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Old 02-19-2014, 07:39 PM   #15
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I see your in Texas, lots of nice state parks. The state parks has a web site that you can use to see what hook ups are available at various parks and make reservations. If you decide to go to some of the state parks be sure to buy annual "park pass". I think they are around $70, it will pay for it self.

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Old 02-19-2014, 07:41 PM   #16
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Hi Katyscarlett,

If you happen to be 62 years old or older, you should consider a National Park Senior Pass (https://store.usgs.gov/pass/senior.html) . You pay $10 one time only and get free admittance to all National Parks and half-priced camping spots for the rest of your life. Not only is this good at National Parks but also at Corps of Engineers Campgrounds, BLM (Bureau of Land Management) Campgrounds, and other federal CG's.

I also fully agree with everyone that mentioned RVParkReviews.com, we ALWAYS use their site to get info about campgrounds along our route. We also find it handy to have a paperback copy of a Campground Guide with us, such as the Good Sam RV Travel Guide and Campground Directory (see Amazon.com or go to a Camping World store to get a copy).

May I suggest that you use the website RV Park Reviews.com and find a campground close to home. Then drive over there in your automobile and talk to them and ask for a tour of their campground. Ask about the things that matter to you such as: free wi-fi, cable tv, 30 or 50 amp electrical connections for your RV, is the sewer connection at the indivitual site or do you have to move the rig to a dump station located at the campground, are there trees that might block your dish antenna for satellite tv reception (or will you even have one on your rig?), are there trees that you'll be happy to have to keep the sun off in summer, is there a swimming pool, are you close to a river or lake, is the campground in a nice neighborhood (so you feel safe), are you close to shopping or restaurants, whatever is important to you. Also, ask which discounts they allow. By that I mean that AAA auto club members and Good Sam members usualy get discounts at many RV parks.

One thing you'll also see listed in reviews is some complaints about people that live in the rv park full time as opposed to people traveling and staying for a few nights while on the way to a destination. Some of the short term campers feel that some permanent residents at some parks cause a "blight" of appearance (since they are 'living' there, they may have more 'stuff' scattered around their site).

Finally, there are membership campgrounds and some RV'ers belong to them. May I suggest that you keep that in the back of your mind as you decide what type of camper you are and not rush into buying any memberships into campground organizations such as Coast-to-Coast or RPI. You'll learn about the goods and bads of these memberships as you go along so there's no rush to join up in the beginning.

For the very low amount of money though, I do suggest joining Good Sam, if for no reason other than the camping discounts. But, if you are already a AAA member, you can hold off on this too.

When I said 'what type of camper' are you? I meant are you traveling from Point A to Point D with intermediate points you must stop at since "D" is too far to get to in 1 days drive? Or do you prefer to drive to a "destination park" and stay put for weeks or months?

Go out, go camping, have fun, talk to other campers, while at one campground, go visit others in the area in your tow car just to see what they are like, etc. Have lots of fun!



