A road-tripper's guide to Second Life!

November 3, 2020

I just finished posting a page about Corsica and its drive guides, and Iintend to get Nautilus and the drive guides for it posted in the next few days. After that, all my back log of info will be on the site and I can get back to traveling again :)

I also made changes and re-organized the full site navigation in the page footer so it makes a bit more sense. I need to re-write the html and css for the navigation too, so it will display better on smaller screen sizes. I plan to do this along with the Nautilus updates.

November 3, 2020

I've been away from Secong Highways and Second Life for awhile, due to a busy life and most recently some medical issues, but I'm back now and finally getting around to posting the drive guides for Corsica and Nautilus. I explored bolth several months ago, and these need to be shared with you!

July 3, 2020

June was a very busy month for me, and I didn't get any traveling or upates to this site done (except for a couple blog posts). I still have quite a large part of Route 12 to finish, and I need to create and post the drive guides for Circuit-La-Corse and Route 11.

The last few days I re-watched the Anime series "Kino's Journey - The Beautiful World" on Hulu, and its got me all ready to start traveling again =^.^= The main character is a young woman who explores her world, traveling on a Motorcycle; I can definitely relate! The 12 episode series is beautifully drawn and animated, and it's a very unique tale; I highly recommend it. Unfortunately the show is expiring in about a week on Hulu, which is what prompted me to watch it again before its gone. I'm sure it can be found other places.

June 13, 2020

So a couple years ago I bought a very pretty mesh scooter, but soon discovered it went too fast, was hard to control and was terrible on sim crossings. I stopped trying to ride it and just put it on display in my home, but after the success I had recently with changing Movement at Region Crossing to "Stop", I decided to take a look at it again, and this time, I actually read the users's manual, lol.

This scooter, which is a Sau Lamb (can't find it on Marketplace, but is still available inworld), has a ton of configurations you can make. I delved deep into the menus and was able to fine tune things like the speed of each gear, turning speed, how much it leaned into turns, etc. I'm still tinkering with settings, but I think I have finally found the replacement for my old Scooty that I've been looking for, and it was right there in my home already *blushes*

The point I'm tryingto get at is that most modern vehicles in SL have lots and lots of configurations you can make, so if your vehicle doesn't perform as desired, you may be able to turn that lemon into the purrrrrfect highway cruiser. Read the user guide; I did!

June 8, 2020

I just bought myself a cute vintage Fiat 500. It's not a scooter, but it is fun and easy to drive. Unfortunately, like most modern vehicles, it doesn't handle sim crossings very well. My GF was with me at the time, and she found some information online about improving sim crossings.

There is a Firestorm viewer setting called Movement at Region Crossing that you can use to make you pause at a crossing until the next sim is ready for you, rather than barreling into the next sim uncontrollably and then jerking back to where you were (or worse - see the Sim Crossings section of my tips for travelers). You can read how to change your setting here, along with some pretty good information about how the feature performs and compares to the usual "rubber band" behavior at sim crossings.

Setting my Movement at Region Crossing to "Stop" did help this little Fiat out a lot, as it did with my Amphicar, my new sailboat and probably most of my vehicles. I'm not convinced the Fiat will replace old Scooty though, as I really love having the open road around me as I travel. I guess I bought the Fiat because it's so cute! Oh, and I have a modern Fiat 500 in RL =^.^=

May 30, 2020

Started Route12 today!

Here is the update I promised on the Vacanza wearable scooter: after riding it on Circuit La Corse, Route 11, and part of Router 12, I can say I'm not as impressed or as enthusiastic about it as I was when I first got it. It's still just as cute, and easy to drive, but because it's wearable, it acts a lot like when your avatar walks or runs. If you bump into things, like bumps in the road, you often hear that bumping sound, just like when walking your avatar up some stairs. That gets a little annoying after awhile. It also stops abruptly, because your avatar has stopped "walking". If you've ever run down steep inclines, you've probably noticed how your avatar bounces high and almost flies down the hill as if you were on the moon, and this scooter will do the same thing on hilly roads.

I'm not trying to bash this one vehicle; I still think it's a nice little scooter, and the problems I mentioned are probably inherent to all wearable vehicles. This is the first one I've tried, or at the very least the first I've ridden long distances, so I don't have a lot of experience to draw on. I'm still happy to have the Vacanza scooter in my inventory of vehicles, and it will be a great back up if I get stuck somewhere with no rez zone nearby. It also comes with a static display version, which looks great in my home :)

Still seeking a good replacement for old Scooty.

