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Old 07-15-2012, 10:58 PM   #1
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We recently returned from our first long trip, almost 2,000 miles. I thought I would share some highlights.

What went well
Ten days in a tin can with my wife and we got along great. Considering the uncertainties of a first long motorhome trip a plus
Planned ahead and had great campground experiences
Gained a lot of confidence, weather and wind permitting drove 65 - 69
The owner of the campground we stayed at in Moab suggested going to Park City rather than Salt Lake to avoid construction. Great recommendation
Pulled the new used 2010'Jeep and couldn't be happier, bonus it seemed to stabilize things in big wind driving through Mountain Home, ID
Learned to trust the transmission to shift down on its own. Have a three level jake brake and kept it on the high setting. Rarely used brakes, even on 7% grades. Just stabbed them to get to desired speed and let engine do the work
Didn't feel bad about going 47 - 50 on the steep grades
Spent three days in front of folks house, with generator running around the clock. Put a couple hundred hours on it.

What went poorly
Jeep got chips, need to outfit it withe better protection
Didn't fully check out the brake indicator light wiring, turns out couldn't take off doors because of a wad of tape
Alternator failure/buzzer went off twice, always right after starting down the road. Turning off generator for a few minutes resulted in light going off
Descending Spanish Fork canyon and the low air light went off, even though both gauges indicated 115 lbs of pressure. Scared the Ou know what out of me
Have to figure better way to stow folding recliner chairs, used backseat of Jeep
Saw plenty of crazies including an F-250 towing a huge 5th wheeler AND a pontoon boat in the mountains near Park City
Stopped at an Indian Truck stop on Utah New Mexico border. No joke, only one pump working at 1gallon per minute, ended up fueling up in Bloomfield
Averaged 8.9 MPG towing and going over pretty big mountains
Air Force One system worked flawlessly. Actually locked theJeep up once. Not the motorhome fortunately

Lessons Learned
Plan fuel stops (with backup) in advance. Never had a problem, but it sure slows things o go to thee wrong sop
Listen, with caution, to locals advice. The owner in Moab provided a great recommendation for dinner and hiking. I trusted him on the reroute suggestion
Talked to all my folks neighbors and was still worried about noise. Not a problem
Took extensive notes as I found warranty work, wouldn't have found many of the issues if we hadn't been in coach ten days
Reserving campsites in advanced must for us. Saw folks turned away at one place
See crazies and move out of the way
will never go on a trip without the Jeep

Much of the success of the trip was the result of information from this site. Thanks!

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Old 07-16-2012, 02:13 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Kevin123 View Post
We recently returned from our first long trip, almost 2,000 miles. I thought I would share some highlights.
Much of the success of the trip was the result of information from this site. Thanks!
GREAT post! Very helpful to those of us with that maiden voyage still ahead.


Kathryn . . . still lurking and learning!

"Wise men still seek Him..."
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Old 07-16-2012, 09:15 AM   #3
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Sounds like a great trip.
2017 Grand Design Reflection 303 RLS
1997 GMC Sierra 3500 Dually
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Old 07-16-2012, 09:34 AM   #4
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Sounds like you all have a good trip. It seems that no matter how long we have been using MH's, we always seem to learn something new on each trip. When we are making long trip, I plan my fuel stops and track what we pay for fuel. Since we have to come back the same route, I have a better idea of where the less expensive fuel is.
Have fun and enjoy!
2009 38' Diplomat
CSM- retired, wife as co-pilot
Reka & Ali providing security (our 2 labs)
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Old 07-16-2012, 11:20 AM   #5
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Glad you had a great time. Watch out, it becomes addictive. Join PassPort America.
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Old 07-16-2012, 12:51 PM   #6
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"After Action Report", spoken like a true "Dyed in the Wool" military individual.

Glad to hear you enjoyed your trip. Trip planning pays-off in busy travel seasons.

Fred and Bonnie
2005 Dolphin LX 6375
Abby, Ruffles & Scarlett, "The Cats"
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Old 07-18-2012, 10:24 AM   #7
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You didn't say how long each day you travel.

I've never been turned away from a full campground so I never make reservations (did the first year of full timing though). But I start looking for a park between 3:30-4:30. I don't care to give my CC # for reservations only to drive into the park and find their WiFi doesn't work or the grounds are a mess or whatever, only to be told they don't refund the reservation fee. Have found many campgrounds that say, "Sure, we can take big rigs" when I call first, then find they haven't cut back the trees in years. I like being able to just drive to another campground after inspecting first.

For me, getting to a campground before 5pm when the night rush begins seems to be the trick to never being turned away.
'02 Winnebago Journey DL, DSDP, 36' of fun.

Visit my RV Travel & Repair Blog at : http://chaos.goblinbox.com
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Old 07-18-2012, 12:20 PM   #8
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For future documentation of the crazies out there I'm installing a dash cam 32g system. Under $100 insurance program for what happens in front of you.
Got any problem, just show it to the cop.
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Old 07-18-2012, 01:25 PM   #9
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'Monstaliner' your Jeep's front grill and fenders. You will get chips no more. Lots of Wrangler guys do it.

'99 Bounder 30E with V10 and '06 Wrangler tow (no more dolly )
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Old 07-18-2012, 08:58 PM   #10
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Well done sir. Well written report.

2003 Newmar Kountry Star 3905, Freightliner XC chassis with CAT 330. Winnie the black lab, pretty Airbus captain wife, retired airline pilot with 11 grandkids. UH-1 pilot (Huey) U.S. Army 1967-1983. RVN 68-69. Northern Idaho my summer home.
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