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Old 12-27-2010, 06:53 AM   #1
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Question First timer

I am thinking about taking my first RV trip, probably coming up in the spring or summer of 2011, so I thought I might need to ask the experts here for advice first. First off, there will be 3 people travelling, and we will be renting. We're still debating where to go, but we're throwing around either to DC, the Dakotas, or California's nat'l parks. Either way, I figure on being gone roughly 2 weeks to a month. I've heard several resources on free campsites, including walmarts Other than that, how much money can we save on the road?(usually, we either drive wherever we go, or fly and rent a car)
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Old 12-27-2010, 08:09 AM   #2
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dc would be tough to get around in a RV
going west should be an easy drive
campgrounds dont seem to be a buckbuster for me
5 weeks out last year was our longest stretch avg about 30 a day when you add in the free sites
fuel is a differant issue the low fuel light never came on but always 135-190 to fill up
i dont know if you will save but doing you own schedule and no tsa patdowns
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Old 12-27-2010, 08:56 AM   #3
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DC or the Dakotas? That's a huge difference. I would not plan on driving and parking an RV in DC. I have seen it done, but not very much. Many people stay at Cherry Hill and ride their shuttle in to the city. Once there, the Metro is fine.
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Old 12-27-2010, 09:50 AM   #4
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hippyman:

Hi from Casa Grande, AZ.

Since this will be your first trip out, ya might consider headin North on 83 just West of Vernon then on up to I-90 at Murdo, South Dakota and then West on I-90 over to Rapid City and into the Black Hills.

Given the 2 to 4 week time frame you mentioned, this would likely be the most relaxing, and enjoyable adventure. The Hills (Black Hills) offer one of the greatest vacation spots and making a loop up to the Hills and back to Vernon perhaps coming South through Cheyenne, WY, down through Denver and winding back SE to Vernon would be a fun trip.

There's so much to see up in the Hills area. We'd recommend planning to find a base campground, parking your rig, and touring from there. If the rig you rent won't allow for towing a car along, then rent a car once in the Hills and poke around with that.

If this sounds interesting, we can offer some suggestions as to where to stay, what to see, etc. Drop a inquiry if you'd like.

Steve & Lynette
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Old 12-27-2010, 09:52 AM   #5
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State parks are usually a bargain and not the lineup of most overnight RV parks. You'll probably need to drive if you stay in a state park so look into towing a car or renting when you arrive.

Wal-Mart isn't a camp ground. It's OK for staying overnight when you need to. But best if you don't set up while there. That is no awnings and most people don't even put any slides out while taking advantage of Wal-Martís hospitality. Be sure to go inside and ask the store manager for permission to stay over night. Some local laws forbid them from allowing stay overs.

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Old 12-27-2010, 10:46 AM   #6
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If you plan on taking your own food or buying it at the grocery and preparing in the RV you will save considerably on hotel and meals. That said, the adventure of stopping at a senic overlook and having lunch is as someone said, priceless. It's definitely an opportunity for three people to spend quality time together if you like each other. And you better like each other.

I would not recommend taking the RV to DC either. Go west young man, go west.

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Old 12-27-2010, 10:52 AM   #7
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hippyman:

Hi from Casa Grande, AZ.

Since this will be your first trip out, ya might consider headin North on 83 just West of Vernon then on up to I-90 at Murdo, South Dakota and then West on I-90 over to Rapid City and into the Black Hills.

Given the 2 to 4 week time frame you mentioned, this would likely be the most relaxing, and enjoyable adventure. The Hills (Black Hills) offer one of the greatest vacation spots and making a loop up to the Hills and back to Vernon perhaps coming South through Cheyenne, WY, down through Denver and winding back SE to Vernon would be a fun trip.

There's so much to see up in the Hills area. We'd recommend planning to find a base campground, parking your rig, and touring from there. If the rig you rent won't allow for towing a car along, then rent a car once in the Hills and poke around with that.

If this sounds interesting, we can offer some suggestions as to where to stay, what to see, etc. Drop a inquiry if you'd like.

Steve & Lynette
Hey, thanx for the route. Thats actually one of the things thats been concerning me, is that theres not too much to do up in the dakotas, other than mt rushmore. What else is there to do up there?
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Old 12-27-2010, 11:02 AM   #8
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Mt Rushmore, Crazy Horse, Devels tower, Custer State park,Needles Highway, Hot Springs,Then off to Beartooth,Cody Wyoming. Little big horn. Yellowstone.
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Old 12-27-2010, 11:24 AM   #9
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I agree that driving a MH around DC is not something you want to do but I wouldn't discount DC because of that. We just completed a nine month trip through 25 states and DC is near the top of our list of places to see and visit. As mentioned, staying at Cherry Hill RV park and using the metro is a great way to see all there is to see there.

Towing a car behind a rental is usually cost prohibitive since it can cost $2500 to get a toad ready to go.

As for "saving" money by renting an RV.... I wouldn't count on it so I'd recommend that you do the trip for the adventure involved and not because you think you might be able to save some money.

Most of all, take your time and have fun.

Stay safe.

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Old 12-28-2010, 03:57 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hippyman View Post
I am thinking about taking my first RV trip, probably coming up in the spring or summer of 2011, so I thought I might need to ask the experts here for advice first. First off, there will be 3 people travelling, and we will be renting. We're still debating where to go, but we're throwing around either to DC, the Dakotas, or California's nat'l parks. Either way, I figure on being gone roughly 2 weeks to a month. I've heard several resources on free campsites, including walmarts Other than that, how much money can we save on the road?(usually, we either drive wherever we go, or fly and rent a car)
this free walmart guide is updated by the users of the site.

Walmart Store Locations Map - Wal-Mart Guide
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Old 12-28-2010, 07:26 AM   #11
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Mt Rushmore, Crazy Horse, Devels tower, Custer State park,Needles Highway, Hot Springs,Then off to Beartooth,Cody Wyoming. Little big horn. Yellowstone.
Plus, Badlands NP, Wall SD, Deadwood, Wind Cave NP, Jewel Cave NM. The problem won't be finding things to see and do, the problem will be you won't have enough time. In four years of full timing, it is one of the top areas in the lower 48 that we have encountered.

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Old 12-28-2010, 07:55 AM   #12
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Hi hippyman,
All the posts contain great information. However, two weeks to a month may seem like a lot of time, but it is not. Can you tell us where you'll begin your trip from? I ask because you are renting a coach. There is usually a mileage charge in the rental agreement. There is enough to do in the USA that spending more time in a campground and then seeing everything in a 50 to 100 mile radius may be a consideration.

Renting a car should be no problem. Many car rental agencies will deliver the car to your camp site.

Please let us know where you'll begin the trip from.
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Old 12-28-2010, 11:13 PM   #13
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Another great route to the Black Hills is up Highway 2 in Nebraska. From Grand Island to Alliance you won't find a prettier road. Charles Kuralt called it one if the top 10 roads in the US. We go that way to Sturgis every summer. Beautiful on the bike. Usually come back the Murdo way. Give it a try you won't be disappointed.
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Old 12-28-2010, 11:20 PM   #14
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Another great route to the Black Hills is up Highway 2 in Nebraska. From Grand Island to Alliance you won't find a prettier road. Charles Kuralt called it one if the top 10 roads in the US. We go that way to Sturgis every summer. Beautiful on the bike. Usually come back the Murdo way. Give it a try you won't be disappointed.

Highway 2 is the east/west hwy, that goes thru glacier natl park, right? If thats it, I already have it scheduled in.
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