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Old 01-18-2015, 01:22 PM   #1
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East coast road trip?

We are planing on an east coast roadtrip from Tampa to Maine in a 40' rig flat towing a Ford F-150. I am looking for info on routes, sites and site seeing stops. We are looking to spend about 3 weeks or less. All info is welcome.
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Old 01-18-2015, 02:19 PM   #2
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Although I can't tell you much about what route to take, here's something to look out for if you get as far north as Bar Harbor. Friends who were there this fall were informed that they will doing major reconstruction of the main road through Bar Harbor starting in the spring. That will result in one way traffic and some substantial delays.
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Old 01-18-2015, 05:23 PM   #3
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I am curious as to how many miles you plan to drive per day. It looks like using fastest route, based on the speed limits, the round trip will run about 45 hours total. And that is figured to Portland, ME. Most advice you will get will suggest routes that are somewhat longer to avoid some nasty traffic. So, if you give us your travel expectations, it will be easier to recommend stops, routes and things to see.
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Old 01-18-2015, 05:56 PM   #4
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We defiantly want to go to Washington and Niagra Falls.and Boston. I don't plan to drive everyday. I figure we might make 5-6 stops and make day trips in the truck. I defiantly want to avoid traffic and take more scenic drive as long as it is Big rig friendly.
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Old 01-18-2015, 06:42 PM   #5
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Go around Richmond via 295, there is no significant additional time or miles and it is a MUCH easier drive. If you ride bikes take the into DC, much easier to cover more territory on the mall. Bikes are welcome on the metro and buses. At Baltimore take the Francis Scott Key Bridge, there is a toll but it is much faster then going west through Towson. Some will tell you you can go through the Baltimore Tunnel, I have been forced to back track by tunnel staff, apparently it depends who is working. It is much easier to take the Key Bridge then be forced of the highway and wiggle your way through some not so great neighborhoods trying to get back on track. Further north take the NJ Turnpike (95) north to exit 10, pick up Rt 287, and loop around the NYC congestion, bridges and tunnels. Take 287to either the Tappan Zee Bridge or many people travel up the NY Thruway to tRT 84'and start wiggling east from there. Either way you are within 20 mile of West Point, a great stop for a few hours. I usually take 95 through Westchester and along the coast in CT. Can be a very unfun drive, try to hit either early or late and be patient and hammer through. It is 4.5 to 5 hours from the Tappan Zee to Boston. A nice boondocking stop on the way to Boston is Mohegan Sun Casino. After driving through New Jersey, NY and most of CT you and your co-pilot will be ready for a cocktail... If you are so inclined. Very secure, free, good entertainment, food and even if you are not a gambler plenty of free entertainment people watching. Form there it is a short 2 hour hop to Boston, another town that is best covered on Bikes. Acadia and Bar Harbor are a long way up in Maine but I think well worth the trip. If you have the time drive along the coast in Maine for a while. Can be tight but very pretty with some great small towns. No matter when you go, bring warm clothes and leave your swim wear in the RV. Only Canadians swim in Maine.
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Old 01-18-2015, 06:49 PM   #6
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Oops, I thought you mentioned Bar Harbor... Boston to Niagra... The finger lakes are beautiful but virtually no waterfront RV sites. Bring your passports, leave your weapons at home and definitely stay on the Canadian side. The view is better as are the RV Park options, dining, entertainment and everything else. The NY side is quite depressed with very few camping options.
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Old 01-18-2015, 06:52 PM   #7
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Don't forget the Blue Ridge Parkway. The views are soul changing in my opinion with some nice campgrounds both public and private. Might be out of your way a bit, but worth a look. Again MH size and height need to be taken into consideration.
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Old 01-18-2015, 07:05 PM   #8
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We went from northeast of Atlanta up to Acadia last summer. We stopped in Cincinnati, Niagra, Boston, Acadia, Cape Cod, Mystic Seaport, and back home. We were gone a little over two weeks. A few longer days driving, especially on the way back, but nothing too bad. I took a round-about way back through Pennsylvania to avoid NYC, Baltimore, and DC, but I wouldn't do it again. Took me way longer than going to the cities and around on the beltways. I've driven the MH through Baltimore and DC before, and it wasn't that bad. Just be sure to avoid traffic times-try to go through on the weekends.
I drive a 40-footer and pull a Dodge Ram. Let me know if you want more info.
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Old 01-18-2015, 07:16 PM   #9
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Campground

