Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

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Philip Ente
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Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#1 Post by Philip Ente » May 19th, 2020, 6:41 pm

I posted below about going to Piedmont in June but the feedback I am getting is contradictory, and there is the possibility of being quarantined if there is a cova relapse.

So- any ideas for a road trip in the USA. I am strictly a bicoastal guy and so maybe I should see the real USA / do an Easy Rider

Places to go where people may actually be out and restaurants open? Someone said Texas is pretty open.

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Randy Bowman
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#2 Post by Randy Bowman » May 19th, 2020, 7:36 pm

We've had several couples come in over the last three weeks, who are taking a Covid drive around the US. Last week was a couple from Michigan that just packed bags and started driving with little agenda, decided to hit wine country but the only wine they could find outside a grocery store was us. Today's couple flew from San Diego to Boston to meet and accompany friends moving to Seattle in the friend's motor home. They drove across the US to San Diego, picked up the couple's car and are now following the friends to Seattle. All the state and federal parks were closed but they still found a lot of interesting places to see/visit and traffic was very light. They said San Francisco was the deadest, dirtiest city they have seen on the trip. They also mentioned having the motor home was boon, since it had a bathroom, shower and beds when all the motels were all closed or seized by the states for guaranteeing the homeless.

Restaurants are opening in the central valley in CA and Napa will be opening by June first. Seems the counties away from the coast and big cities have weathered the pandemic better. We have acquaintances in Montana and Wyoming who say those states' remote areas are open and the more populated areas are opening up.
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#3 Post by Mich@el Ch@ng » May 19th, 2020, 7:38 pm

Philip Ente wrote:
May 19th, 2020, 6:41 pm
I posted below about going to Piedmont in June but the feedback I am getting is contradictory, and there is the possibility of being quarantined if there is a cova relapse.

So- any ideas for a road trip in the USA. I am strictly a bicoastal guy and so maybe I should see the real USA / do an Easy Rider

Places to go where people may actually be out and restaurants open? Someone said Texas is pretty open.
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#4 Post by M. Taylor » May 19th, 2020, 7:52 pm

Native Texan, live in Austin now. Texas is relatively open — 50% capacity at restaurants, though some are still being more cautious. Done lots of road trips. Where are you coming from?
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Philip Ente
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#5 Post by Philip Ente » May 19th, 2020, 8:06 pm

M. Taylor wrote:
May 19th, 2020, 7:52 pm
Native Texan, live in Austin now. Texas is relatively open — 50% capacity at restaurants, though some are still being more cautious. Done lots of road trips. Where are you coming from?
Thanks,
Would fly to some large city from Santa Barbara and then rent a car.
Been to Dallas once and was not too impressed. What is life in Austin like? any nearby road trips?

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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#6 Post by ClarkstonMark » May 20th, 2020, 7:03 am

Northern Michigan (Traverse City etc) is opening this weekend. They could use your tourist money. Some good Riesling, chenin blanc and sparkling wine is produced up there.
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Josh Grossman
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#7 Post by Josh Grossman » May 20th, 2020, 7:17 am

ClarkstonMark wrote:
May 20th, 2020, 7:03 am
Northern Michigan (Traverse City etc) is opening this weekend. They could use your tourist money. Some good Riesling, chenin blanc and sparkling wine is produced up there.
Pictured Rocks is one of the most beautiful places I've been--just make sure the black flies aren't out.

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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#8 Post by ClarkstonMark » May 20th, 2020, 9:37 am

Josh Grossman wrote:
May 20th, 2020, 7:17 am
ClarkstonMark wrote:
May 20th, 2020, 7:03 am
Northern Michigan (Traverse City etc) is opening this weekend. They could use your tourist money. Some good Riesling, chenin blanc and sparkling wine is produced up there.
Pictured Rocks is one of the most beautiful places I've been--just make sure the black flies aren't out.
Yes it is, great hiking and kayaking - went there a couple years ago and had perfect weather one day out of 3 - luckily the day we went kayaking. Might head up there again this summer or fall.
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#9 Post by Scott Brunson » May 20th, 2020, 11:12 am

Charleston beaches and parks are open. Restaurants have lots of outdoor seating, and inside seating at 50%.
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#10 Post by M Mager » May 20th, 2020, 11:33 am

ClarkstonMark wrote:
May 20th, 2020, 7:03 am
Northern Michigan (Traverse City etc) is opening this weekend. They could use your tourist money. Some good Riesling, chenin blanc and sparkling wine is produced up there.
Great place to visit and decompress (well, at least in summer...). Growing up, my wife's family had a cabin up on Glen Lake. She took me to the area for the first time a couple years ago. Stayed at a great little place in Empire right on Lake Michigan. From a wine perspective, the bubbles were definitely the highlight (and L Mawby was the highlight among the bubbles).