May 23, 2020

I rode all of Route 11 today, including its one side road. Route 11 is not terribly long, so this wasn't much of a feat to ride all at once.

May 17, 2020

Rode the four Circuit-La-Corse side roads today. They were all pretty short, hilly and easy to ride. I'll try to post the drive guides soon. Now on to Route 11 on the western side of Corsica.

May 16, 2020

Started and rode most of Circuit-La-Corse today! As shown on this map, Circuit-La-Corse makes a large loop around a major part of the eastern half of Corsica. There are also four side roads that cut across the interior, to meet up again with the main loop of the road. Oddly, all 4 of these roads are also identified as Circuit-La-Corse, which makes it a little hard for me to identify them. I'll explore those 4 roads tomorrow.

May 15, 2020

Today I finally made the decision to retire my old mint green scooter, aka "Scooty".

I bought Scooty way back in 2009, and the reason I've kept it so long is because it's great on Sim Crossings! Despite its age, it still looks surprisingly good for a pre-mesh item, although not as nice as modern mesh vehicles. The good news is, I found a great replacement!

I bought myself a Vacanza wearable scooter from What Next. It's super cute, reasonably priced, has some great color options, and best of all, it crosses sims almost as well as my old Scooty. Because it's wearable, you don't need to be at a rez zone to start using it. On the downside, you can't have a passenger ride with you. Overall I'm pretty happy with it, I highly recommend it, and I intend to take it on its maiden voyage tomorrow on Circuit-La-Corse.

I'll let you know how everything goes!

May 09, 2020

I FINALLY DID IT!   I finally embarked on, and completed, my big sailing trip from Satori to Corsica *big smiles*.

I've never done anyhting like this before, so this is a big deal for me! Plus, it was the first time I was able to sail from a continent that I've already explored, to a continent I had never been to, and the next road on my list =^.^=

Unfortunately there is no accompanying guide to go along with this trip, because there is no clear cut path with regular rez zones when you get out in the seas of Second Life, but I can give you a general description. I had bought myself a lovely new sailboat for the trip, but it didn't handle the sim crossings in the Bingo strait very well, so I switched to my cute lil Amphicar, and sail-drove the rest of the way (which is much more appropriate for a Road traveler like me anyway! :)

I started in the large bay in the northwestern part of Satori, sailing north until I got into the Bingo Strait. From there I headed east until I got to the end of sailable water (no more sims further east) and headed north into the Blake Sea. I kept sailing north and northwest as I was able to, sailing around islands and land masses. I slowly made my way around Nautilus and finally found a channel that led to Corsica. The world map helped a LOT along the way.

I finally came ashore on Corsica right next to a section of a road called Circuit-La-Corse. I wasn't able to drive the Amphicar from the water to the road (which would have made the trip very complete), so I had to fly the last 25 meters, but it was close enough! I also found a rez zone and intersection a very short distance from where I came ashore, so the whole trip was a major success!

Now on to Circuit-La-Corse and Corsica. Hi Ho Scooty, AWAY!

May 08, 2020

I'M BAAAAACK! Did you miss me?

I've been super busy and lots of things have been keeping me from my travels in SL, and my blog here on Second Highways, including tech issues with my development web server. A system update apparently over-wrote all of the configuration files for the server software, so the Second Highways development site wasn't working at all. It's pretty dis-heartening when you want to work on a project, but NO, STOP, you have to fix something else first. To make matters worse, it had been two or three years since I last configured the server, so yeah, I couldn't remember how to do it. My busy second life made it much easier to not fix.

Anyway, I finally found the time and will power to fix it, so I am back up and running

Big plans for tomorrow!

September 08, 2019

As I mentioned in a previous post, I'm currently planning a sailing trip from Satori to Corsica, which is the home of Route 11 and the next continent for me to explore. I've been doing a lot of research for the trip, and I now know that my plan CAN be done, and I know how I'm going to do it!

