The following is a summary of the boring bits from the Wolseley Across
America trip. If you have any questions or comments, I can be reached at
- Left Miami Saturday, 8/12/2000.
- Arrived home Monday, 9/4/2000.
- Made 24 overnight stops; including, 2 nights in Charleston and 3 in
- Traveled through 18 States.
- Smallest: South Carolina at 31,000 square miles (about the size of
- Biggest: Montana at 147,138 square miles (almost 3 times the size of
- Most populated: Florida at 14.7 million people.
- Most people per square mile: Florida with 250 (about ¼ that of England).
- Least populated: North Dakota at 641,000 people.
- Fewest people per square mile: Montana at 6.
- AAA tour books. The American Automobile Association knows and cares
little about automobiles, but they are great for trip information. Their
literature is usually accurate and up-to-date. It is also a little too
middle-of-the-road (if one can be permitted a slight pun for an automobile
club), but once you understand their attempts at offending no one (which is
impossible to do if the truth is told), you can find lots of useful
information from them.
- National Park Service/U.S. Department of the Interior Official Maps and
Guides. I picked up these great summary pamphlets at several of the National
Park Visitor Centers. Wonderful short summaries and good overview maps. It is
probably possible to get them directly from the Park Service.
- National Geographic's Guide to Scenic Highways and Byways, 1995. ISBN
0-7922-2950-9. Like most generic books, this is aimed at a wide audience of
typical cruise-through-the-scenery drivers. Don't let it put you off. It
contains good descriptions of wonderful scenery and is a good alternative
route planner. Get off the Interstates! See the country!
- Insiders' Guide, Civil War Sites in the Southern States, John McKay,
2000. ISBN 1-57380-079-1. This is supposed to be the first of several books
to be issued on the Civil War. I can't wait for the others. You can use it as
a guide to touring. You can use it as a reference book. Or, you can use it as
a darn good read. It is part of the later day history books that tell the
truth rather than the cleaned up version of history that we learned in school.
- National Geographic's Guide to The Lewis and Clark Trail, Thomas
Schmidt, 1998. ISBN 0-7922-7156-4. If you want a short version of the Corps
of Discovery's voyage, you can't go wrong with this book. It's better than a
"Cliff Notes" version, is accurate, well written and well illustrated. It is
also a good trip planner and is aimed at someone who is following (or wants
to follow) the original trail.
- Undaunted Courage, Stephen E. Ambrose, 1996. ISBN 0-684-82697-6. This
is a well-researched book covering the Journey of the Corps of Discovery from
the perspective of a biography of Meriwether Lewis. As well as a good book on
the expedition, you'll read about Lewis' early life, the reasons the Corps of
Discovery was formed, what went on to get the expedition set up at St. Louis
and the tragic end to Lewis' life. Highly recommended.
- Clay Jenkinson, scholar. Mr. Jenkinson must be described as one of the
current day's leading scholars on Thomas Jefferson and the voyage of the
Corps of Discovery. He travels around the country and gives presentations on
both, by taking on the character of Thomas Jefferson or Meriwether Lewis.
Shortly you forget this is Jenkinson and you are lost in time getting a
history lesson from someone who was really there. If you ever get a chance to
hear him in person, find a way to go. Occasionally, his presentations are
taped and show up on local public television stations. He was also
instrumental in both the Thomas Jefferson and Lewis and Clark PBS
presentations done by Ken Burns. Search the Web for more information.
- (Audio tape) Lewis and Clark, The Journey of the Corps of Discovery.
Random House Audiobooks. Dayton Duncan and Ken Burns. Narrated by Ken Burns.
Read by Adam Arkin et. al. Four tapes. Four hours playing time. ISBN
0-679-46052-7. Good quality with good content. Give up the tunes for a while
and substitute these tapes while you drive.
- (Video) Lewis and Clark, The Journey of the Corps of Discovery. PBS
Home Video. Ken Burns. NTSC (Don't know if a PAL version is available.) Four
hours running time. Set in the now well-known Ken Burns format, these tapes
give you a good visual introduction to the expedition.
- (Video) Thomas Jefferson. PBS Home Video. Ken Burns. NTSC (Don't know
if a PAL version is available.) Three hours running time. Covers the life of
an amazing man in an amazing period of world and U.S. history. Gives a good
account of the history around the time of the Lewis and Clark trip.
- AAA Maps
- Dell Inspiron 3500 Laptop computer running, Microsoft Streets and Trips
- Sony SkyMap 2000 GPS Receiver interfaced to Streets and Trips
Remember this car is running an unleaded head and 3.76 final drive on 10"
rims (i.e., 4000 rpm = 60 mph). It was also loaded with approximately 1.5
passengers worth of travel gear and ran the entire trip with a
less-than-aerodynamic roof rack. Outside temperatures varied from 40F to
100+F. Elevations varied from sea level to 6000 feet+.
EG neither burned nor leaked any measurable amount of oil during the entire
trip. Oil was changed once at about the 2900 mile mark, and again, along with
the filter, upon arriving home. No oil was added during the trip.
Total Miles Driven from Miami to Seattle: 6,174.3
Total Gallons of Gasoline Used: 189.42
Number of fill-ups: 39
Used just over one bottle of Red Line Lead Substitute, and one bottle of Gunk
Lead Substitute (I was desperate!).
Miles Per Gallon: Minimum. 21.74; Max. 43.00; Overall, 33.34.
Gasoline Cost: Total $311.70; Ave $1.65 per gallon; Minimum price per gallon.
$1.35; Maximum price per gallon. $2.00
EG WORK DONE ON ROUTE
(Other than normal checking of fluids, tire pressure, fan belt, etc.)
Miami, Florida: added roof rack before leaving.
Palm Beach Gardens: Checked all suspension and steering and other
under-the-car items. LR wheel bearing slightly loose. Checked its torque.
Tightened front upper stabilizer bar bolts. Added DC/AC converter connection.
Added CB radio and antenna. Drilled rivets out on LF seat mount so it could
be used with seat extenders, if necessary.
Mount Pleasant, South Carolina (Charleston). Tightened rear nuts on upper
Near North Carolina/Virginia Border. Wire came loose on fuel sending unit.
Reattached and repositioned the items in the boot.
Newport News, Virginia. Modified the bottom radiator bracket and repositioned
the radiator to solve tropical fan nicking the radiator shroud when the car
is cold. Added overflow hose to radiator overflow tank. Replaced broken horn
button. Rechecked LR wheel bearing. No change. Crimped fuel sending unit wire
connector to keep it from slipping off, again.
St. Louis, Missouri. Oil change. Replaced defective starter solenoid.
Adjusted brakes up. This solved the "one-pump" syndrome. Rechecked LR wheel
bearing. No change. Tested radiator cap. Worn, only 4#s pressure! Switched it
to overflow tank and installed 13#, recirculating cap on radiator. Didn't
solve hot idle problem.
Pierre, South Dakota. Point gap adjusted and distributor cam lubed.
Glendive, Montana. Sticking needle and seat freed
Helena, Montana. Sticking needle and seat freed, again. No further trouble
during the trip.
Early in the trip the turn signal indicator light on the stalk burned out.
Also, early in the trip it was noted that the speedometer needle was
twitching slightly. Sometimes this is normal and sometimes it is an
indication of speedometer or speedometer cable failure to come in the future.
The twitching eased up a bit and all was well during the trip.
The cooling irritation continued throughout the entire trip (it never became
critical); although, once into cooler weather it was never a concern. EG ran
fine at speed but ran hot at idle. Not normal for standard 998. Will need