The Great Escape

Pulling off a perfect weekend starts with a clean getaway

OUR FAVE SUMMER PHRASE "Road trip, baby." Whether your target is mountains, beaches, rivers, or—heck—Mexico or Canada, there's no need to fear the drive. Armies of innovators are fighting to pimp your ride for the ultimate in high-tech travel. We're talking state-of-the-art electronics and accessories that'll turn your vehicle into Dell on wheels, allowing you to tune in coast-to-coast satellite radio, download digital maps for every imaginable path, fire up some DVD action in the back, and haul enough tunes to stuff a music emporium (without fumbling a single CD). In other words, the journey just became as cool as the destination.

Road Trip Gear Review

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Road Trip Gear Review

Roam Theater » Get lost? Never again. The (A) GARMIN STREETPILOT 2610, a dash-mounted GPS, can nail your location to within 15 feet. ($1,400; 800-800-1020, Slide a DVD into (B) ALPINE's IVA-D300 MOBILE MULTIMEDIA STATION, connected to two (C)TME-M770 monitors (sold separately) mounted on the backs of the headrests, and your passengers can take in The Matrix. (IVA-D300 stereo, $1,500; TME-M770 headrest monitors, $650 each; 800-257-4631, Ten bucks a month for a subscription to XM SATELLITE RADIO, plus a (D) DELPHI XM SKYFI RADIO and Vehicle Kit, gets you 121 digital channels covering any music or news niche you desire. (SKYFi Radio, $100; Vehicle Kit, $70; 800-967-2346, The credit-card-size (E) APPLE IPOD MINI holds up to 1,000 songs on its four-gig hard drive and runs eight hours per charge—that's Denver to Yellowstone, buzzing on killer tunes all the way. ($249; 800-692-7753, Plug a svelte (F) ITRIP FM TRANSMITTER into your iPod and broadcast, say, a little Wham! over any unused FM frequency, which your car's radio will pick up. ($35; 615-399-7000,

Burning Rubber: our playlist for long drives »
» On and On / Jack Johnson » Hail to the Thief / Radiohead » Speakerboxxx/The Love Below / Outkast » Feast of Wire / Calexico » Elephant/ The White Stripes » Vespertine / Bjök » The Central Park Concert / Dave Matthews Band » The Soft Bulletin / The Flaming Lips » Car Wheels on a Gravel Road / Lucinda Williams » Odelay / Beck » Anthology / Vol. 1: Cowboy Man / Lyle Lovett » The Joshua Tree / U2 » Life's Rich Pageant / R.E.M. » Greatest Hits / Bruce Springsteen » Led Zeppelin IV / Led Zeppelin » A Decade of Hits 1969-1979 / The Allman Brothers Band » The Best of, Vol. 1 / Earth, Wind & Fire » Pink Moon / Nick Drake » Let It Bleed / The Rolling Stones » Highway 61 Revisited / Bob Dylan » The Sun Sessions / Elvis Presley

Unloading Dock

Road Trip Gear Review

UNLOADING DOCK »/b (A) SERENGETI's LASSEN TITANIUM DRIVERS GRADIENT shades are optimum for the road, with glass lenses, an amber tint that's darker up top to block glare, and featherweight titanium frames. ($180; 888-838-1449, So you packed your ride full but your swag still runneth over? Time to install a (B) THULE TERRAPIN. Think of this 13-cubic-foot trunk, which mounts to your trailer hitch, as a fanny pack for your ride. ($499; 800-238-2388, (C) ORTLIEB's BIG-ZIP DUFFEl ($165), a waterproof, full-zip, 8,543-cubic-inch carryall, and its modest cousin, the 3,051-cube (D) TRAVEL-ZIP ($150), are the road warrior's storage lockers. When there's no room inside the car, lash them to the roof—they'll survive thunderstorms and blizzards. (800-649-1763, PILOTI makes its (E) MULHOLLAND SHOES specifically for aggressive driving. Their spherical heels roll smoothly between pedals. ($75; 805-494-0756, Plug the eight-foot power cord to (F) IGLOO's KOOL MATE 40 into a car's AC outlet and—voilà—40 quarts of refrigeration for all your moveable feasts. ($129; 800-364-5566,

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