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Old 02-26-2014, 09:51 PM   #17
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Don't forget there are some campground reviews here too!!
As an added bonus, you could PM the poster to get more info if necessary.
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Old 02-27-2014, 06:29 PM   #18
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Thank you, one and all. Most of you mentioned things I wouldn't have thought of. I copy and paste a lot of the comments and information and put it in folders on my computer for future reference. Much food for thought and "homework".
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Old 02-27-2014, 08:16 PM   #19
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I have been using Woodall's Campround Guide for years and it's been pretty accurate. Also if you know you're going to a particular place, ask in here. Someone may have been there and will give you their opinion.
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Old 02-27-2014, 09:24 PM   #20
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I think your search for a campsite should start when you have your rig. You will need to know what facilities you need so you can better select a campsite. Folks with class A MH may want different facilties than will someone with a tent or pop up ie water, 30 or 50 amp electric, bath house, sewer hook ups or dump station. The quality of services at State and County operated campgrounds differ from state to state. Most are located in beautiful natural areas but many don't have much in the way of facilties. Some don't like the campgrounds that are laid out like a parking lot but some do because they tend to be located near popular local attractions. So you have to figure out what type of camper are you going to be. Do you want to be communing with nature for 2-7 days or do you want to explore an area and just use the facility at the end of the day. I've stayed in many campgrounds that were OK for an overnight stay but I would never want to spend more than 1 night in them. Once you have your needs understood then you can use the internet to research the camp grounds in an area you want to stay in. Each place will have a map of their facilities so you can request to be near a pond if they have one or close to a comfort station if you have a tent or pop up. Have fun but don't expect to have a perfect experience every time you camp. I have found that there are two types of campgrounds; those who are in the temporary housing business and those who are in the hospitality business. You will have more fun at the one in the hospitality business.
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Old 02-28-2014, 12:16 PM   #21
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I believe you are right, D in Davie. I don't expect every experience to be perfect. I much prefer the "hospitality" locations, but I am aware that there may be times when I just need an overnight stay for whatever reason. I'm sure it will all amount to trial and error and experience, which you all have. Thanks for your input.
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Old 02-28-2014, 12:31 PM   #22
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You mentioned being on a budget. Depending on that budget you are going to find private campgrounds will be more expensive than State or Federal campgrounds. The private campgrounds will most times but not always have sites very close to each other where State and Federal parks are "usually" more roomy.

We spend a lot of time in our coach year around and never use private campgrounds. Not our style. State parks for us.
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Old 02-28-2014, 12:41 PM   #23
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One of the things that will be important is what type/size of camper you have and what it's requirements are. Also, what your requirements will be, will you be solo, have children, pets, what will their needs be? DH and I went to a local (within a half hour drive) campground that is a state park... we had been told it had a pool by friends who had camped there previously, since it was a hot Kansas Summer, I thought it would be nice to swim... got there, and found the pool had been filled in because that was cheaper than fixing the leak apparently. We still enjoyed our long weekend, but I wish I had looked at it on google earth first. Probably wouldn't have changed where I ended up, but the pool had been a deciding factor between 2-3 other sites I had been considering. There was no swimming in the lake as it was a wildlife area, and a cooling lake for a coal power plant so there was alot of coal dust in the water...which was why they had previously provided a pool there....
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Old 03-03-2014, 11:54 AM   #24
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I think one of the best pieces of information I have gotten is the Google Earth idea. However, I don't know how recent the pictures are. Just for grins, I pulled our home location to see what it looked like on GE and the same picture was there for over a year. In any case, I agree with all of you. Great information. . .
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Old 03-03-2014, 12:03 PM   #25
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Google earth is the greatest tool......

Originally Posted by katyscarlett View Post
I think one of the best pieces of information I have gotten is the Google Earth idea. However, I don't know how recent the pictures are. Just for grins, I pulled our home location to see what it looked like on GE and the same picture was there for over a year. In any case, I agree with all of you. Great information. . .
I use Goggle Earth every time I go to a new resort/campground to checkout the layout and compare goggle earth to the campground/resort maps. After my visit to The Turning Stone resort, In Verona,NY, I went back to look at goggle earth a year later and guess what......A photo was taken in the time frame I was there from space.......Once in a life time shot I would guess
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Old 03-03-2014, 02:02 PM   #26
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Old 03-03-2014, 03:17 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by palehorse89 View Post
I use Goggle Earth every time I go to a new resort/campground to checkout the layout and compare goggle earth to the campground/resort maps.
I also use Google Earth to check out campgrounds. I use it to help me decide on which site I may want in the campground.
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Old 03-03-2014, 03:35 PM   #28
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The very first answer hit it right on the head......I never (with an occasional exception) stay at a campground without checking RV Park Reviews. I actually read the reviews and check as many photos as possible......I've been deceived by a few websites......but not many. It just improves my odds of finding a nice place to stay versus just stopping after being on the road for 8-10 hours.


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