2013 Hyundai Santa Fe: Joshua Tree Camping Trip Part 2
May 1, 2014
Inside Joshua Tree National Park, the long-term 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe spent considerable time being used for food storage and shade. On day two we were joined by two friends in a second car but to make things easier throughout the trip, I folded up two of the Santa Fe's seats and welcomed them to ride in back. Exploring and carrying five people in the Santa Fe was easy, even with the sixth seat folded down to make room for lunch.
I was a bit worried about the Santa Fe's uncomfortable ride with passengers before we arrived, but inside the park, those concerns were unnecessary. We drove to and from a few cool rock formations and even bounced around on a few dirt roads which were easy work for the Santa Fe. The roads inside Joshua Tree are nearly perfect and the passengers had no complaints. If we had to drive several hundred miles on corrugated metal, things would be different, but inside in the park, we were all happy and comfortable.
For a weekend trip to the desert, the Santa Fe was pretty ideal. The air-conditioning worked overtime when we returned from hikes during the hot sunny days and the heated seats kept us toasty during the cold desert nights. At one point, we ran out of s'mores at the campfire, and decided that the Santa Fe looked pretty cool under the starry desert sky. Normally, I wouldn't spend time away from the campfire to set up my tripod and play lighting games with a family-carrying SUV, but I like the look of the Santa Fe. Looks might not be a concern for some car shoppers, but the Santa Fe's aesthetics are an added benefit for those who do care.
Travis Langness, Associate Editor @ 19,100 miles