A vary popular campground for doing DC is Cherry Hill CG in Md. We have stayed there 2 or 3 times. They really cater to DC folks. Almost every day they have a information talk on how to do DC. A Bus come right to the park. And I think it takes you to the METRO. And if you just want to sit it's a nice place to do just that.
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Old 01-18-2015, 09:53 PM   #10
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What DebnDan said until he went on 95 through CT. Unless you want to see Cape Cod, I would use the north to 84 route - 84 to 691, to 91 and back to 84, to 90, to 495. If you want to visit Boston, Minuteman in Littleton, MA Easy off and on 495 and the folks in the office are great for advice on visiting the city.https://minutemancampground.com/
495 will take you to 95 north into coastal NH and ME. There are some decent places in the Wells, ME area to use if you want to check out southern coastal, ME. Acadia is beautiful if you think you will have time to get that far. That will probably be determined by how much time you have spent getting to ME.
Have lived in New England all my life - if you have any specific things you want info about, we probably have been there in our travels.
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Old 01-20-2015, 01:50 AM   #11
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Forgive me for saying so, Coolhand, but a 3-week trip from Tampa to Maine and BACK just doesn't sound like a lot of ...well, FUN, to me. That is, if you're rushing to get there, rushing to see what you want to see and rushing to get back home it all just seems a bit... rushed.

One of mine & Sally's future trips is from Tuscaloosa to Prince Edward Island. Granted, we don't punch timeclocks or have children in school and such. We take the critters along with us so we're free to take as much time as necessary to go, do and see. But even our tentative minimum travel time to PEI is ten days and, most likely, longer than that [Sally wants to visit Hershey, PA and I want to see the Flight 93 Memorial]. We'd be on the island for at least a month. The return trip is, on paper, a little less time as the trip up, but it does have built-in some two-day stays along the way just to take a break from the road. That's a ballpark figure of about 3+ weeks right there, JUST in travel time and not including time spent at our destination.

All I'm saying here is that it seems you might be trying to cram a lot of stuff-to-do into a bag that's not-really-enough-time-to-enjoy-it-all. Do I surmise that you are newbie RV owners? Excellent! We were all newbies once! It's exciting to have that nice rig out in the drive, all fueled up and ready to go on the Next Big Adventure. But with that excitement comes the impulse of "WegottausethisbigexpensiveRVsowe'llgetourmoneyout ofit!" You will use it... I'd just say don't bite off more than you can chew right now... or this summer.

Sometimes, that Big Adventure can be a campground 20 miles away. Perhaps you might even consider enjoying some of Florida before you venture out farther... There are wonderful campgrounds in St. Augustine, Cedar Key, The Big Bend and the Panhandle. And if you have to go out of state, even New Orleans isn't a bad drive from Tampa in a 40-footer!

If I'm out of bounds here, I whole-heartedly apologize. There may even be a few CG owners along I-95 reading this that're cussin' me a blue streak right now, too. I say all this simply because I just don't want to see a new RVer get caught up in a whirlwind that takes all the fun out of it for you before you've had a chance to HAVE any!

But that's just me.
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Old 01-20-2015, 07:21 AM   #12
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I have to agree with GraciesDaddy. Rough mileage is 900mi. Tampa to D.C., then 400mi. to Niagra, another 470 to Boston, and 100mi. to Portland, Me.. That's 1900mi. one way, 3800mi. round trip. Doesn't leave a lot of time to really see things, nor taking into consideration traffic delays, like construction, and if going by a scenic route, that'll slow you down by going through little towns with stop lights. With a full 3wks. it can be done, but it won't give you much time to stop & smell the roses.
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Old 01-20-2015, 08:06 AM   #13
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See our blog of the coasts of Georgia, South Carolina, and the southern coast of North Carolina. April and May of 2013. Many interesting sights and beautiful sun sets on the coast: Savannah, Charleston, Myrtle Beach, Wilmington, the two Beaufort's (South Carolina and North Carolina).

RVGR8escape: SAVANNAH APRIL 1 - APRIL 8, 2013 HISTORIC SAVANNAH

Safe travels and THE JOY IS IN THE RIDE
Below is a sunset at Hunting Beach, Beaufort, South Carolina. Very nice state campground
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Old 01-20-2015, 10:24 AM   #14
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I have to agree with GraciesDaddy. Rough mileage is 900mi. Tampa to D.C., then 400mi. to Niagra, another 470 to Boston, and 100mi. to Portland, Me.. That's 1900mi. one way, 3800mi. round trip. Doesn't leave a lot of time to really see things, nor taking into consideration traffic delays, like construction, and if going by a scenic route, that'll slow you down by going through little towns with stop lights. With a full 3wks. it can be done, but it won't give you much time to stop & smell the roses.

Agreed, if time constraints are not applicable. I work full-time, and we have 3 younger kids, so we did it in a little over two weeks. 3300 miles. I was tired some days, but it was completely worth it.
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