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Old 04-16-2013, 01:43 AM   #1 (permalink)
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The flattest state in America?

I really hate hills sometimes! I probably climb over 3,000 feet a day in elevation gain and loss. Hypermiling tip: consider moving to the gulf, Illinois, or Delaware. Kansas?

What is the US state that is the most flat?
Quote:
"Flattest Roads: Louisiana is the flattest state, though Florida and Illinois follow close behind. Louisiana is interesting because you can drive for 100 miles straight north and gain less than 100 feet in elevation. There's standing water on the sides of the road (and armadillo roadkill) just about everywhere in Louisiana. And speaking of flat, the Florida Everglades is probably the flattest region in the U.S. Illinois is also pancake-flat but, unlike Florida and Louisiana, it's not interesting at all."
The Best and Worst of the 50 States

But,
"If you measure flatness by the difference between the highest and lowest elevations, Kansas is 22nd, with Florida leading the way. If you measure it using elevation changes in 1-kilometer sections, it is 32nd, with Delaware the flattest."
Holy hotcakes! Study finds Kansas flatter than pancake / LJWorld.com

I grew up in Florida and can't imagine a flatter state. It does have rolling hills in the center. Since the experts can't agree on how to measure, so we probably won't get a definitive answer.

Much of the state south of Orlando is low-lying and fairly level; however, some places, such as Clearwater, feature vistas that rise 50 to 100 feet (15 – 30 m) above the water. Much of Central and North Florida, typically 25 miles (40 km) or more away from the coastline, features rolling hills with elevations ranging from 100 to 250 feet (30 – 76 m). The highest point in peninsular Florida, Sugarloaf Mountain, is a 312-foot (95 m) peak in Lake County. . . . The total area of Florida is 65,795 sq mi
(170,304 kmē).

Florida - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Florida's highest point is Britton Hill in Walton County - 345 feet (105 m) above sea level - and the lowest highpoint of any U.S. state. Florida has no mountains nor high hills. Therefore, when you consider elevation per area, my vote goes to Florida.

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Old 04-16-2013, 01:54 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I've heard you can get better fe in hilly country than flat.
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Old 04-16-2013, 03:14 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
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I've heard you can get better fe in hilly country than flat.
My Subaru cruses 60mph on the flat at 27-30 mpg. up a hill it gets 15-22 mpg. Down the same hill engine on coast it gets over 150mpg. (15+150)/2=82.4 mpg. If there are no reasons to stop at the bottom I love hills.
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Old 04-16-2013, 08:49 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by bestclimb View Post
My Subaru cruses 60mph on the flat at 27-30 mpg. up a hill it gets 15-22 mpg. Down the same hill engine on coast it gets over 150mpg. (15+150)/2=82.4 mpg. If there are no reasons to stop at the bottom I love hills.
2 / (1 / 15) + (1 / 150) =27.27mpg < 27-30mpg. You always have to climb up the same hill you went down, and Ideally, your average can only be double the mpg you had while going up the hill.

If your going to drive with load, your going to be varying your speed considerably. And if your going to coast down hill, well, your now your just doing P&G. And P&G on a level road will always get you better mpg than a steady cruise, with the exception of leanburn.

Level roads are also idiot proof. You just have to stay at your target mpg/speed, and your golden. You have tens of thousands of people everyday saving fractions of a gallon on the flat route and it adds up.
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Old 04-16-2013, 11:36 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I love hills. It was a real thrill coasting down the mountains coming back from Blacksburg. I actually had to use engine braking when I got close to 80 MPH behing a big rig. I get better mileage in hill country. Basically west of my house is hills while east is farily flat, but I use every elevation change by pulsing uphill and coasting downhill. I will allow slight drops in speed going uphill and recover downhill. In many cases I can extend my coasting by over 100 % even where the hills will not allow coasting at sustained speeds above 45 MPH.

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Old 04-16-2013, 01:52 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I've driven in hills extensively living in WV. The really steep mountains are an issue, but the rolling hills I almost always get better mileage as I can essentially "Pulse and Glide" using gravity instead of my speed. Some of the better coasts through western Maryland (Cumberland Area) and PA can last several miles.

When the hill gets too steep however, I have to eventually drop to 3rd to climb it (or at the very least, the torque converter will unlock) which drops efficiency. Then going back down it I simply go too fast to stay anything close to the speed limit, and that makes me not coast as long as a result of having to brake or using engine braking to slow my speed.
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Old 04-16-2013, 02:26 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sheepdog 44 View Post
If your going to drive with load, your going to be varying your speed considerably. And if your going to coast down hill, well, your now your just doing P&G. And P&G on a level road will always get you better mpg than a steady cruise, with the exception of leanburn.
Not necessarily. Depending on the grade, you could be driving closer to best BSFC on the uphills.

If we want to consider not the whole state, but sizeable areas within a state, then I'll vote for Nevada's Black Rock Desert as flattest. It's so flat that when water collects on parts of the playa in a wet spring, a good wind can move the resulting "lake" miles from one side to the other.
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:49 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Old 04-16-2013, 06:25 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Apparently none of you have been to North Dakota. It's FLAT. If there are more than three hills within a square mile, they make it a state park.
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Old 04-16-2013, 06:37 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brucey View Post
I've driven in hills extensively living in WV. The really steep mountains are an issue, but the rolling hills I almost always get better mileage as I can essentially "Pulse and Glide" using gravity instead of my speed. Some of the better coasts through western Maryland (Cumberland Area) and PA can last several miles.
OMG. I LOVE coasting down those mountain sides on I-70 and I-60. With a CAI, my all time high MPG on my Mustang is a 24.0 from Fairmont, WV to a gas station somewhere on I-70. 100% hw miles. With the ultraguage, I coasted about a mile at a 6% grade around 80 MPH+ (my dash beeps at me when I exceed 75) and the UG read 200-250 MPG in neutral.


I hope to be able to do that drive again now that I've dumped the CAI. I should be able to get 27-28 MPG on that route now as I got 23-24 MPG this winter

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