Short trips, an alternate view - Fuelly Forums

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Old 01-06-2012, 09:07 AM   #1
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Short trips, an alternate view

In my evolution as a hypermiler and reduced fuel usage crusader I have tried my best to reduce the number of times I drive my car for short distance trips( 3 miles or less). I do this by combining multiple short trips into strategic groups or using another more efficient means of tranport ( motorcycle , bicycle, walking, ridesharing). In fact in looking at my garage totals I find that I drove my car 6744 total miles ( @28 mpg) in 2011 vs. 8745 miles on my motorcycle (@57 mpg). I also rode my bicycle about 400- 500 miles in 2011.

One of the things I find sometimes while reading posts by other members on their struggles with getting better fuel economy for their cars is that they have a very short commute. Why not walk in some cases or ride a bike ? I understand there are sometimes weather challenges, health issues or the need to trasport job tools in some instances but how often is this really the case? My challenge to all my brother and sister hypermilers is to examine their daily routines and seek opportunities to optimize their fuel usage through the reduction of short trips (driving alone and cargoless ) and replace it with a bike ride or walking. You will get better fuel economy, use less fuel and ( gasp! ) get some healthy exercise.
all the best, L&S
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Old 01-06-2012, 10:06 AM   #2
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Re: Short trips, an alternate view

Although my commute is only about 2 miles, walking and biking are not feasible. I need to be at work before sunrise, and have mostly 4 and 6 lane roads to get there, with no sidewalks. The last road to cross is a very busy 6 lane road (route 7) with no crosswalk. Its a safety issue to me. I don't want to end up as road pizza.
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Old 01-06-2012, 10:18 AM   #3
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Re: Short trips, an alternate view

No sidewalks or pedestrian ways? Not even a trail through the woods?

Sounds a bit like som of my nightmares when I was a kid.
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Old 01-06-2012, 10:33 AM   #4
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Re: Short trips, an alternate view

Not only is there no sidewalk, but the last 300 yards is a 6 lane highway surrounded by a 5 ft tall jersey wall, and no crosswalk.
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Old 01-06-2012, 11:08 AM   #5
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Re: Short trips, an alternate view

Jay, you are in the middle of one of the largest, busiest cities in the US...aren't you?
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Old 01-06-2012, 12:30 PM   #6
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Re: Short trips, an alternate view

Not the middle, the outlying edge.
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Old 01-06-2012, 01:41 PM   #7
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Re: Short trips, an alternate view

my drive to work is 35 minutes. I would love to be able to walk/run to work or even bike. I have recently gotten on a health kick and have been making great strides. I have an exercise bike that I use (I know, it kinda sucks)

I live way out but that is a big reason that I hypermile.

I may buy a bike and drive to a park to ride it (now that's ironic)
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Old 01-06-2012, 08:45 PM   #8
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Re: Short trips, an alternate view

It can be tough to find bike/walk friendly routes. Sometimes it's because we still look for car friendly routes and forget that a bike works better on different roads. Forget the freeway, or even the expressway, those are made for cars. Most of the best bike routes go through side streets, cut through alleys, take a left turn when there's always a way to trigger the signal light. Sometimes you just have to look for someone else riding a bike and watch where they go.
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Old 01-08-2012, 05:06 PM   #9
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Re: Short trips, an alternate view

I live in a small town, and needed to do some errands, bank, etc. So I walked. Maybe 3-4 miles, but its better for my health, and my carbon footprint. And I finished at the local coffee shop to reward myself.
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Old 01-10-2012, 06:12 PM   #10
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Re: Short trips, an alternate view

Way to go Slurp!
Before I retired my commute to work took about an hour for the 27 mile commute in the congested SF bay area traffic. When I rode my motorcycle it took about 40-45 minutes. I started my bicycle commuting by riding 14 miles from my house to the nearest Bay Area Rapid Transit ( BART ) station and then rode the electric train to the station near to where I worked. You can bring your bike onto the cars if you get there before or after peak commute time. It took about 1.5 to 1.75 hours. I finally worked up to doing the whole thing by cycling and it ended up taking about the same time ( but much more tiring). I felt great and was everybody's hero ( except for my wife who thought I was crazy )
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