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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
'Just arrived in Maryland last night. Took 11 days getting here, stopping to visit friends along the way. At least "nipped" into 15 states on our way here.

Saw gas prices ranging from our ridiculous California prices (was around $3.43 if I recall) to as low as $1.98, which we enjoyed on 2 occasions. Mostly about $2.25 to $2.50 for 87 octane. I was surprised to see that regular was 86 octane somewhere along the way.
Likewise, I was stunned (even though many of you have said this before) that the higher octane grades (89, 91) were separated by 30 cents or so between grades! It's only a dime separation typically in California. Go figure!

I'm sure there will be curiosity about MPG.... I haven't really made an effort to work towards good numbers, but I have recorded them diligently.
It seems that pushing hard in hilly areas (75+ MPH) would yield something close to 17.5, while the same speed on flatter regions go closer to 19.5. I started out trying a couple of tanks of 89 (vs. 87), but didn't see any noticeable difference (beyond the variance I might attribute to terrain & throttle). This didn't surprise me as much as the fact that the terrain had much more impact than speed did. I ran a few tanks in the early days at sub-65 MPH just for grins, and found that if it was hilly, that lower speed didn't mean squat....
I think our best run (at lower speed, but never all flat) was about 20.5. We might try to do some "efficiency" runs on the way back to California in October, just to see how much over 22 we can get. 'Did that on prior trips, but this time scheduled stops dictated we not "doddle".

Only 2 "issues" on the road. The first was a false alarm. Started getting an unusual "growl" down below.... 'was worried I had something going on with the tranny. I speculated to the wife that it MIGHT be tire noise, but I had never heard this kind of low, rumbling growl from regular road tires on what appeared to be a decent, fairly new pavement. I even pulled off to listen up & "exercise" in a parking lot. Got back going & an hour or so later all was well (when the pavement surface changed). Weird!
Second issue was real, but not serious. Wife noticed muffled 'tick' coming from front when idling (she was outside before I shut down engine). I couldn't hear from inside, but sure enough, there was a new noise (she's good at hearing those things). After close examination under the hood, I have a (driver's side) fan that's wearing out.... 'has some play at it's "axle". Not loose enough to worry about 'til I got out here. I'll probably fix before I leave for the return trip. I imagine I'll just have to replace the fan. I stopped by a dealer to pick up some wiper inserts & had him pull up the fan parts page (I forgot my manual at home :( ). 'Looks like it's just held on by a nut, so I'm not expecting it's going to be as simple as a "tighten the fastener" problem. No biggie; at 155K miles, you expect to have to replace a part or two along the way.

All else is running smooth & working well. BTW, I went ahead & picked up one of those Coleman 12V coolers, just to avoid the issue of filling with ice & having the bottom of the cooler always filled with some amount of water. I was reluctant, given poor reviews for these cheaper version (under $100 at Walmart); but as long as ambient temp is 'comfortable (i.e. 75 or 80 degrees), it works fine (is supposed to hold somewhere near 40 degrees below ambient). 'Thought I'd share that for anyone considering one of these.
The downside of course is that you have to take it in & plug it in at night (120/12V converter comes with it), but not having to fill with ice & drain water, plus the lighter weight w/o ice/water, makes it a winner in my book. This definitely would not work well however in a hot (ambient) environment.

Will try to post some pics of the sights along the way. Really enjoying our old reliable '06 RTL. Very happy with all the years she's given us & great service she continues to provide. :)
 

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Have fun!!!!thanks for the writeup!!
 

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Sounds like a great trip. I find the Ridge to be better than the Accord for road trip comfort. Aside from the more comfortable, upright seating position in the Ridge, it doesn't have a lack of passenger leg room like the Accord.
 

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Sounds like fun! Yep gas around here is $2.29 for regular and $3.09 for premium. Gouging at it's finest. Luckily we run regular. Be safe out there.
 
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