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Old 12-29-2013, 05:12 AM   #1
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How did you plan routes for trip around US

we plan to travel around US in our camper in 2014. We live in VA and want to go north to Washington,NY,maybe new England area, south to Florida, and west to CA and back.

I notice some have done similar trips. Please give details on how you planned your trip. Key spots to visit, what campground directory did you use, where did you overnight camp for free.
any info would be helpful. We wood plan on driving 200 miles per day.

what helpful resources did you use, websites, directories for campgrounds, etc. We have a WB type C MH. What did you use for data connectivity for cell or computer.

thanks
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Old 12-29-2013, 07:03 AM   #2
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Here are some of the tools that we use when planning and while traveling:

For Destinations:
Motor Home Magazine, travel articles
Television travels shows
Area visitor centers
National and State Parks; U.S. National Park ServiceFind A Park
Great American Road Trips, America's Byways; America's Byways
Guy Fieri book: Diners, Drive-Ins, dives; Diners Drive-ins and Dives Locations by State / Province

For travel:
Google maps; https://maps.google.com/
Atlas maps
Used for our Alaskan Trip:
We planed our trip using RV adventure Videos. These proved to be the most informative on roads, campgrounds, restaurants, interesting sights, and activities along the way. These are videos we used : "Alaska; RV adventure of a life time", "RVing Alaska", "The Great Rocky Mountain Adventure Glacier Park and Canadian Rockies", and " Alaska Inside Passage". See their web site: RV Adventure Videos with John Holod Productions

We also watched the videos as we traveled to make sure we captured all the sights.


For Campgrounds:
KOA
Passport America publication http://www.passportamerica.com/campgrounds
Corps Camping publication
Campground map: Campground Map by epgSoft
Local visitor center info.

Overnight camping:
Cracker Barrels
Cabals
Wall-Marts

We capture our travels by blog.:
It has provided an excellent way to remember our experiences and we continue to improve our technique. Our blog is http://www.irv2.com/forums/

Safe travels and THE JOY IS IN THE RIDE
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Old 12-29-2013, 07:05 AM   #3
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Campground Directories I like:
Woodalls*
Good Sam*
Passport*
All Stays Camp & RV
*You can either view these directories on their web sight or use their app on your iPhone

Free Overnight for me is always at rest areas, easy off, easy on, no local traffic.

For internet I use my iPad as a hotspot. Verizon is the service provider

I use my Rand McNally RVND 7710 GPS to pick rest areas, campgrounds, fuel, etc... It's already programmed in from the factory.

After I pick a place I use Google Earth to get a view of the campground and area to make sure I like it.
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Old 12-29-2013, 07:22 AM   #4
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The trip is about the Journey not the Destanation

Quote:
Originally Posted by rvtime2 View Post
we plan to travel around US in our camper in 2014. We live in VA and want to go north to Washington,NY,maybe new England area, south to Florida, and west to CA and back.

I notice some have done similar trips. Please give details on how you planned your trip. Key spots to visit, what campground directory did you use, where did you overnight camp for free.
any info would be helpful. We wood plan on driving 200 miles per day.

what helpful resources did you use, websites, directories for campgrounds, etc. We have a WB type C MH. What did you use for data connectivity for cell or computer.

