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Old 02-20-2016, 10:14 AM   #15
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All the above, although we've never used many of them, but plan to now that I know about them, thanks.

There was a recent thread here about the Rushmore area being very congested during late July-early August because of the Sturgis biker event. You may want to consider this in your planning. I have experienced it and it is significant.

Starting in the late 70s we used an Atlas, state maps, and the public libraries. We still do that, and I just came back from the library with an arm full of books about Southern UT and Northern AZ for part of our trip this Summer. If I learn about a book that I think is particularly helpful I then buy a copy to carry with us.

We don't spend much time in campgrounds, and when we do it's only to visit some nearby attraction and only for the time necessary to do that. The places we decide to visit are our destinations and campgrounds are only used to facilitate that. When traveling between destinations we use rest areas, truck stops, and whatever is available to overnight. They are quick and easy, although sometimes noisy, and even though there is some risk we haven't had a problem in the 40+ years we've been doing it. I'm not advocating this, only listing it as an option. There are some here who would not even consider it. Perhaps I should add that I always carry protection.

IMHO, interstates are the fastest way to travel if time is a consideration, if that is not the case I would certainly agree that more can often be seen from other highways. For example, we usually travel I-80 and I-70 from OR to WV which takes about 4.5 days for us, with stops at rest areas every night to sleep. One time we decided to use Rt 50 from WV to Austin, NV then North to I-80 and on to OR. That took 6.5 days.

As you might guess we're not full timers and don't plan to be, although we considered it back in the mid 90s after retirement. IMHO, this has some bearing on the use of campgrounds and time constraints.

Have a wonderful trip. IMHO, early planning is a key to that and also seems to heighten anticipation, another good thing IMHO.


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Old 02-21-2016, 01:13 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by RI GlenKathy View Post
I'm a new member to IRV2, so if this is not the correct forum let me know. I'm starting to plan a cross country trip in 2017, does anyone know of a web site or software I can use to plan the trip.

As part of the trip we plan to hit Yellowstone, Mount Rushmore, Grand Canyon, I know campgrounds will be long lead time to book.
I'd love to see what plans you come up with. I came here to start my own thread about Grand Canyon, Yellowstone and Mount Rushmore :-) As for how to plan, all the advice I've seen here is great. I usually Google the whole trip, then break it up into manageable chunks. I'm the only one driving, and I know from experience about 6 hours a day is the most I prefer to do without being too bushed. I can do more, but generally don't like it. I also know that if I want to drive for 6 hours, Google needs to say 5 hours or less.

Once I've split the trip up, I use rvparkreviews and Good Sam to find CG's I'd like to visit. Then I kill several hours reading each review and each park's website to see if it looks good. When I'm close enough to the trip to be certain of dates, I go ahead and make reservations for the must-do's. I often leave the basic overnight stops until the day of travel unless there's a reason to suspect I won't get a spot.

I like the idea of reading books about the area and learning more than a Google search of "things to do in XXX" will give you. I might have to do that before our big trip to the west/northwest.

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Old 02-22-2016, 12:37 PM   #17
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Question for dix39 - You mentioned you often stay overnight in rest areas on I-80 or I-70, and I'm confused as most rest areas here in the Southeast don't permit overnighting (although I see trucks parked in many of them).

Other than the given of just using it to sleep, maybe with the bedroom slide out, is there any kind of standard or policy for RV's parking overnight in the rest areas in the midwest and out west that you can share?

Thank you,
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Old 02-23-2016, 11:26 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by McGarrett50 View Post
Question for dix39 - You mentioned you often stay overnight in rest areas on I-80 or I-70, and I'm confused as most rest areas here in the Southeast don't permit overnighting (although I see trucks parked in many of them).

Other than the given of just using it to sleep, maybe with the bedroom slide out, is there any kind of standard or policy for RV's parking overnight in the rest areas in the midwest and out west that you can share?

Thank you,

Our use of I-70 and I-80 has usually been from OR to WV where we get on I-80 at Winnamucca, NV travel it to Cheyenne, WY, then down I-25 to Denver and I-70 to near Wheeling, WV where we go South on I-79. I have never had a problem staying at rest areas overnight on any of these.

If there are signs that indicate no overnighting I generally continue on unless I am tired and need to stop, in which case I do. I have never been told to leave. There is also the option of staying at a nearby truck stop.

We previously used a TC towing a Tracker, but will take the trip with our MH and Tracker in tow this year. I don't know how slides would fit into the picture. We would usually pull into the rest area near or after dark and leave early to mid morning. We also use them for lunch breaks.

IMHO, Western interstates have less traffic, except in and around major cities which is pretty much the same everywhere. Over the years we have stayed overnight in rest areas and truck stops on the many interstates we have traveled in Western states with no problems, although I try to avoid staying in either of these near major cities anywhere.

In the western states there are also large areas of public land, primarily Forest Service and BLM, that usually have campgrounds, although these are not generally immediately accessible from interstates.

Best of luck.


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