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Old 07-06-2012, 01:28 PM   #1
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2000 Mile Roadtrip: Nuts to take TJ?

I've had my 2004 TJ since January and have enjoyed it locally and on a few short (under 200 mile) trips to go camping. In mid-July I have a backpacking trip planned in Wyoming, which will entail a long roadtrip. I'm tempted to drive my Jeep, but am worried I'd be sorry on that long of a trip.

Has anyone taken long roadtrips in their TJ; and if so would you recommend it?


A little more info: I have a 2011 GMC pickup, which rides nicely on long trips. But I'm planning on trading it on a 2013 JKU and so I'm currently trying to limit the miles I put on it.

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Old 07-06-2012, 01:40 PM   #2
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Me the wife and our one dog at the time did 1800 miles in the jeep and it wasn't horrible. Not the nicest road tripping vehicle but by far not the worse ive used. We have a 2003, I'm 6'2 230 and didn't get cramped or sore in the seats

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Old 07-06-2012, 01:45 PM   #3
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Did 1500 miles in 100 plus degrees last Aug in 2000 TJ with 2.5, rode good, actually enjoyed the ride Houston Tx to Columbus, Ohio
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Old 07-06-2012, 01:49 PM   #4
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Old 07-06-2012, 02:26 PM   #5
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Ive done sub 1000 mile trips...the only thing I dont like about it is the limited fuel range and fuel cost I have in comparison to my other car. With that said however I find that its pretty comfortable and fun compared to most other vehicles as well.
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Old 07-06-2012, 02:37 PM   #6
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Did an indirect 3600 miles from Seattle to NYC in Jan of 2011. It's not the quietest or the most fuel efficient sled out there, but we had a blast. Did the trip over 6 days, so we also didn't kill ourselves either.

Check fluids before you go but otherwise enjoy. And take a great camera and tons of pictures.
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Old 07-06-2012, 02:50 PM   #7
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I did Denver to Couer D Alene a year ago...before my lift...and it wasnt bad. 17 hours though you are ready to be done, I think that would have been like that in any vehicle though. Now a few days ago I drove from CDA to Montana (5 hour drive) with no doors and a safari top and CRES net on. Going there was awesome!!! Weather was perfect so the drive wasn't bad. However coming back I battled head winds almost the entire way and it was a LONG 5 hours!!!! luckily no rain!
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Old 07-06-2012, 03:17 PM   #8
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Did a 1600 mile round trip once. I wouldn't do it again. Mud tires and the lift and the gas milage. Once we got there it was great but my trips are limited to 200 miles and down now.
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Old 07-06-2012, 04:04 PM   #9
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By yourself or with someone? I love to take road trips in my TJ and have made a few 700 trips from here to the coast by myself. However, if you have a passenger and they like to converse a lot it can be difficult at times especially with a soft top. Can be a bit noisy.
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Old 07-06-2012, 04:11 PM   #10
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I have driven from CA to Florida and back twice with my TJ. I do agree with SouthTJ about the noise level with a soft top having a conversation is difficult. But I really loved driving my jeep my seats are super comfy.
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Old 07-06-2012, 04:28 PM   #11
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Thanks for the responses so far.

Some additional info: I will be traveling alone, so conversation isn't a problem, but I do like to listen to audio books to pass the time. I'll have the hardtop on, for security reasons at the trailheads, if for no other reasons.

Gas mileage will stink either way. My truck get 16mph, so not much different regardless of which I choose.
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Old 07-06-2012, 04:29 PM   #12
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I would take mine, w/o the wife, as long as the AC works and the cruise control is working. Then again I would not do it in any vehicle if those two things were not working.
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Old 07-06-2012, 04:31 PM   #13
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I would take mine, w/o the wife, as long as the AC works and the cruise control is working. Then again I would not do it in any vehicle if those two things were not working.
AC and cruise are both good to go. The Dakota prairies are a long hot stretch, so those are big plusses headed west from MN.
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Old 07-06-2012, 04:36 PM   #14
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Trade in on the JKU first, and take that! I'm miserable in my TJ after 200 miles or so. I took a short trip in a buddy's JKU and was shocked at the difference; felt like riding in a town car. He's lifted and on 35's, too.
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Old 07-06-2012, 04:41 PM   #15
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I do it regularly, loaded to the gills with camping gear. Totally enjoyable, totally comfortable, even without cruise control.
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Old 07-06-2012, 04:43 PM   #16
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Trade in on the JKU first, and take that! I'm miserable in my TJ after 200 miles or so. I took a short trip in a buddy's JKU and was shocked at the difference; felt like riding in a town car. He's lifted and on 35's, too.
I was tempted to do that, but I really like the forthcoming commando green, which won't be available til September. (And there aren't any decent Rubicons around here. Most are MW3 editions and I don't want to pay 9000 for stuff I don't really want).
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Old 07-06-2012, 05:40 PM   #17
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Go for it. The best two ways to see this great country of ours is in a Jeep or on a Harley.
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Old 07-06-2012, 09:05 PM   #18
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I just got back from a 3500 mile round trip in my '97 TJ.
A few things you can consider before leaving.