thanks
When we went out west last fall for a month the only reservations that we made ahead of time was at the trailer village at the Grand Canyon, other than that......no plans. Over night on the road...easy, Cracker Barrel, Wal-Mart, Lowes, etc. If I wanted to go to a campground, 1-2 day ahead I would see how much I want to drive in that time frame and then pick a town or area where we want to stay then look at Reviews of RV Parks and Campgrounds - RV Park Reviews to look at the resorts/campground and make a reservation 1-2 days out, worked really good for us. As far as internet on the road, I always just used the campground Wi-Fi, but on this trip I wanted the internet all the time in case I needed it, Verizon Jet-pack, $112.00 to buy it then I own it, I just but air time when I need it when we travel now, worked really good! After riding our Harley all over the USA (all 48 states) we came to not to make plans, reservations, or be on a time frame( no watch, live by the sun) and the same still drives us when we travel in the Coach. We still work and have to live by a watch and within a time frame still, so when we go on vacation........no plans other than a direction
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Old 12-29-2013, 07:24 AM   #5
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We use rvparkreviews.com when looking for a campground. It has a feature that allows you to look at the campground with a map or a satellite view. For us making reservations is the way to go. We finished making reservations for Aug 2014 at the CG's we had chosen and a few had already filled up.....not because they were the best but because there was a jamboree and music festival in the area.
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Old 12-29-2013, 07:26 AM   #6
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Some electronic resources we use:

- "Base Camp" . . . software by Garmin, let's you create routes and transfer them to your Garmin GPS device (free, maybe just a Mac program)

- "Routes, Planning your journeys" . . . an app for your i thing, good for planning a trip

- "Finger Measure" . . . an app for your i thing, good for figuring distances while on the run
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Old 12-29-2013, 09:55 AM   #7
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For those who have already done the US RVing experience, please list some of your favorite places you have visited, please list name, and city and state, and maybe a campground there you liked.
thanks all
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Old 12-29-2013, 10:24 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rvtime2 View Post
For those who have already done the US RVing experience, please list some of your favorite places you have visited, please list name, and city and state, and maybe a campground there you liked.
thanks all
Check this out:

U.S. National Park ServiceFind A Park

We have not been to any National Park or National Monument that disappointed us (to be specific, we typically head to the left, or west). We have not been to all, but many. Some more than once. They are literal gifts! The campgrounds we have camped in within a park have been superb - Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Capitol Reef - we plan to use more of them.
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Old 12-29-2013, 01:04 PM   #9
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Twice, we've made 5 month trips using cell phones, a Verizon card and the Rand/McNally road map...with no reservations. On some popular holidays(like July 4th) we called several CGs in the area and stayed put for the holiday. Otherwise, no problems finding a CG...anywhere.

It seems we can't plan very far in advance due to our changes in route decisions caused by wanting to stay longer in an area of interest or a campground that made really tasty cinnamon buns. After 48 states, 36 National Parks and many wonderful places in between, this simplistic mode has worked well for us.

If by chance, we run into a CG that we don't like or we feel uncomfortable with, we move on. Sometimes, if we really like the CG and the area has some good Jeep roads, we'll stay longer. We found this mode of travel works in Canada and Alaska as well.
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Old 12-29-2013, 01:14 PM   #10
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Hey. No one mentioned "streets and trips". we use it a lot, I mean A LOT.. Especially the "Nearby places" feature. We key in campgrounds, walmarts, casinos, Nat'l parks, historical sites, etc. Then when we route the trip, we can see what is in the area. It also keeps track of milage/time. and costs.. Once we find where we want to visit, we also use rvparkreviews, to get info on campgrounds. We also use passport America half price campgrounds when possible.[ there are a lot of restrictions]. Many people use the 3/300 concept when traveling. Drive no more then 300 miles, or stop by 3:00 pm.[ which ever comes first], A good rule of thumb. We have been rv'ing for over 30 years, have been to half of the Nat'l parks/monuments, and civil war sites. Visited all of the 48 connected states. Always looking for the next adventure. Have fun and enjoy 'your ' adventures.
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Old 12-29-2013, 02:20 PM   #11
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Look at the "Delorme Trip Planer" you can install it on your laptop and plan and change routes until your hearts content.
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Old 12-29-2013, 03:08 PM   #12
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For those who have already done the US RVing experience, please list some of your favorite places you have visited, please list name, and city and state, and maybe a campground there you liked.
thanks all
Gosh, so many...