I plan to start at a Map Kiosk on Route 8. I would love to be able to drive from there to the bay, but I didn't see any road access when I was scouting around during my initial planning. However, its just a short flight over to the bay from the map kiosk. From there I will rez my lil Amphicar at the Little Sea Rez Zone. I'll use the Amphicar at first to get out of the bay, as my Oceanic sail boat is a bit large for some parts of the bay. After leaving Satori bay, I'll sail east to the Bingo Strait Rez Zone, and then rez my sail boat and transfer to it. From there I'll sail east to the Blake Sea! =^.^=

I had to re-learn how to use my sailboat, since its been quite awhile since I've used it, but I got it all figured out yesterday, and so the last piece of the puzzle was figuring out if Corsica really does connect to Nautilus. Satori and Nautilus together form a mega-continent with water all around them, the Bingo Strait between them and the Blake Sea to the east of Nautilus, so I only needed to know if there is a transcontinetal channel from Nautilus to Corsica. According to the Second Life Wiki, there are actually 3 channels between Corsica and Nautilus, and another between Corsica and Gaeta 5! I wish I had know that awhile ago; it would have been fun to sail from Gaeta 5 to Satori after I finished exploring Route 7, and before starting Route 8.

As far as I can tell, all the pieces are now in place, so now I just have to put some gas in the Amphicar, provision my sail boat, and pick a date to depart! :)

September 02, 2019

New drive guides posted for Jeogeot!

The guides are for Route 10, Northern Spur Road, Wellington Road, "The Shortcut", West Coast Road, The Moleway and Off-Road Route. Along with the previously posted guides for Routes 9 and 9A, this completes all of Jeogeot! This also completes all of my currently planned upgrades and updates to Second Highways. I still have plans for other new features and content, such as a photo gallery of interesting places, but those will come later this year.

As I mentioned in my previous blog post, I'm itching to get back out on the road again, so I'm very happy to get these last updates made! I'll be heading back out soon, and I'll keep you posted here.

See you on the road! =^.^=

September 02, 2019

Phase 2 of this site's face lift is complete!

I fixed a few visual styling, formatting and spacing issues left over from phase one of the site re-design, and more importantly, I added a new sub-navigation of related pages to most of the site. Now you won't need to use your back button quite so much while using the drive guides, or get lost in the site as you try to move through it. This new sub navigation, combined with the full site navigation in the footer will make it much much easier to use this site.

A few weeks ago I posted information about Jeogeot and Route 9, but didn't mention it here as I just intended to include it with phase 2 updates. I still need to post Route 10 and Jeogeot's other roads, but the traveling for them is already complete; I just need to translate my notes into usable drive guides.

I plan to get those guides posted quickly so I can get back to my travels! As much as I needed a break from traveling earlier this summer, I now can't wait to begin again. The recent camping trip with the SL Driver's Group has inspired me. I plan to actually "live" out on the road for awhile, rather than teleporting home after every drive. I have camping equipment now, and I might need to buy a camper too.

I also plan to buy a new sail boat as well because I would love to sail from Satori (a continent I've already explored) to my next continent, Corsica. I'm not sure if it can actually be done, but it looks like it might be possible on the Second Life world map I've looked at. It appears that Corsica is linked to Nautilus by a narrow water passage, and Nautilus is completely surrounded by water including the Blake Sea. Satori also appears to be connected by lots of water to Nautilus, so I'm hoping I can make a the trip completely on water. I'm sure I could ask some other travelers, but I prefer to explore and find these things out for myself!

My lil Amphicar would probably not be appropriate for such a long journey. The trip may take awhile and I might need to "sleep" on the boat a few times. I also love the peaceful quiet of sailing in Second Life; its almost as relaxing as the real thing. Also, like real life, it's a lot easier to get topless on a sailboat than in a car! ;)

August 16, 17 and 18

I'm posting this one retro-actively, because the weekend of the 17th, and the days following it, I was a bit sick and feeling very worn down and tired. I'm finally getting back to it and posting it now because... I got better!

Despite being tired, I wasn't going to miss the SL Driver's Group's annual camping event! It started on the evening of Friday, August 16, and lasted the entire weekend. This was my first trip with the Driver's Group, although I've run into them a few times out on the road while I've been doing my own travels. The trip started with a drive to the camp site, which took me approximately an hour, maybe a little less. Some drivers took longer, some a lot longer; Scooty and I kept passing cars left and right, especially at the sim crossings! It pays to be an old pro at this, and to have a good sim crossing vehicle and lightweight riding outfit like me! Ok, enough tooting my own horn, or even the horn on my scooter =^.^=

For the drive to the campsite, the event organizers provided a navigation HUD, which showed you when to turn, when rez zones were coming up, and even when there were hazards such as ban lines adjacent to the highway. This is part of why I was able to cruise so quickly through the course, and it made traveling a breeze. Personally, I prefer to just get on a road and explore, or maybe plan a trip first using road maps, but this was an enjoyable trip too. I highly encourage everyone to join the SL Driver's Group; they have events every week, and are a very active group of travelers.

