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Old 02-18-2016, 09:32 PM   #1
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Leaving TX soon, with no real plans...Where to stay?

We are planning on heading toward the pacific northwest this summer, but no real dates, plans, or routes. We are basically just going full-time and going NW until we find a new home.

I know summer is the worst time to do this, since most RV parks will be booked up ahead of time. But we are both educators, and this is the only time we can travel.

Any suggestions on how to make our way toward Washington, with as little time in crappy road-side spots as possible?

We are hoping to settle in Oregon or Washington, and have three summer months to just tour around until we find our new home. But we don't really want to end up in Walmart parking lots each night.

Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
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Old 02-18-2016, 11:03 PM   #2
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Join and use Passport America. It is great for one night stays during the week.

Try freecampgrounds.com or google free campgrounds. Many small towns use them to promote tourist business. County parks sometimes have spots, as do fairgrounds.

Join the Moose, Eagles, Elks, and if possible the VFW. They also have RV spots and it is a great place to learn about the local area, have a beer and a good meal.

Check BLM land, national parks and forests.

We have been full time for 5 years and have spent maybe 40 nights at a Walmart. Sometimes it was due to poor planning and sometimes there was something in the area we wanted to see. Sometimes it was just a quick short overnight stop.

Enjoy your trip!!
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Old 02-19-2016, 05:08 AM   #3
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We went north to Yellowstone and then West. Liked Colorado, loved Wyoming! Stayed mostly at public parks, needing to stop at private RV parks only on some weekends and holidays due to crowds.

Was also checking for a homesite in OR or WA, but never could get a good feel of the cities/towns we scoped out ahead of time. And we've visited the area occasionally over the past few decades... raised on the west coast. Fun area, but you pay for it. Probably should stay through a full year before you buy a place. The weather is not for everyone.
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Old 02-19-2016, 07:28 AM   #4
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I lived in Seattle for a year when I was a kid. I loved it, and my wife loves the rainy days. We like to snuggle in with the animals on rainy days and read a good book.

But we also love to hike, watersports, snowsports, etc. I don't have any concerns about the weather.

Place to live...that is a concern. We have 3 months, at least, to just cruise around and find an area we like. We can go as long as maybe 2 years, but I don't want to be unemployed for more than a couple months, since I know that the longer you are off work (the bigger that gap in your resume), the harder it is for an employer to hire you back on. I figure a summer off wouldn't look too bad on my resume.

We don't mind $30-40 per night RV spots, and actually prefer them, depending on where we are at that time. I am sure there will be times where we are near really nice parks where we would rather stay there.

I just don't want to stay too many nights in Walmart parking lots, or on the side of the highway at road-side rests.

I will sign up with some of those sights mentioned above and see what they offer.

Currently, we use RVParky.com and have found places with good reviews along the way, but since we will be traveling in peak camping season, I am sure many of those places will be overbooked when we arrive.
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Old 02-19-2016, 09:58 AM   #5
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We went to the NW this past fall and easiest way to let you see where and what we did would be to check out my blog beginning with 8/3/15 - Big Dude's Eclectic Ramblings: 2015 Western Trip – Days 8 & 9 - Onward To Cody - and look at them thru 9/27/15. We really enjoyed it, especially OR and can see why you may want to live there.
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Old 02-19-2016, 10:34 AM   #6
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Will check out your blog!
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Old 02-19-2016, 10:53 AM   #7
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I would suggest going up the Oregon coast. Camp site, nice sites, are not all that hard to get.

Sea Perch has sites overlooking the ocean.

I can help with any additional info you need for western Washington.

We live just west of Olympia.
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Old 02-19-2016, 11:12 AM   #8
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Sonce I am a born and raised Oregonian tell me more. What type of terrain are you interested in? Rainy coastal or dry and warm high desert. Rural or metropolitan? We have four distinct ecology regions with 4 distinctly different climates. Once you tell me more about what you want I can suggest regions, climates, and places to stay.
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Old 02-19-2016, 11:16 AM   #9
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We were thinking up thru denver, salt lake city, upto portland, then down the coast. Cut over at eugene, to bend, sisters, then head toward seattle where we attend a wedding july 16. At that point we start trying to decide where we might find jobs and some property.

We will stop at many towns, maybe for a couple days each, depending on how we feel about each place.

No set plans, so this can all change as we see fit.

Of course, any suggestions of other paths or places we NEED to see are appreciated.

Typed this on cell phone while in dr office so please excuse tupos, puntuation, capitalixtion, etc
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Old 02-19-2016, 11:23 AM   #10
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We love it all! We are drawn to nature. Wife prefers coastal towns, so far.. Always just a drive to the other areas, including snow skiiing and wakeboarding areas. I am game for wherever we can get jobs and home/property to build on.

She has masters in library science and teacher certificatiom, i have tx and or licensed professional counselor and masters in clinical psychogy, but make more money doing computer repair and networking. So we have decent skills and certifications and hopefully can find work.

We just REALLY want to stop sweating on the way to our mailbox. Our health is declining because its too hot and sweaty to be outside much of the year here.
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Old 02-19-2016, 11:25 AM   #11
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And i need to get more surfing in!
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Old 02-19-2016, 12:37 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottandanna View Post
We are planning on heading toward the pacific northwest this summer, but no real dates, plans, or routes. We are basically just going full-time and going NW until we find a new home.
I know summer is the worst time to do this, since most RV parks will be booked up ahead of time. But we are both educators, and this is the only time we can travel.
Any suggestions on how to make our way toward Washington, with as little time in crappy road-side spots as possible?
We are hoping to settle in Oregon or Washington, and have three summer months to just tour around until we find our new home. But we don't really want to end up in Walmart parking lots each night.
Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
scottandanna
Since '01 we have left Wisconsin each November and traveled "anywhere warm in the warm south" and/or "up and down the west coast" for 4-5 months... (never making advanced plans or campground reservations).
We stay at State Parks, COE campgrounds or Passport America parks whenever possible.
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Old 02-19-2016, 01:07 PM   #13
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Although there are lots of different opinions on private membership campgrounds your itinerary lends itself to a Thousand Trails Zone Pass. Take a look at Oregon & Washington in particular.

We have been members for many years and yes, there are good parks & better parks but most in the NW are pretty good and in great locations. We full-time and wouldn't be without them.

Pencil out the $$$ using a Zone Pass and see if it would work for you. There are times you can get 2 ZP for the price of 1.
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Old 02-19-2016, 02:25 PM   #14
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Try the DRY side of WA. The Columbia River, or the shores of Lake FDR (the Columbia R. above Grand Coulee Dam) it doesn't freeze, you can fish year round. Keller Ferry,Seven Bays, Deer Meadows, Fort Spokane, Kettle Falls (the Banana belt of WA. ~10 inches of rain a year.


http://www.nps.gov/laro/index.htm
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