We were supposed to be visiting TC again this summer. I'm currently registered for the 1/2 Ironman event there at end of August. I suspect that event will end up being cancelled; however, even if it doesn't, I probably won't be going there. Would require air travel for us from Seattle, and I'm just not feeling the need for absorbing that risk right now for purely discretionary activity. Suspect we won't be getting back there until 2021.

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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#11 Post by Dan Hammer » May 20th, 2020, 11:55 am

Philip Ente wrote:
May 19th, 2020, 8:06 pm
M. Taylor wrote:
May 19th, 2020, 7:52 pm
Native Texan, live in Austin now. Texas is relatively open — 50% capacity at restaurants, though some are still being more cautious. Done lots of road trips. Where are you coming from?
Thanks,
Would fly to some large city from Santa Barbara and then rent a car.
Been to Dallas once and was not too impressed. What is life in Austin like? any nearby road trips?
Just west of Austin is Texas Hill Country. Fredericksburg is a cute town to spend half a day. https://www.visitfredericksburgtx.com/
A few hours west is Marfa. I known people that like this town. I wasn't thrilled. https://www.visitmarfa.com/
On the way to / from Marfa, stop in Alpine to eat and shop. It's a shorter stop than Fredericksburg. https://visitalpinetx.com/

A couple of hours south is Big Bend National Park. https://www.nps.gov/bibe/index.htm This is a very remote park.
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#12 Post by Andrew Kotowski » June 5th, 2020, 9:18 pm

Right there with you.

Left Seattle, went to Portland. Modern Times delivered $125 worth of beer I ordered, which I drank while smoking two slabs of spare ribs in a file cabinet.

Drove down to Gold Beach, OR for a few days, and met up with Glenn Levine for pizza in Bandon. Sat outside, no masks and plenty of beer.

Down in the East Bay (Walnut Creek) and people are pretty militant about masks, even at the gas stations. Social distancing at Russian River Brewing, and everybody had masks.

Will be hanging around here for a week (visited Flannery today) and then heading down to San Diego. Then, it’s East to San Antonio, followed by New Orleans and then Alabama and Kentucky. Happy to check in as I go.
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#13 Post by adam landa » June 6th, 2020, 6:42 am

Andrew...Nashville is open at 50% capacity with lots of options as you come up through Alabama to Kentucky.

I'm not a beer guy, but some good micro places here you may want to check out.

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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#14 Post by Andrew Kotowski » June 6th, 2020, 8:17 am

adam landa wrote:
June 6th, 2020, 6:42 am
Andrew...Nashville is open at 50% capacity with lots of options as you come up through Alabama to Kentucky.

I'm not a beer guy, but some good micro places here you may want to check out.
Have been thinking about Nashville - am a huge Sean Brock fan and would like to try Joyland. Sam Ross was also based out of the Nashville Attaboy, and I love making his cocktails. Have made at least 50 Paper Planes and it would be nice to see how the master makes it :)

Still figuring things out and watching the news, though, as I’d like to play it as safe as possible.
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#15 Post by Andrew Kotowski » June 6th, 2020, 8:25 am

For those of you considering Napa, note from a friend on 5/27:

“The restaurants are just starting to open, slowly. Only a handful so far. It is very dead around here. Options for dining in would be very limited, but they sure as hell could use the business.

Plenty of hotel space, and probably for a deal too. Occupancy is well under 5% right now“
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#16 Post by David Baum » June 8th, 2020, 11:07 pm

Andrew Kotowski wrote:
June 5th, 2020, 9:18 pm
Right there with you.

Left Seattle, went to Portland. Modern Times delivered $125 worth of beer I ordered, which I drank while smoking two slabs of spare ribs in a file cabinet.

Drove down to Gold Beach, OR for a few days, and met up with Glenn Levine for pizza in Bandon. Sat outside, no masks and plenty of beer.

