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Old 01-13-2016, 02:02 PM   #1
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Campgrounds

I'm a newbie and may try to plan a road trip in a few months but don't have a clue where to start. For example:
1. How many hours is reasonable to drive without burnout.
2. What is the best way to find campgrounds along the way. Is there a book of campgrounds in the U.S. or specific areas or is it best just to get on the Internet and look at the area you want to visit and locate campgrounds.
3. I want to make sure I stay in safe places. Are the books/internet accurate?
Thanks,
mransford
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Old 01-13-2016, 02:12 PM   #2
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#1. It depends on many factors, ie; driver age, road condition/s, traffic, weather, etc. Ideal conditions, we do 300-400 per day-trying to limit night driving. #2.Woodalls, Good Sam and other hard bound directories, Internet sites, advice from the FORUM. #3.For the most part, yes, but there are exceptions, particularly with campgrounds located near large metropolitan areas or known high crime areas. Happy Trails - Bronk
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Old 01-13-2016, 02:20 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mransford View Post
I'm a newbie and may try to plan a road trip in a few months but don't have a clue where to start. For example:
1. How many hours is reasonable to drive without burnout.
2. What is the best way to find campgrounds along the way. Is there a book of campgrounds in the U.S. or specific areas or is it best just to get on the Internet and look at the area you want to visit and locate campgrounds.
3. I want to make sure I stay in safe places. Are the books/internet accurate?
Thanks,
mransford
1) This is up to you and your coach. Personally, I try to limit it to 8 hours a day, with 4 to 6 being preferred. A six hour drive with stops to eat or just take a break can easily morph into an 8 or nine hour drive.
2)Google is your friend. I try to look at up to date reviews for campgrounds to see what others are saying about them, as well as viewing images of the campgrounds to see if we actually want to be there.
3) They are more reliable than crossing your fingers and hoping.
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Old 01-13-2016, 02:25 PM   #4
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Try to plan to stop before it gets dark, much easyier to set up. We usually stop by 4 pm, set up, happy hour and dinner. 250-300 miles in one day. We find rv reviews are pretty good at getting an idea about campgrounds. Don't count on the campgrounds own web site, those are hit and miss on being what they really are like.
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Old 01-13-2016, 02:35 PM   #5
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Here's one of the websites that lists campgrounds RV Parky | RV Parks & Campgrounds Directory, Reviews, Photos
They also have apps for smartphones.
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Old 01-13-2016, 02:36 PM   #6
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Practice and experience. How far can you go in your car? How much more difficult is your camper? Now you have a starting point. Additional adjustments for type of road, driving after dark, difficulty of navigation etc are recommended.

These forums are an excellent resource for both of the last two questions. Start with short trips and work your way up. It's much less stressful to be ahead of schedule than behind.
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Old 01-13-2016, 02:40 PM   #7
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When I bought my RV and had to drive it home 1200 miles I thought people were crazy when they said they only drive 300 miles per day. 300 miles per day is more than 6 hours. I should say stressful hours. You will find driving a motor-home is nothing like driving a regular vehicle. you also can't drive 90 MPH
There are many websites and apps (allstay, rvillage, rvparkreviews) to name a few.
remember it doesn't matter what the park looks like or says in the brochure, read what people that stated there have to say
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Old 01-13-2016, 03:01 PM   #8
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I agree, I figure I can travel only half as far each day in the MH as I can in a car on the same roads. I drive slower in the MH than in the car (the MH never sees 70mph, and I'll drive faster than that in a car), and I just can't do it for 12 - 15 hours straight like I can a car.
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Old 01-13-2016, 03:57 PM   #9
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Try to plan to stop before it gets dark, much easyier to set up. We usually stop by 4 pm, set up, happy hour and dinner. 250-300 miles in one day.

Same here.
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Old 01-13-2016, 04:52 PM   #10
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I try to drive 8 hours a day. I strive to average 50 mph including breaks. I am very happy if by the end of the day I have gone 400 miles.
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Old 01-13-2016, 05:18 PM   #11
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Depends on if you are the Only driver, and if you are trying to get somewhere specific in a hurry. Also depends on how comfortable you are driving your setup.

I have a trip planned next fall where we have two LONG days back to back so we can reach our destination and play play play! By long i mean 400-500 mile days. BUT we will get up very early, and split the driving and it's highway miles. We have pullthru spots reserved on the other end of those long drives and just need to pull in and go to bed.

