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Old 01-17-2013, 03:49 PM   #1
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35' v. 40'

Looking for input on length of a coach and the impact on places to stay. As I understand it with every foot in length, you limit some % of places you can stay.

If you were looking to do a tour that includes Alaska, the western US, southern US (across over to FL) over the course of 12 months, moving 1-2 times per week...and didn't want to make reservations more than a week an advance most times, would impact (in %?) would you expect to have by having a 35' rig v. a 40' rig?

Would you say you might be limited to 50% of grounds with a 35' and 65% with a 40'? I was told with state parks, there is a fairly big impact if you are over 35'?


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Old 01-17-2013, 03:58 PM   #2
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Wow what a question. An answer would depend on ones likes and dislikes in a CG. We've had a 40' coach for about 8 years and put about 65,000 miles on it during that time. We have gone out west abut 5 times traveling to AZ, UT, NV, CO and in between there and FL. I can honestly say that I can't remember a CG that I wanted to go to that could not accommodate our size. There have been some that were close but it just hasn't been an issue for us. Good luck on your trip.

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Old 01-17-2013, 04:01 PM   #3
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Plan out your trip now, make the necessary phone calls to the local CGs and ask if they can fit a 40. The ask about the availability of those spots.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:11 PM   #4
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I sense you are planning to stay at a lot of state parks. If that is the case you might find some degradation in the number of campgrounds you can 'comfortably' get into. However, I have read on this forum that many 40 footers frequent state parks with few problems.

Outside that, I doubt you will find more than a small percent of other campgrounds that cannot handle a 40 footer.

We have a 42 foot and have traveled across country making reservations the day we decided where we wanted to stop and have never had a problem finding a campground with a space for us.

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Old 01-17-2013, 04:18 PM   #5
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The smaller anything is the easier it is to drive and get around with. If I was going to go on a 1 year long trip I would go and look at them, go through them, and then find what model and floor plan you need that works for you and then the length will be determined then. Most campgrounds/resorts today that can accept a 35' can also take on a 40'er or longer. Pull th roughs are just about everywhere I go anymore and if they don't have them they are planning to build some to please and accommodate todays big rigs.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:49 PM   #6
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You may also find that if you go smaller, you could end up wishing you had more space in the near future. As most have posted, you should not have any problems with a 40 footer vs 35. My first coach was 36 and now we have 42. Didn't really need the 42 but paid the same for 42 as another 40 that we were looking at. Now that is a much bigger decision between 40 and 42, mostly because the ride is much different and there are 2 more tires to be taken into consideration. I say go for the 40 and enjoy the extra space. Good luck!
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:17 PM   #7
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In our experience, size makes a BIG difference to overall comfort. What looks "comfy" or "cozy" before you buy can end up feeling small once you move in.

So from an overall happiness point of view, I'd highly recommend going longer... and since the folks with the 40 footers here seem not to have been limited in their cg choices, I'd say "go for it!!!"
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Old 01-18-2013, 07:06 AM   #8
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We have a 36' class A and have only had a few problems in 3 yrs of full timing. We do have to limit the amount of stuff we carry. But the fact of the matter is we carry more stuff than we use. If I had my way about 1/2 the stuff in the basement would go and a 1/3 of the stuff in closet would be gone. That being said when traveling in a confined space for a long period of time with your DW you just learn how to smile. If you use public campgrounds and they have "reserve america" type reservation systems it tells you the length of the sites and what hook ups are there. Some even have pictures of each site. We have stayed in pretty nice places and often we seem to be one of the larger motor homes in the CG. I guess it depends on what you like. Speaking of which you might want to check out rv.org and buy their product. It will be the best money you spend on your future rv. Also when you are looking check out oodle.com it will search all over the web for what you're looking for and if you check the right boxes it will send you daily updates on what's available.
Good Luck and happy hunting
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Old 01-18-2013, 07:14 AM   #9
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I had a 36 for about 7 years and now a 40. I find virtually no difference in driving (length-wise) and have never encountered a campground problem. You're only talking about 4-5 feet difference.
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Old 01-18-2013, 07:14 AM   #10
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I guess it depends on how far off the beaten path you want to go. Also, I think it depends on how good you are handling your rig.

There is one campground I love to go to in NC. It is really, really tight and alot of trees too. I usually take my little 19' travel trailer up there and between the tight confines, and all the car, trucks and what-not parked there, I have a heck of a time negotiating the place. But guess what? There are plenty of 40+ MH and 5th wheels in there. How do they do it?

When I go down to Myrtle Beach, they certainly take the mega coaches and 5th wheel toy haulers in those parks. I had a heck of a time getting my rig in those tiny spaces. Dodging trees, signs, parked cars, etc. I saw one toy hauler knock down a street sign while I was there.

So my point is, there is more to consider than just if the place has spaces for a 45' coach. Getting in and out and negotiating a space will depend on how good a driver you are.
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Old 01-18-2013, 07:34 AM   #11
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You will be all right with the 40 ft. MH. I have been to one state park that probably would have been and one rv resort that was just to tight but we made it work. Bottom line if you think for just one second you may have a problem, stop! Get out and look!
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Old 01-18-2013, 07:53 AM   #12
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If you are going to be in state parks, many states now have great reservations online including each site and the maximum length which can vary greatly from site to site. You listed Florida as one of the states you plan to visit. Go here (as an example), hover over the campsite number (make sure it is not a cabin) and you should see a maximum length. Note that some sites are max 35 and others are max 40 in this particular campground. Many states have web sites that provide similar info. Find Campsites - Blue Spring SP, FL - Florida Department of Environmental Protection
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Old 01-18-2013, 08:28 AM   #13
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I have a 40 foot RV, towing a Jeep 4 down. We travel all of Canada and the USA. Never had any problems to find a parking spot, never booked in advance. The height of the rig can be more problem then length.
You will get used to it, Smile and go.
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Old 01-18-2013, 08:36 AM   #14
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I would say a more important consideration is your driving experience with RV's (or long/large vehicles). I was in the computer business most of my life, never drove anything big. First RV was a 25ft class C then went class A, 25, 27 ,40 and now 42 (over the last 20 yrs). Knowing what I know now, if I started with a 42, that would have been tough.

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