Posts from ‘Road Trip’

Chicago to Detroit

Rick’s ride to Michigan was this Chrysler 300 Glacier

Compared to most people, I do quite a lot of highway driving. Unlike most people, I usually do it in silence. That would probably bore most folks on the bi-weekly, two-hour trek down to my weekend farmette, but for me, it’s a welcome chance to clear my head and think about things that matter … like how I’d spend the vacation time I rarely take. But that quiet can become lonely on a trip as long as that from Chicago to Detroit.

But for longer drives, I have a different strategy. Before I even leave the garage, I plug in my stone-aged MP3 player (I am seriously tech resistant) that contains a collection of favorite road tunes and crank up the volume. Ready to travel from Chicago to Detroit.


My wife and kid and I are vegetarians, which can complicate road-trip dining. For non-vegan meatless meals, let me recommend the Country Sampler at Cracker Barrel. It’s just a plateful of not-especially-healthy side dishes, but they’re really good side dishes, and hey, we were on vacation.

My kid has been horse crazy for most of her 13 years. As a parent who is more or less responsive to the wants and needs of my child, I donated a precious week of vacation time to a spring-break, horse-country road trip.

As luck would have it, Consumer Guide’s long-term Nissan Pathfinder arrived right around the time I was setting up my out-of-office voicemail greeting. Our handsome red test vehicle came well equipped, though not quite loaded. (Getting lost in St. Louis is still pretty much my fault—what was life like before navigation systems?)

Sultans of Swing, Songs for a Long Drive

Is “Sultans of Swing” the greatest road song?

Ask five car guys, and you’ll likely get five different answers. Still, we asked. Here are best road songs per the members of the Consumer Guide review staff. If your favorite road tune isn’t on this list, be sure and tell us what it is. Also tell us if you still own a copy of that song on cassette or 8-Track–which would be pretty cool.

2011 Kia Optima, How to Pack a Car

Believe it or not, the 2011 Kia Optima’s trunk had no problem holding all this camping gear.

For decades, SUVs have been promoted as the essential vehicles for camping and any other rigorous outdoor sport. The marketers would have you believe that a normal sedan at Yosemite would be about as welcome as a Hummer at an Earth Day rally. I’ve driven SUVs and sedans on camping trips, and sedans are better.