Crescent City, CA – Roseburg, OR
Today we leave California. It took us three weeks just to travel from the heavily protected southern border to the invisible one to Oregon. Hadn’t there been a large sign we would have certainly missed it. We loved the vast variety of different types of landscape in this state. The various deserts, coastal beaches, mountain ranges, green rolling hills with trees here and there, the monumental forests of sequoias and redwoods that make you feel so small especially when you consider that they were around at the time of the Roman empire. And now we are looking forward to Oregon.
The first thing we liked was the price for gas. You save almost a Dollar on a gallon of diesel. 28 miles per gallon is the average consumption of the 2.5 l diesel engine but still we have to it fill up every 2 to 3 days. So the Oregon prices are most welcome.
For the first time I found a health warning regarding gasoline fumes. In France they make you breath the gas fumes when you fill up your tank. They have basically the same pumps but they make the owners remove the little levers that you can fix the handle with. In other words you have to stand next to the tank and push down the handle the whole time to make the pump work. I have never quite figured out why the French do this, maybe to prevent that you light up while you are at the pump, I do not know, but it annoys me every time I have to buy gas.
Today we counted 12 people who yelled at us, waved at us or just said something about the van. People are alwas very happy and friendly and it does not bother us any more like it did in the beginning of our trip. In Rosebud a car followed us for a while and when we stopped a lady got next to us and opened the window. She was around forty, nice face with dark hair and big sunglasses. “I was following you for a while because I wanted to ask you, where you got that car?”
“Oh no. I have been calling Volkswagen in Canada, but they don’t have it and over here they can’t get it either. Germany, ha? I wonder if you could ship it over?
“We have to leave the country after one year – with the car. We got a special permit from the EPA but it’s only valid for one year. After that we got to go.”
“Well too bad. I just hope they bring it over here. Is it electric?”
“Oh no, you wouldn’t get very far with electricity. It’s a diesel”
“That’s even better. Well, thanks for the information. Have a nice day. Bye.”
There was a study in Germany the other day claiming that modern diesel engines are environmentally more efficient than electric cars. Over their lifetime the CO2 production of a diesel is smaller than a battery powered vehicle. So that’s nice to hear that we are even environmentally correct on the road. A trip like ours would be not possible with batteries. In the big metropolitan areas of the west and east coast, New York, L.A. and San Francisco it would perhaps be possible. On the other hand how long do you want to wait until your car is fully charged, and where do you go when you don’t have your own garage with at least a 380V plug. Ok there are apps with battery charging stations but will there be a free for you and most of all will it fit your car? For overland trips electricity won’t probably be an option for a long time. Diesel hybrids make a lot more sense. Electric cars will probably be only an option for short range transportation.
What else is going on in Oregon? The speed limit on freeways is 65 but most people drive at 75. The advertised fine for littering is 5000+ $, the record so far and no bargain either.
Tonite we stay in a state park outside Rosebud on a river that is famous for white water rafting. I cannot look up the name because we do not have a signal. T-Mobile, AT&T and Verizon they are all weak in the mountains.