little nervous to be honest, because the idea sounded like some great start to a horror movie. But when we stopped in Colorado, the guy’s yard was basically a huge plot of land that he had turned into a campsite. Then in Utah, it was a big open field with a lot of space between campers. It was about thirty dollars each night, and they didn’t mind that we had a cat and a car full of everything you usually don’t bring camping with you. We pitched a tent and slept with our kitty dearest’s litter box just a few feet away.
I’ve travelled to several places with gorgeous mountains before making this drive. I just loved how different the the mountains looked as you drove through each state. It was also very fun to drive straight downhill in Colorado in the pouring rain (not really, I don’t think I’ve clenched my entire body for that long). I had flown over these mountains before, but it’s really not the same. Even if you find a cheap flight, you won’t be able to experience this kind of view.
One thing we did to break up the drive was stop every four hours. This may be too long of a time for some people, but we were able to map out our stops at gas stations (using https://www.gasbuddy.com) and stretch our legs before switching who was driving. All in all it was over thirty hours of driving over three days. Let me tell you, I will not be doing another road trip for a very long time.