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Old 11-03-2012, 07:53 AM   #15
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In short season areas (where winter is early and cold), we always book campground space as soon as we know where we are traveling, especially if our stay includes a weekend or holiday. Locals will fill a good campground in a hurry during the summer. For in route stays we typically will reserve a night or two in advance of our arrival. We are what I call destination travelers. We typically stay in one spot and explore the area with the towd, then move to the next area.
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Old 11-03-2012, 09:23 AM   #16
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For camping in Oregon, ESP west of the Cascades, we always book in advance as the best spots get taken early. On our recent Yellowstone trip, we booked all our sites on the way out and in West Yellowstone in advance. On the return via a different route, we booked none in order to be spontaneous. Both worked, but I wish I had booked one more day in Grand Teton which had no "spontaneous" options at the time. That said, we found some great places along the return trip that we would not have enjoyed had we not been spontaneous.

In the end, popular places are well worth it to pre book. This mix of both worked well.
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Old 11-03-2012, 09:44 AM   #17
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We winter in the Florida Keys. Especially if you want to stay in a state CG you better book ahead or start heading toward the mainland. No Walmarts here and no overnight parking in Monroe county.

Some of the private CGs might have an opening but in February that is not a sure bet. We long term in a private CG that usually has something for you but in mid winter we have seen them booked.
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Old 11-03-2012, 10:16 AM   #18
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We winter in the Florida Keys. Especially if you want to stay in a state CG you better book ahead or start heading toward the mainland. No Walmarts here and no overnight parking in Monroe county.

Some of the private CGs might have an opening but in February that is not a sure bet. We long term in a private CG that usually has something for you but in mid winter we have seen them booked.
A little off topic, but we want to go south. We normally do the Orlando area, but are thinking the Keys this year. Where do you go and when should I make reservations?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 11-03-2012, 10:52 AM   #19
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Last time I booked was 8 years ago, and have only been turned away once since then. But...I travel so that I'm settled in a park over weekends and not battling with those weekend warriors for space. And I choose my travel spurts so that I'm near small towns with 2 or 3 RV parks when I want to rest. Then on holiday weeks, I pre-plan so I'm settled in early and paying by the week to cover the holiday.

And I have found that RV parks bend over backwards to find you a space on crowded/holiday weekends if you come in the Wednesday or Thursday before. And if the first space isn't appropriate for my rig, as soon as something opens, usually by a cancellation, they'll let me know so I can move.
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Old 11-03-2012, 11:26 AM   #20
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A little off topic, but we want to go south. We normally do the Orlando area, but are thinking the Keys this year. Where do you go and when should I make reservations?

Thanks in advance.
We stay 3 months at Knights Key CG. H2O & electric but no sewer. They do have a honey wagon to dump your tanks. The ocean sites sometime fill up but the inland ones usually have openings except Feb last year.

Feel free to PM me with ?? about the keys.

Right now we are at Curry Hammock SP. We booked it 11 months ago. There are some hit or miss sites due to cancellations but they get scooped up very fast. Bahia Honda is worse. I have heard it is booked 365 for the waterfront sites.

For Key West the best bet is Boyds CG but the rates ate over $100 a night in season.
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Old 11-03-2012, 11:32 AM   #21
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I usually book from 60 to 120 days in advance. I have three different, Full Memberships.
Mountain Lakes, VIP Thousand Trails, and CRA. I do have to book well in advance for the holidays. I pay nothing for each stay other than my annual membership dues.
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Old 11-03-2012, 11:45 AM   #22
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I always look up resorts and campgrounds and then take it one step futher and look at it on "google earth" and compare thier layout map to what I see on google earth and then pick a site from there. On google earth you can see how big the lots are and what the tree and shade areas are like and if there are open area's with no trees. I have found that this method makes for no suprises when you get there. And yes, I just about plan my whole summer starting in january or feburary and make resverations at this time as I have to be signed up where I work, so I plan my vacation time at this time and wait for the summer to unfold
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Old 11-03-2012, 01:09 PM   #23
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Rarely stay in RV parks, couldn't possibly book in advance. Never know where I'm going, what might be interesting, how far I want to drive. I would truly resent having to drive farther than I wanted or stopping before I was ready just to get to an RV park.

Since nature calls at about the same time the gas tanks do, there's a need for a gas station and a gray water dump and that's about it for weeks at a time.

“Free at last, Free at last, Thank God almighty we are free at last.” Martin Luther King.
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Old 11-03-2012, 01:22 PM   #24
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We traveled out west for a couple of months in 07,08, and 09. We made no reservations ahead of time and never were turned away. It was a little off season. (Sept. and Oct.) A couple of times we called ahead in the mourning to make sure they had an opening, because the campground was in the middle of nowhere and there was no other campgrounds close by.
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Old 11-03-2012, 08:17 PM   #25
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DW and I plan on staying in Fla this coming winter ( mid Jan to mid Mar ). Possibly at Lake Panasoffkee KOA - west of Orlando. Does anybody have any info about this CG ?
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Old 11-03-2012, 08:42 PM   #26
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We are very particular about where we stay. Last month we stayed at Grand Canyon NP and wanted to be at the Trailer Village CG that is within the national park. We made the reservations about 6 weeks in advance; the CG was booked solid every night. If we hadn't made advance reservations we wouldn't have been able to stay there. Would there have been other CGs in the area, of course, but none of them would have been on the park's shuttle route so we didn't have to use the toad the entire time we were there.

Pretty much the same thing can be said of most national park and other major tourist destinations. Do you want to stay at the CG underneath the roller coasters at Cedar Point in OH (one of the best roller coaster parks in the world)? If so you'd better make those reservations months in advance. Sure there are other parks in the area, but only one like this one.

Obviously, there are also plenty of places where the exact choice of a CG is less important, particularly when we are on the road from one destination to another. In those cases we often call in mid-morning when we have a better idea how far we will drive.
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Old 11-03-2012, 08:49 PM   #27
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We did a two month trip through Canada and US this past summer and for the most part we had all RV campgrounds booked in advance. We travel alone just the two of us and we only stay at campgrounds that have high ratings and good reviews. Problem is we sometimes decide to change our pace and or schedule and we wound up losing our campground fee on several occasions. We are wondering...Do most of you guys book in advance or just book the night before or same day. If so do you find you ever have trouble getting into a good campground on short notice or will you generally not have a problem? Last year was our first year touring around and we are learning as we go.
We usually only book the same day when we know where we will be that afternoon. Most of our travels in the west is after Labor Day when travel pressure is less, If you travel the prime vaction months you probably would have to book days ahead and that be comes a problem when you get interested in an area and need more time. Same applies if you travel south in winter to popular areas.
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