*Prairie du Chien,WI - @Frenchman's Landing CG. On the Mississippi River..eagles soar
*Hermosa, SD - Badlands, Wind Cave NP, Custer SP and Mt. Rushmore..must drive(toad) Needle's Hwy(87) & Iron Mt. Rd(alt.16).
*Columbia Falls, MT. - @ Mountain View RV...Glacier/Many Glacier NP.(Going to the Sun RD)Hungry Horse Res., Whitefish.
*Wapiti, WY. between Cody & Yellowstone NP.(Hwy 14/20) Yellowstone NP, Chief Joseph Hwy and the Beartooth Hwy into Red Lodge...what a drive(toad)
*Grand Teton NP can't remember which CG inside park.
*Rocky Mt. NP., Estes Park, CO.@Elk Meadow Resort.. Don't miss the Old Fall River Rd and the drive into Estes from Loveland is unforgettable, The Trail Ridge Rd. is scenic as well.
*Woodland Park, CO.@ Diamond CG....Pikes Peak and the Garden of the Gods.
*Great Sand Dunes NP @ the park. Amazing how these were formed and a hike to the falls(boots a must) is hard, but worth it.
*Mesa Verde NP, Delores,CO.@Priest Gulch CG(this is a great destination CG, what ALL CGs should be. Many beautiful roads to explore.
*Arches and Canyonlands NPs...Moab, UT@ OK RV Park(well named)side trips into the Wolfe Ranch and to Castle Valley was 'interesting'. Jeep rds.
*Capital Reef NP...Torre, UT @Thousand Lakes RV. Great drive on 24 into Torre. From there, South on hwy 12...not for the faint of heart(Hell's Backbone 14deg. grade)and a drop offs on both sides...beautiful, scary.
*Bryce Canyon, & Zion NPs...Glendale, UT. @Bauers Ranch RV. We backtracked into Bryce for a better look and Zion will blow you away.
*North Rim - Grand Canyon NP., Jacob Lake, AZ.@Kaibab RV Village. The drive into the park surprised and reminded me of parts of WVa...forested and hilly. Lots of pull offs for viewing and way less crowded..my fav.
*South Rim - Grand Canyon NP.,@Williams, AZ.@Canyon Gateway Park. You can take the train from Williams, but some thought it wasn't worth the price...not much to see. The 'ditch' has more magnificent views that you can take in on one visit. We also took a trip up Bill Williams' Mountain, climbed the tower for one heck of a view. Did some RT. 66 touring as well. Don't buy gas just outside the CG, MUCH cheaper in town.
*Hover Dam...Boulder City, NV. @Canyon Trail RV. Jeez it was hot! Take the tour of the dam...always wanted to...got'er done!

Those were the 'biggies' but on that trip we visited the Petrified Forest NP and the Painted Desert, camped at Palo Duro and visited relatives on the way back home. First trip lasting over 5 months...not bad for a newbie.
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Old 12-29-2013, 04:23 PM   #13
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We are not anal enough to have reservations. We decide what area of the country we like and just start driving. Generally it is west because that is where our best adventures have occurred. As you pass state lines, pick up brochures for various locations in the state. Ask the attendants at these welcome stations about what they like. As we stop for the night (when we get ready for a rest, we check a CG directory and see what is in the area we are passing through. Have not failed to find anything yet: some better than others however. Ask CG operators what people staying with them are traveling to see. There a tons of hints in the various state visitors magazines. If you find a place you like, then stay for a few days and check the area out. Years ago we found Silvergate, Wyoming and Granby, Colorado doing this.
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Old 12-29-2013, 04:55 PM   #14
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I collect links to places that I've found looking at other RVer's blogs, journals, etc, travel pages, etc. When I'm ready for a trip I stick all the locations in a Google map, and then choose routing that hits as many as possible, avoids interstates & takes as many scenic routes as possible.

Reservations are rare; only on holiday weekends at popular places, but if I end up stopping on a Friday or weekend, I'll often call ahead in the morning to see what is available.
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