While the navigation HUD used for this event was specific to the course we drove, it seems to me that I've heard of other, more generic travel aids availabe, such as a HUD to locate the nearest rez zone for you. I will look into this soon, and report back here. Or, you can just use my handy travel guides on this site! :D

August 11, 2019

Phase 1 of this site's face lift is finally complete! =^.^=

I still have more I want to do to the site, but the initial design is in place. I plan to add more photographs, and I need to replace the Info and Warning icons (in the drive guides) with better looking versions. I will probably convert them to SVG images. I also plan to add a related links section on most pages of the site, to further improve site navigation.

In the coming months I hope to add a photo gallery of interesting places and things that I've seen out on the road. I also want to enhance the Tips For Travelers section, add more photos to the continents and road pages, and refine the color scheme and style of the drive guides and other lists of links. Sooo much to think about when creating a site from scratch!

Please tell me what you think of the site, and/or the recent enhancements :) Send a notecard inworld to me (Bloo Ansar) if you are so inclined.

July 4, 2019

I finally completed all of Jeogeot! This one has been a bit slower for me, because I also recently moved in SL to a new sim, and that took a bunch of my time and attention. I put a few finishing touches on my new place recently, and then got back to my traveling. I'm not sure what day I finished Route 10 and Northern Spur road because I didn't post here like I should have, but today I finished up all the remaining side roads.

Included in today's travels was a short Linden Route called "Off Road Route", which literally is an off road route. I walked the length of it because it was too hilly and bumpy to drive with my lil scooty. I really only traveled it for completeness; I like to travel ALL of the Linden routes and roads on each continent, but unless you're documenting the continents like me, this is one route you can skip and not miss a thing.

I have to admit that I'm beginning to weary a little bit from my travels. Don't get me wrong, I love traveling, and I love documenting my travels for Second Highways, but everyone needs some variety in their Second Lives. Variety is what drove me to this project in the first place! I plan to take a bit of a break from my road trips and work on making improvements to the Second Highways website. I've added enough content now that I can see what is working, and what needs improvement. I also plan to add features that I've envisioned from the start.

The visual design of Second Highways also needs work, as I created the bare minumum it needed at first, just to start gettting the site built. I want to enhance the home page especially, and move the current introduction content to be its own sub page. I also plan to add a site map navigation in the footer area of each page. I want the important info to be as easy to find as possible.

Today while riding on Wellington Road, I came across a Hub owned by the Linden Road Community, which is a group that describes themselves this way: "We are a group of mainland landowners that want to make mainland better together by using the resources already provided, such as the SLRR and Linden Road system, Airways and Seaways!" These people are obviously kindred spirits, and I would like to become involved with them, and let them know of the existence of Second Highways. I'm hoping this site will be a valuable resource to their members, just like I hope its valuable to anyone interested in traveling in Second Life.

My vanity is making me want to give the site a face lift and make it look better before I introduce myself to them, so this is also part of my desire to take a break and work on it *blush*. To be honest though, it has been my plan for the last couple of months to finish Jeogeot, then work on improving the site, but the need to do so seems even more needier now! *giggles*

May 26, 2019

I just completed the loop of the continent of Jeogeot on Route 9! My favorite part of the ride was Deongseo Tunnel, a lengthy underwater tunnel, which was a new feature I hadn't encountered on previous continents. I love looking for those new features everytime I go to a new continent. Jeogeot also brought back and old fave that I hadn't seen since Heterocera; turnouts on the roadside for rez zones. I'll post a pic of one with the Route 9 drive guide if you aren't sure what I mean.

Another landmark I enjoyed seeing was Lordshore Bridge, a large, majestic suspension bridge that looks a bit like the Golden Gate (but not exactly). I'll post a pic of it too. Now its on to Route 10!