If you haven't experienced 'Hood Flutter', the hood can do a crazy dance when you pass on-coming big rigs on the highway. There are several fixes for this - the only fix I can vouch for (because I did it) is replacing the stock hood catches with Drake Offroad turnbuckle style and really tighten them down - My hood was solid as a rock while the hood on my brothers JK was dancing around like crazy.

Fix some sort of mesh over the grille slots.

The soft top is screwed on to its own header bar.
From memory, there are 6 factory screws holding it on. This leaves some fairly substantial gaps between the screws. On the highway, my softtop started ballooning slightly where the gaps were and my passenger noticed dust blowing in when those big rigs went past.
I pulled the soft top back off its header and added 6 more screws to secure it a bit better. there are even places on the header where adding more screws has already been allowed for. (Actually, my soft top is off a later model, so not sure if that is true for stock '97 soft tops).

EDIT: I see you will be using your hardtop

Headwinds suck. If you have a tailwind - make the most of it. this is especially true if you have bigger tires.

I took the back seat out of my TJ to make a bit more room - also added a Bestop storage rack which was invaluable with the amount of junk I had. The storage rack does stop the front seats from leaning all the way back though - in case you want to stop and have a rest.

My trip was in some very hot areas and there were days when I had the sun constantly coming in the drivers side window so I ghetto-fabbed a tinted window which made a huge difference. This is a 'see through' sunshade product which is held on by static electricity. I cut it to shape (not too well) and just held it up to the window. Peeled it off when I got to major towns to see out better. You can still out with it on but not as well.
Instructions recommended spraying the window with water first but I didn't bother and it held up fine - this a pic of it installed on my right-hand-drive.
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Old 07-06-2012, 09:15 PM   #19
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Wesboy, thanks for those helpful suggestions.
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Old 07-06-2012, 09:32 PM   #20
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What's the screen on the grill for
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Old 07-06-2012, 09:48 PM   #21
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Go for it. The best two ways to see this great country of ours is in a Jeep or on a Harley.
Did both, the bike was better!

I drove a brand new JK from Detroit to L.A., it was more comfortable riding my motorcycle across country. It was fun in the Jeep, I don't want to do it again, I get the feeling I will though...

Both were better than going Greyhound!
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Old 07-06-2012, 10:07 PM   #22
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What's the screen on the grill for
Keep the bugs out.
It's easier to pick the giant mutant bugs off a screen on the grille than thru the slots when they end up on the radiator.
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Old 07-07-2012, 12:22 AM   #23
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I just recently did a Missoula to Seattle area drive, 10 hours or so, and 560 miles... not bad. Not fuel efficient, and if there are head winds... you're screwed... I had strong headwinds and up hill at one point and it sucked... otherwise not bad. I have neoprene seat covers so they got my back wet otherwise no problems. And I'm 6'2" and 210... so not small and no cramps...
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Old 07-07-2012, 12:23 AM   #24
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It's easier to pick the giant mutant bugs off a screen on the grille than thru the slots when they end up on the radiator.
Saves on food stops, too!
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Old 07-07-2012, 12:52 AM   #25
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Greetings from North Pole Alaska,
In 1982 I drove a 74 cj5 from Michigan to Fairbanks. In March, in a ragtop.
Nuff said. These plush modern day rigs, you should have no issue whatsoever, other then too much fun....
Enjoy and have a great evening....
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Old 07-07-2012, 01:29 AM   #26
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What is A/C and cruise control? we own JEEPS not sedans
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Old 07-07-2012, 02:10 AM   #27
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What is A/C and cruise control? we own JEEPS not sedans
What can I say, I bought it used and they came with it. Guess I'll have to use them
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Old 07-07-2012, 02:27 AM   #28
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I just came back from wyoming. It was beautiful. If you miss a chance to wheel there because you drove a highway barge your going to hate your self.
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Old 07-07-2012, 06:21 AM   #29
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going west

We take the jeep out west every year, fuel mileage sucks, ( 14 if we're lucky and have a good tailwind) but we consider it our camper/expedition vehicle. Last May our Moab trip clocked in at 4400 miles total. It's noisy, and dropping $50 every 185 miles are the pitfalls. The up side? When you get there you can wheel to some of the most spectacular spots in all of North America, in any one of the 11 western states.

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