Down in the East Bay (Walnut Creek) and people are pretty militant about masks, even at the gas stations. Social distancing at Russian River Brewing, and everybody had masks.

Will be hanging around here for a week (visited Flannery today) and then heading down to San Diego. Then, it’s East to San Antonio, followed by New Orleans and then Alabama and Kentucky. Happy to check in as I go.
Plenty open in San Diego. Feel free to check in

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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#17 Post by George Hejna » June 9th, 2020, 6:23 am

I think I might give it some time to see how opening effects overall numbers. Everybody is opening at different speeds and results vary.
For example Texas had the highest number of hospitalizations over the last 7 days then it has ever had. That would worry me. It is also going to be interesting to see how the protests effect the numbers.

I know lots of people that want to get out and travel including myself but I think it better to be overly cautious at this point. I think it would really suck to have quarantined for all this time only to get Covid now.

YMMV,

George

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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#18 Post by Andrew Kotowski » June 13th, 2020, 6:01 pm

San Diego appears to have missed a couple of steps in the reopening process. Gaslamp was packed with people, with very few people wearing masks. I’ve noticed that the staff are pretty spot-on with PPE and following procedures (I.e. The Corner” on Laurel was awesome); it’s the guests that are potato heads. Made it out to Solana Beach to catch up with Michel, Alpine to try Duet and Nelson from the tap and Spring Valley to try Cali Comfort BBQ (loved the “Behind the Smoke” podcast!)
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#19 Post by Andrew Kotowski » June 28th, 2020, 6:34 am

This thread dropped on my "Your Posts" lists and I forgot about it. Flying home out of Louisville, KY today, here are some additional thoughts in the event they help.

* Restaurants are all over the place with how they deal with the impact of COVID. I went to a place in Louisville that took my temp and recorded my contact info, another one that spaced tables at 12', one in San Diego that had built plexiglass partitions between tables and then a couple that hadn't quite got the memo. Common themes are servers wearing PPE, but most of the public ignoring. I wore my mask to the table and then when/if I got up to use the restroom. In general, 3 out of 4 people did not wear masks at all.
* Hotels do not have room cleaning service, partly due to a desire to avoid contact, partly due to the fact that that getting people to work is difficult given unemployment and stimulus. I have heard from multiple people (restaurants included) that people can make more money and avoid COVID by sitting at home. Appears to be a legit issues, especially on the restaurant side.
* Few attractions have been open. Distilleries in KY are closed, as were most of the places i wanted to check out (Country Music Hall of Fame, etc.). Assumed as much going in, but not a lot of flexibility on dates. I did hit Mammoth Cave in KY, but you absolutely need to reserve tickets online, as they've regulated how many people are allowed in. Assuming this is standard for national parks.
* I've avoided bars like the plague, as I haven't seen any enforcing Social Distancing or masks. This was a common theme across the country.

I've spent considerably more time in my hotel than out of it, which is a bummer... but I'm not trading cocktails for COVID if I can help it.
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#20 Post by Michael Feldman » June 28th, 2020, 6:47 am

As a physician myself and Covid 19 rates going back up in all but 2 states, my advice would be to hold off on a road trip for the foreseeable future.

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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#21 Post by Jim Brennan » June 28th, 2020, 7:25 am

Bars need to close. Too highly correlated with stupid behavior.

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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#22 Post by Brian Tuite » June 28th, 2020, 7:40 am

Unnecessary travel IMO is irresponsible considering COVID19 is no way near contained/controlled. But what do I know, you’re the doctor.
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Re: Road trip in the USA in the Covid world

#23 Post by c fu » July 6th, 2020, 12:34 am

Andrew Kotowski wrote:
June 13th, 2020, 6:01 pm
San Diego appears to have missed a couple of steps in the reopening process. Gaslamp was packed with people, with very few people wearing masks. I’ve noticed that the staff are pretty spot-on with PPE and following procedures (I.e. The Corner” on Laurel was awesome); it’s the guests that are potato heads. Made it out to Solana Beach to catch up with Michel, Alpine to try Duet and Nelson from the tap and Spring Valley to try Cali Comfort BBQ (loved the “Behind the Smoke” podcast!)
how disappointing was the Green Flash Duet and Nelson? :D. (the prior owners of Alpine are creating a new brewery and taking over the Alpine space this month!)
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