April 28, 2019

I just made some modifications to the site navigation, and made a navigational index page for all the road guides to make it easier to find the important stuff on this site =^.^= After I complete Routes 9 and 10, I want to start making some visual and functional impreovements to the site itself. I wanted to get enough of a basic site design built first, so I could get the backlog of content I had added, and then go back and improve the visuals and navigation. Just think of it as very slow progressive development *blushes*

April 28, 2019

Wooooooo! I finally got all the Route 8 drive guides done and posted to the site! Satori is a big continent, and I had a lot of material to cover in the guides. I also had to makes sure I had gotten the routing of all the teleport tunnels and billboards all correct. Sometimes the notes I take while I'm out on the road aren't always as complete as they should be.

Getting the Route 8 info posted took me longer than expected, but now I'm free to move on! This is an important milestone for me too, because when I first started this project, and before I had even thought of Second Highways, I started my earliest travels on Route 8. It was only afterwards that I decided to travel all of the road Routes in numerical order.

I hadn't documented much of my tavels on Route 8 the first time around, so I had to re-ride it again after completing Route 7. Now that I'm done with Route 8, I feel like this project is finally moving on to roads and continents I've never seen before... and that's because it is!

I'm super excited to begin the next phase of my travels, and excited to bring them to you! Now lets hit the road; its on to Routes 9 and 10 and the Continent of Jeogeot!

March 24, 2019

Just uploaded a page about Satori in the continents section! Will try to get the drive guides up soon too.

March 23, 2019

The continent of Satori is in the can!! Woohoo! I finished Routes 8A and 8B today, which completes all of Satori, and now I just have to get the drive guides posted.

Route 8A was a bit laggy and busy today, and I saw lots of other travelers. Not sure if they were members of the Drivers of SL group on their weekly drive, or GTFO enthusiasts, or just tourists like me, but was great to see other drivers. Satori is definitely where you should go if you want to see fellow travelers.

I also discovered a no-tell motel on Route 8A called Ritha's Hotel where you can rent one of 12 skybox rooms for 15 minutes (really?!), 30 minutes (wham, bam, thank you maam), 60 minutes or 2 hours. I was amused enough to check out the lobby, but I didn't see any of the rooms. There was a creepy guy who showed up in the lobby after I went in, and I thought sure he was going to IM me, so I didn't hang around to take a peek at a room. Maybe I'll have to go back again sometime... you know, to get some rest while out on the road! =^.^=

I'll be posting the Route 8 guides as soon as I can.

March 16, 2019

I finally finished my tour and research on Route 8! It's a long road, and had tons to distract me from riding straight through. If you're into the GTFO game, then Route 8 and Satori is a great place for you. The GTFO world headquarters is located on this road too, and while I don't play the GTFO game, it makes me very happy to see people making use of SL's roads. I enjoyed Route 8 simply as a tourist, and I actually saw five other travelers today too.

February 20, 2019

I just completed a tour of Route 8C; normally I wouldn't have ridden a Route out of order, but I kept running into sim restarts on Route 8, so I backtracked back to the intersection of Route 8C and rode it. I also rode Old Wagon Road, all .42 Kilometers of it! LOL

February 18, 2019

I just published new content to the site: a page about the continent of Gaeta 5, and travel guides for Routes 7, 7A and 7B! I finished my tour of Gaeta 5 about 3 weeks ago, including a non-stop trip around the perimeter of the continent on Route 7 with my wonderful little Platypus amphibious car :) The Platypus is based on the real life Amphicar, and I used it to drive both the submerged sections and dry land sections of Route 7. This trip was a lot of fun, and I hope you will try it out as well.

Now on to the continent of Satori, and Route 8! =^.^=

February 18, 2019

This is my first blog post for Second Highways! This project started in the spring of 2018, and Second Highways went live online on January 1st of 2019, so it was about time I get the blog going too! To expedite things, I decided I would create the blog posts by manually editing html, until I can eventualy get some sort of automated blog system in place on the site. You, dear readers, won't notice much of a difference either way, so I decided this was the easiest way to get the blog up here as soon as possible!

I started the Second Highways project with a tour of Heterocera and Routes 1-6 in April of 2018, and completed the continent by the end of summer of that same year. I then put my travels on hold for awhile as I began to create this site, and its content. I was finally able to begin traveling again in January, and explored Gaeta 5 and Routes 7, 7A and 7B. While I enjoy bringing Second Highways to you, I enjoy traveling even more!!

I hope you will enjoy this site, and it will inspire you to travel the many highways of second life too :)

Let's hit the road!

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