I wouldn't want to do this often. This is at the limit of what we can tolerate and not be miserable. The payoff is the week long vacation in one spot at the end of those 2 long travel days. Then we get to turn around do it again...
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Old 01-13-2016, 05:33 PM   #12
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The simple answer is start out slow. Make your first trip less than 100 miles, and then add 50 miles per day until you find your comfort zone. Long road trips are about the journey. I spent a month last year going from Portland, OR to Portland, ME. I didn't take the direct route, spent most of the trip off the interstates, and spent time in each state along the way.

To find a campground, I use google maps to figure out roughly where I'll be at the end of a day, and then use it to search for campgrounds around that point. Read the reviews to look for some good spots, and go for it.
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Old 01-13-2016, 05:44 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mransford View Post
I'm a newbie and may try to plan a road trip in a few months but don't have a clue where to start. For example:
1. How many hours is reasonable to drive without burnout.
2. What is the best way to find campgrounds along the way. Is there a book of campgrounds in the U.S. or specific areas or is it best just to get on the Internet and look at the area you want to visit and locate campgrounds.
3. I want to make sure I stay in safe places. Are the books/internet accurate?
Thanks,
mransford
Here is my take -

1). It depends if you are destination oriented meaning your vacation starts at the campground if so, then you may drive as long as you feel you can - perhaps 8 to 10 hours. If you are sightseeing on the way to your destination then a reasonable number is 300 miles or 5 hours of driving which when you factor in lunch and rest stops and sightseeing, etc. is about 8 hours from the time you left the campground in the morning to your next stop.

2) The easiest is to look them up is online however it is always nice to have a reference that you can thumb through and the most comprehensive book is the Good Sam RV Travel and Camping Guide. It is the size of a big city phone book and is currently only $6.95 at Campingworld. Good Sam RV Travel & Savings Guide, 2016 Edition - Good Sam Enterprises Llc 16RTG - Directories & Guides - Camping World I always get one to have in the RV but as I like to plan ahead I do most of my research online. I use the Good Sam Trip Planner which shows the campgrounds along the route. I also use maps.google.com for route planning and I zoom in on an area where I would like to stay and then do a "rv parks and campgrounds" search and the results show up as red dots which you can click on for more info. I get reviews of the parks from Tripadvisor or Google Reviews. I also like to use Google Street view to zoom in on the park to see what the entrance looks like and what the layout is compared to the campground diagram.

3) I go by the reviews and read all of them not just relying on the "score" of the location. The reviews will give you incite to issues you many encounter. My method of choosing a campground is reviews over cost when there are more than one in the area I want to stop at. If there is only one and the review is negative I will look elsewhere.
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Old 01-13-2016, 09:54 PM   #14
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I'm a newbie and may try to plan a road trip in a few months but don't have a clue where to start.

Depends on a few things... Are you retired and in no hurry? Are you still working and have to make the most of your time? Are you the only driver? Do you tend to get sleepy while driving?

1. How many hours is reasonable to drive without burnout.

If you have unlimited time, 200-300 miles is good. Get there around 2pm and stay 2 nights and tour the immediate area.

2. What is the best way to find campgrounds along the way. Is there a book of campgrounds in the U.S. or specific areas or is it best just to get on the Internet and look at the area you want to visit and locate
campgrounds.

Depends on the kind of place you want to stay...Google the nearby city for rv parks or campgrounds, go to the official national park site if staying there, there's a good site for national forest campgrounds www.forestcamping.com, there are excellent county and city parks in or near small towns, there are free camping sites, state park sites and www.RVParkReviews.com is very good. Woodalls is a huge paper RV park directory (almost too big now) and is available at Camping World.

3. I want to make sure I stay in safe places. Are the books/internet accurate? In 16 years of constant travel and staying at every kind of site there is, we have never felt unsafe where we stayed - even out in the boonies. Be aware of your surroundings and the type of area you're around. If you don't feel good about a place, just move. That's what the wheels are for.
Above all, there's no need to make constant reservations. Don't lock yourself in and enjoy your travels. You might have one place in mind for the night but as you're driving you see a beautiful lake or river and want to stay nearby. You can do it! Enjoy....
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